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Rashid Khan among world’s best spinners, says Sunrisers Hyderabad captain Kane Williamson

Sunrisers Hyderabad skipper Kane Williamson lavished praised on leg-spinner Rashid Khan after his side’s loss to Chennai Super Kings in Indian Premier League (IPL) final.

cricket Updated: May 28, 2018 08:37 IST
Bihan Sengupta
Bihan Sengupta
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Rashid Khan,Kane Williamson,Sunrisers Hyderabad
Sunrisers Hyderabad Kane Williamson, left, and Rashid Khan have been two of the best performers in IPL 2018.(AP)

Sunrisers Hyderabad skipper Kane Williamson tipped Rashid Khan to come good in Afghanistan’s debut Test against India, later this year, complementing the young spinner as one of the top spinners in the world. (Highlights)

“He’s a world class player. We’ve seen that in this format but it’s great that he’s going to be play some Test cricket and I think is a challenge for anyone but an enjoyable challenge because he’s up there with the top spinners in the game,” Williamson said at the post-match press conference after his side lost to Chennai Super Kings by eight wickets in the final. “It’s always a pleasure to face him at the nets and against him as well in the near future. If the wicket’s responding, like any spinner that offers him a bit more. The full package (of) Rashid is great to have in the side.” (scorecard)

It was a woeful night for Sunrisers Hyderabad as they were blown away in what otherwise was anticipated to be a close final between Chennai Super Kings and Sunrisers Hyderabad. A 179-run target is modest enough but to get that with nine balls to spare despite the scoreboard reading 20/1 at the end of five overs, perhaps states the carnage that was unleashed in the middle, led by a 36-year-old who had contemplated retirement around 12 months back.

READ | Kane Williamson’s gritty knock in vain as Chennai Super Kings beat Sunrisers Hyderabad to win IPL 2018

Williamson, too, reiterated that Shane Watson, who slammed a 57-ball 117 to bring up his second century of this IPL, single-handedly made all the difference. “At the halfway stage on the surface, we thought we had a very competitive total. It wasn’t perhaps your usual surface at the Wankhede and it held a little bit and was responsive to the slower ball. So we thought that 180-mark was a really good target.

“I think from that point onwards, that innings of Shane Watson got them to play and anyone who turns out with an innings of 100-plus in the final, it was obviously a significant effort and great contribution to their side and very difficult to stop, so a fantastic knock,” Williamson, who ended the tournament as the highest run-getter with 735 runs under his belt, said.

He also didn’t want to cite fatigue as a factor given his side had to fly all the way to Kolkata, play the second qualifier against Kolkata Knight Riders and head back to Mumbai for the final. “I suppose it gave us the opportunity after losing a semifinal to them and get back in the final. It required a fairly long flight to Kolkata, but that’s the nature of it. Whether it’s fair or whether it’s a good thing to do to play an extra game, and may be have some momentum, we couldn’t really know. I guess, it was nice to have that opportunity to still make it to the final, which we were able to do,” he added.

First Published: May 28, 2018 08:30 IST