KOLKATA, India (AP) — Sunrisers Hyderabad’s big-money signing Harry Brook scored the first century of this year's Indian Premier League and helped his side beat Kolkata Knight Riders by 23 runs on Friday.
Brook, who was picked for about $1.65 million in the December auctions, smacked 100 not out off 55 balls as Hyderabad finished with 228-4. It was also the highest team total of the season, and Kolkata fell short of it despite skipper Nitish Rana’s 75 off 41 balls, finishing at 205-7.
Opening for Hyderabad for only the second time in his short IPL career, Brook gave his side a quick start.
He put on 46 off 25 balls for the first wicket with Mayank Agarwal (9) but Hyderabad was down to 57-2 in five overs after losing Agarwal and Rahul Tripathi (9) to Andre Russell.
The West Indies’ all-rounder picked up 3-22 in 2.1 overs, but injured himself in the process.
Brook couldn’t be stopped, though, as he smacked five fours and two sixes to reach 50 off 32 balls. He put on 72 off 47 balls for the third wicket with skipper Aiden Markram, who also capitalized on good batting conditions at the Eden Garden to score 50 off 25 balls.
Brook, a 24-year-old Englishman, had scored just 29 runs from his first three IPL appearances.
“It was a special night,” said Brook. “I think I was putting pressure on myself after the first few games. People on social media start to call you ‘rubbish’. Glad I could shut them up, to be honest. I just went into the ‘don’t care’ mode and played.”
Markram hit two fours and five sixes as Brook played second fiddle during this partnership, failing to get away Kolkata’s spin bowlers.
He then upped the ante near the end after Markram’s dismissal, adding another 72 runs off 33 balls with Abhishek Sharma, who scored 32 off 17 balls. Later, Heinrich Klaasen scored 16 not out off six balls.
Brook hit 12 fours and three sixes for his maiden IPL hundred.
In reply, Kolkata was down to 20-3 in 3.3 overs. Marco Jansen (2-37) struck twice to remove in-form Venkatesh Iyer (10) and Sunil Narine for a golden duck. Bhuvneshwar Kumar dismissed hard-hitting opener Rahmanullah Gurbaz for a three-ball duck too.
Rana hit five fours and six sixes to counter the Hyderabad attack, thus bringing his side back into the game.
He added 62 runs off 29 balls with N Jagadeesan (36), even as wickets continued falling for Kolkata.
Rana and Rinku Singh provided a late spark to put on 69 off 39 balls, before the former’s dismissal put an end to Kolkata’s hopes.
Singh was still at the crease though, and smacked 58 not out off 31 balls, including four fours and four sixes.
But it was too much to ask even for Singh to reprise his finish of five consecutive sixes in the last over against Gujarat Titans.
Hyderabad’s second win of the season sees them rise to seventh in the table with four points from four games. It plays Mumbai Indians next on Tuesday.
Kolkata is still in fourth, also on four points from four games but ahead of three other teams on run-rate. It also plays Mumbai Indians, but on Sunday.
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