His stupendous 12-ball 37 set up Sunrisers Hyderabad’s successful run chase against Chennai Super Kings on Friday and Abhishek Sharma credited the feat to the hard work he had put in before the IPL with help from former batting stars Brian Lara and Yuvraj Singh. The 23-year-old Abhishek pummeled a listless Mukesh Chaudhary for 27 runs with the help of two fours and three sixes in the second over to set up the run chase of 166. Aiden Markram then anchored the SRH innings to take the team home with 11 balls to spare.

“It is all the hardwork i have put before this. Special thanks to my dad, Yuvi paaji and Brian Lara,” Abhishek, who was named player of the match, said at the post-match presentation.

“While bowling, we felt it was a slow wicket. So we wanted to take the powerplay on. We had a chance to prepare well before the IPL. We knew it will be slow but not if we take on the bowler. Because it would be difficult for the bowler as well,” added the youngster who scored at an astounding strike rate of 308.33. Asked which one he would prefer between high strike rate and big runs, he said, “Big scores matter, but I went with the flow today. Hopefully I will get out last next time.” SRH captain Pat Cummins joked that he would not be wanting to bowl to Abhishek.

“I would not be wanting to be bowling to him,” the Australian said.

“Different soil, slowed up as the game went on. Still a fantastic game. We have got plenty of fast bowlers. Shivam was hitting the spinners. So we took a chance with the fast bowlers bowling cutters.”

Asked about the home crowd, he said, “The crowd is crazy tonight, especially when MS (Dhoni) walked out. We love playing here, home conditions.”

CSK captain Ruturaj Gaikwad felt his side could not capitalise in the last five overs.

“It was a slow pitch. At the back end they bowled well. We couldn’t capitalise in the last five overs. We were in a good situation halfway but they bowled well at the back.

“Black soil pitch, so we expected the slowness. As the ball got older, it got slower. They used the conditions well – big boundary one end. We did not bowl well in the powerplay but did well to drag the game.

“170-175 is par, if we would have had a good powerplay with the ball, we could have had the game. There was slight dew at the later stage. Moeen was spinning the ball in the 15th-16th over, so not much of a difference.”

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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