Harry Brook celebrate after reaching his century in IPL 2023© BCCI
Harry Brook produced a sublime performance for Sunrisers Hyderabad to slam the first century of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 during the encounter against Kolkata Knight Riders at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Friday. The England international took just 55 balls to reach the impressive milestone and his innings was adorned with 12 fours and 3 huge sixes. Brook, who was picked by SRH for a massive Rs 13.25 crore in the auction ahead of the season, did not have a good start to the tournament. However, he was in full flow on a flat pitch as the right-hander dominated the KKR bowlers and paced his innings almost perfectly. The only blemish in his innings was a dropped catch by Suyash Sharma and the chance proved to be extremely costly for the hosts as Brook was at his destructive best at the Eden Gardens.
Twitter users were stunned by the performance produced by Brook on the pitch and both experts and fans alike took to social media to laud the youngster for his historic achievement.
Opted to bowl, KKR fielding was also a big letdown as Skipper Aiden Markram also played an impactful innings in the middle when he raced to a 26-ball fifty as the duo stitched together 72 runs from 47 balls.
After Markram’s departure, young left-handed batter Abhishek Sharma (32; 17b) gave a fine support as the duo also added 72 runs (33b) to pile on KKR’s misery.
Heinrich Klaasen then played a cameo of 16 not out in six balls as SRH dished out a superlative batting display after KKR opted to bowl.
Barring Caribbeans, Sunil Narine (4-0-28-0) and Andre Russell (2.1-0-22-3) who pulled a muscle and could not complete his overs, none of the KKR bowlers failed to impress.
The day fully belonged to the English batter, who carried his bat replicating his success in Pakistan Super League (PSL), where he had scored 264 runs for Lahore Qalandars in eight innings, which included a century, at a strike rate of 171.4 in 2022 edition.
Brook also has eye-popping numbers in Tests and has scored 809 runs with four centuries and three fifties in 10 innings.
KKR may have missed the trick by giving him some easy pace fodder to begin with as Brook was happy to take Yadav to cleaners, while the fiery Ferguson was wayward, both conceding 14 runs in their opening overs.
From 43 for no loss in three overs, Sunil Narine managed to drag them in a tidy fourth over that perfectly set it up for Andre Russell to inflict a double blow.
Bowling for the first time this season, the Jamaican dismissed Mayank Agarwal (9; 13b) straightway before pulling a muscle.
Russell however managed to finish the over and took the wicket of in-form Rahul Tripathi in the last-ball to give KKR the vital opening.
But Brook and skipper Markram batted sensibly, especially against Narine and raced to quick fifties to keep their run-rate near the 10-run mark.
The SRH skipper gave Brook a fine support and negotiated the middle overs well in an entertaining 72-run partnership that came off just 47 balls.
(With PTI inputs)
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