Hyderabad, April 29: David Warner starred in his final appearance in this year's Indian Premier League, helping Sunrisers Hyderabad record a clinical 45-run win over Kings XI Punjab.
The Australia batsman, who will miss the closing stages of the campaign to prepare for the Cricket World Cup, made a top score of 81 in Hyderabad's imposing total of 212-6.
Opening partner Wriddhiman Saha contributed 28 - hitting three fours and a six during his brief 13-ball innings - while Manish Pandey added 36 to the cause, putting on 82 with Warner for the second wicket.
KL Rahul made 79 in reply, but Kings XI never threatened to succeed in pursuit of such a sizeable score, particularly once the dangerous Chris Gayle departed for just four at the start of the third over.
Mayank Agarwal (27) and Nicholas Pooran (21) contributed to the cause, yet Kings XI's chase was curtailed by losing three wickets to leg-spinner Rashid Khan, including skipper Ravichandran Ashwin for a first-ball duck.
Khaleel Ahmed claimed 3-40 as the innings subsided following Rahul's departure, eventually ending on 167-8.
Victory helps Hyderabad consolidate fourth place in the table, while Kings XI six two points behind them in what looks set to be a hotly contested race to reach the play-offs.
What a victory here in Hyderabad for the @SunRisers.
They win by 45 runspic.twitter.com/4fQEh5rsTZ— IndianPremierLeague (@IPL) April 29, 2019
YOU'VE BEEN WARNER-ED
Warner rounded out a hugely impressive IPL campaign with a ninth score of 50 or more in 12 innings.
The left-hander hit a pair of sixes and seven fours in his 56-ball knock on Monday, taking his tally for the year to 692 runs. He sits comfortably clear on the top-scorers list, with Rahul his nearest challenger on 520.
A second century of the season appeared on the cards for Warner until he sliced Ashwin to backward point at the end of the 16th over.
Still, his departure from India - following on from former opening partner Jonny Bairstow's return to England - leaves a sizeable void at the top of the Sunrisers' batting order.
A BEAUTY FROM BHUVI!
Bhuvneshwar Kumar actually caught Pooran twice in the 13th over.
The India seamer held on to a pull shot at deep fine leg when the batsman went after a short ball from Khaleel, only to step over the boundary rope as he failed to halt his momentum in time.
However, Kumar judged his second attempt four balls later perfectly, moving in from his position in the deep to claim a top edge from the same batsman with the aid of a dive, snatching the ball just prior to it reaching the turf.
Rahul battled on bravely after the fall of the third wicket, but his lone hand could not save Kings XI from a third straight defeat. They have just two games remaining to break into the top four and extend their season.