The 52nd match of the IPL 2020 saw Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) clashing in what was a must-win game for both teams. A win for RCB would have ensured playoffs qualification, while SRH winning would have kept them in the hunt for a final four finish.
David Warner won the toss and put RCB into bat first, a decision that came in handy from the start. On a slow wicket in Sharjah, SRH bowlers bowled at the perfect speed and used variations of the right kind, as RCB batsmen failed to try to force peace on the ball.
Josh Philippe (32), AB de Villiers (24), and Washington Sundar (21) pushed RCB’s total to 120/7 on a difficult pitch to bat on. Sandeep Sharma (2/20) and Jason Holder (2/27) were the main wicket-takers, while Natarajan shined with 1/11 in his four overs.
In reply, Sundar got Warner’s wicket early for 8 runs, but Saha (39) and Pandey (26) added 50 runs to stabilize the innings, with SRH making 60 in the powerplay. But then RCB bowlers struck back with Chahal removing Saha and Pandey, while Udana removed Williamson for 8.
It looked like RCB might claw their way back into the match and somehow win, but Jason Holder hit 26* in 10 balls with 3 sixes and 1 four to end those hopes and took SRH to the win in 14.1 overs, with 5 wickets in hand.
This win sent SRH to no.4 spot in the points table with 12 points and an NRR of 0.555. This makes the Delhi Capitals versus Royal Challengers Bangalore match on Nov 2 a virtual quarter-final for a place in the playoffs.
SRH now just need to win their last match against MI on November 3 in Sharjah and they should qualify for the playoffs barring any upsets.