Just like the first half of the competition, Sunrisers Hyderabad were on the wrong side of the things in the second half when pacer T Natarajan was affected by COVID. In his absence, the franchise had signed the Jammu and Kashmir pacer Umran Malik as his replacement for the Middle-East leg of the competition.
In just two games, Umran has not just turned up but turned up with high-quality pace, hitting the 150 kmph mark plenty of times. In the clash against RCB on Wednesday, the pacer hit the 153 kmph mark, setting record this season. SRH skipper Kane Williamson hailed the special talent, stating that it is not surprising to see the youngster perform well. He also added that the pacer has been a really valuable addition to the side.
“Umran certainly is special. We've seen him in the nets for a couple of seasons. Special opportunity for him and it's not surprising to see him come and do well. Been a really valuable addition to the side. I try and keep it really simple with him but he's got a lot of mates in the team and they share the message and he takes the game on,” Williamson stated.
While Sunrisers’ competition ended pretty early, they have sprung two surprises – with wins over Rajasthan Royals and Royal Challengers Bangalore late in the competition. Williamson added that it was great to see the small improvements from the side in the last leg.
“It's been a really tough season but it was great to see these small improvements. The conditions are challenging and to see the fight and the heart in the second half was great to see. It was about trying to maximise the powerplay on this pitch. The ball held in the surface and you had to take a couple of steps back to go forward again.”
The Kiwi batsman also revealed that it was a challenging total but Glenn Maxwell’s innings turned out to be the difference. Williamson, just like his counterpart Kohli, opined that the Australian’s wicket was the turning point in the clash.
“We got to a challenging total. We knew things wouldn't happen quickly with the ball today [but stayed patient]. Nice to dismiss Maxwell - dismissing him one way or another was the thing to be done. To close it out at the death, to turn up and show the fight when we're not in contention, was great to see.”
“It's been a challenging season and it's been some great opportunities for some youngsters. We've had a lot of last-over finishes and being on the right side of those is clearly helpful. But one thing tonight is it was satisfying for the group."