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David Warner has continued his brilliant form ahead of the Cricket World Cup with another IPL half-century, but was upstaged by a superb match-winning 96 by former Test teammate Shane Watson.
Watson belted 96 from 53 balls to guide Chennai Super Kings to a seven-wicket win over Warner’s Sunrisers Hyderabad side on Tuesday.
Warner, who leads the competition with 574 runs, has now passed 50 in eight of his 10 innings and has one century to his name in a blistering return to action following a 12-month suspension.
The NSW left-hander scored 57 from 45 deliveries as the Sunrisers scored 3-175 after being put in to bat by CSK skipper MS Dhoni.
Warner’s innings was a more measured affair compared to many of his big-hitting innings for the Sunrisers, and contained just four boundaries and two sixes.
His vigil was ended by the quick hands of Dhoni, who stumped the 32-year-old off the bowling of veteran spinner Harbhajan Singh.
Manish Pandey went on score an unbeaten 83 to help the Sunrisers to a decent total and the visitors got off to the perfect start by running out South Africa skipper Faf du Plessis for one.
But Watson and Suresh Raina (37) steadied the ship and Watson laid the platform for victory only to be cruelly denied a fourth IPL ton by a brilliant legside diving catch by England wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow.
The Aussie veteran took a particular liking to Rashid Khan, who finished with unflattering figures of 1-44 off four overs.
Many on social media thought Watson targeted Rashid after the young spinner got in his face early in his innings:
— SHAKIB IS HAPPINESS (@Nafiu_Shakibian) April 23, 2019
Rashid cut to size by rampaging Watson tonite
— Cricketwallah (@cricketwallah) April 23, 2019
— LaVi Singh (@Lavito777) April 23, 2019
Smart Bowler Rashid Khan conducted 44 runs in his 4 over quota courtesy SHANE WATSON
Rashid was showing eyes to watson in 1st over than watson hit 28runs on 8 balls against rashid khan pic.twitter.com/Tc3FUiaRG1
— muhammad Noman (@muhamma62025313) April 23, 2019
— …Rachit (@rachit_g2) April 23, 2019
— amir hussain (@Iam_amir86) April 23, 2019
Watson teaching 19 Yrs old Rashid Khan some good lessons of life. #CSKvSRH
— Bhavesh Jha (@imbhavj) April 23, 2019
— Hussain (@younghungrykid) April 23, 2019
Only Watson has hit Rashid Khan so cleanly in this IPL! #CSKvSRH
— Pritam (@roy_pritam11) April 23, 2019
Watson having the last laugh against Rashid #CSKvSRH
— Mayank Chourasia (@mayank91022) April 23, 2019
The hosts required nine from the final over and crawled over the line with a ball to spare through Dwayne Bravo after Ambati Rayudu (21) holed out with just a run needed for victory.