IPL 2017, SRH vs RPS: Bipul Sharma's brilliance in the field is the SK Play of the Day
Rahul Tripathi was run out for just a solitary run.
The Sunrisers Hyderabad hosted a resurgent Rising Pune Supergiant for the first match of the doubleheader on Saturday at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad. In the first leg of the tournament, the Supergiant thumped the Sunrisers by six wickets in the huge run chase, courtesy a masterclass from MS Dhoni.
The defending champions have been a dominant force at their home ground as they have won all their five home games so far in IPL 2017.
Both teams were evenly placed on the points table before the start of the game with the Supergiant at third position with 14 points, while the Sunrisers Hyderabad were at 13 points. There was plenty at stake in this much-awaited encounter as the two sides battled it out to better their chances of a playoff spot.
David Warner won the toss and elected to bowl first on a wicket which he believed to play much better under the lights. The Pune outfit were jolted with an early blow as they lost their in-inform opening batsmen, Rahul Tripathi in the second over of the innings to a brilliant piece of fielding by Bipul Sharma.
Watch the video of this splendid effort here
Tripathi has been in sublime form with the bat throughout this edition with 353 runs in the ten league matches and is one of the leading run-scorers in the Pune team. He has been a revelation for his team and has been aggressive at the top of the innings.
The Supergiant needed a special effort from this talented youngster but unfortunately for him and the team as he failed to create any impact with the bat as he was dismissed for a solitary run. A piece of brilliance on the field by Bipul Sharma got rid of the exciting opener which is the SK Play of the Day.
In the second over of the innings bowled by Ashish Nehra, the fifth ball was a slow off cutter pitched on leg stump. Tripathi tried to flick the ball past the short fine leg fielder but failed to find the gap and fell a couple of steps to the left of Bipul Sharma at short fine leg.
Tripathi charged down the track for a non-existent single but was sent back by the experienced Ajinkya Rahane from the other end. Sharma, making a comeback into the playing XI, ran across to his left and picked it up cleanly and threw directly at the stumps.
In the context of the game
The visiting side suffered an early blow as Tripathi was caught well short of the crease, giving the reigning champions an early advantage going into this crucial encounter. The visiting side kept on losing wickets at regular intervals and a lack of a substantial partnership in the middle overs resulted in them posting a below par score of 148 in their quota of 20 overs.
The overseas recruits of Steve Smith and Ben Stokes provided some kind of stability with a 60-run stand for the third wicket. The duo managed to rotate the strike and punish the odd bad deliveries to the fence in their crucial partnership. Unfortunately for the Pune outfit, they both were dismissed in back to back overs to dent the scoring rate of the team.
The Pune-based franchise were dependent on their former skipper, MS Dhoni on pushing the score at the back end of the innings and he did not disappoint them either. Coming into bat at No. 5, Dhoni smashed 31 runs in his 21 deliveries with two boundaries and two huge hits over the fence to ensure that his team reached a respectable total of 148 runs in the first innings.
Dhoni was particularly severe on Bhuvneshwar Kumar as he smacked 18 runs in the penultimate over including a four and two maximums, to giving the Pune outfit much-needed impetus going into the second innings of the match.