Chasing a score of 151 on a tricky Chennai wicket is no easy feat. We have seen how games have turned out over the last few days where chasing sides struggled towards the back-end of innings which was also the template for SRH's performance today. A major reason behind most teams' collapse has been the lack of adventure or intent from batsmen during the powerplay.
However, in the game against Mumbai Indians, Sunrisers Hyderabad's Jonny Bairstow subverted that recent trope in some style!
Facing the likes of Jasprit Bumrah and Trent Boult in the Powerplay can quite often prove to be a nightmare. Don't believe us? Ask the Delhi Capitals batsmen from IPL 2020 final. Or even David Warner tonight, when an LBW appeal against him was turned down on the very first ball.
Jonny Bairstow survived a scare on the very first Bumrah ball he faced tonight as well. Mumbai Indians appealed for a caught behind and even asked for a review.
Bairstow managed to survive. In the case of any other batsman, that moment would've egged them to play a little safer, it further spurred Bairstow's instincts.
He sized himself up during the rest of the Bumrah over, assessing how the track behaves, where deliveries land and rotated the strike with Warner. But after the calm arrived the storm!
The next man in was Trent Boult and Bairstow was in the mood for rock and roll. He sent the first two deliveries of the over down the square leg boundary to race for four, forcing Trent Boult to change lanes and bowl from round the wicket.
The next delivery was dispatched with plenty of disdain over mid-off for a sensational six that ended up reaching the dugouts and causing havoc! Bairstow was smashing both bowlers and drinks fridges for fun tonight.
Bairstow then guided the following ball to the left of mid-off taking advantage of the position of the fielder in the ring and sent it for a boundary. Bairstow had just treated Boult like a joke, a sentence you might not hear often when it comes to Trent Boult.
Captain Rohit Sharma enforced a bowling change bringing his third pacer into the attack in the Powerplay. David Warner welcomed him with a boundary and Bairstow carried on the carnage. He was lucky to get a top edge that looped high in the air and landed in the SRH dugout for yet another six.
A perfect six
The next ball, however, found the meat of the bat as the Englishman went downtown. Bairstow lofted it over mid-on with unfiltered and immaculate confidence. Clean hands? Check. The sweet sound of the willow? Check. Holding his position long enough for the cameras to capture that moment in all its glory? Check. Check. Check.
Jonny Bairstow then greeted Krunal Pandya with another ridiculously delightful six. He had played several of those over the course of the match, and honestly, we lost count. This time around, however, he leaned in, adapting to Krunal's line, let his arms loose, and crunched the delivery over long-on once again!
At this juncture, Jonny Bairstow was on 39 from 13 and balls were flying off his bat like a conjurer pulling rabbits off a top hat. He went on to finish with 43 runs and it's his dismissal that was probably the saddest moment of the night!
Jonny Bairstow was hitting balls so cleanly and timing them so well. However, while trying to ramp a Krunal Pandya delivery, he went too deep in his crease and ended up hitting his own wicket., bringing to an end a wonderful and whirlwind inning that captivated and delighted everyone!
His side might have ended up losing the game at the end but Bairstow more than set them up for a grandstand finish. If only the rest of the batting order after David Warner could make it count. Sigh.