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AB a phenomenon: VVS

Bangalore: Sunrisers Hyderabad mentor VVS Laxman on Monday described their loss against Royals Challengers Hyderabad as “disappointing” and said it was the “phenomenal” knock by AB de Villiers which took the game away from them during their IPL match here.

“It was disappointing loss for Hyderabad as the team was dominating most part of the game, but one special innings from one player took the game away from them,” Laxman said.

“I think it was one of the best innings I could see in T20 format because AB is a phenomenon and displayed brilliant batting skills while wickets were falling at the other end,” he added. De Villiers produced one of the most devastating Twenty20 innings on Sunday as he smashed an unbeaten 89 from just 42 balls in RCB’s four-wicket win over Hyderabad.

Laxman said Hyderabad were ten runs short as Mitchell Starc bowled a beautiful last over, restricting Hyderabad to 155 runs. “We were ten runs short. Starc bowled a brilliant last over. David Warner was out in the third delivery. I thought 155 was defendable total because of the bowling strength we got,” he added.

Asked if the team led by Shikhar Dhawan had plans for De Villiers, Laxman said: “As a captain you stick to your plan and back your bowlers.” However, for batsmen like Chris Gayle and De Villiers, nobody can set fields for them as they have the ability to hit even good balls, Laxman said.

“Special batsmen like AB and Chris Gayle — even if bowlers are bowling well, they can get boundaries and sixes which we saw — especially of Dale Steyn. They weren’t bad deliveries — they were excellent shots under pressure,” he said.

(PTI)