There was no now-that's-some-stunning batting, blink-and-you-miss-a-six crackerjack performances in the IPL 2014 match between the Rajasthan Royals and the Sunrisers Hyderabad in Ahmedabad on Thursday night.
Yet, there was plenty of action, and then some. A hat-trick that never felt like a hat-trick, one of the most unbelievably comical run outs you are ever likely to witness, some outstanding bowling and brilliant fielding, with the end result being a much-needed win for the Sunrisers.
Put into bat first, SRH managed to put up just 134 for nine in their 20 overs on a sluggish wicket, with Shane Watson grabbing a hat-trick, the second straight from a Royals bowler, and Amit Mishra providing YouTube with plenty of hits courtesy the most amazing run out.
Easy chase for the Royals surely then. Well, the Sunrisers made a habit of winning games last season by defending low totals after their batsmen had let them down; they are certainly on their way to making a habit of it in IPL 2014 as well, as the Hyderabad franchise bowled brilliantly to bowl Royals out for just 102 to fashion a big 32-run victory.
Dale Steyn (two for 31), Bhuvneshwar Kumar (four for 14), Amit Mishra (4-0-13-0), Karn Sharma (4-0-20-1) and Moises Henriques (one for 11) were all outstanding with the ball, while the fielding, led by the speedy David Warner, was faultless as the Sunrisers romped home to their third win in seven matches this season, leaving the Royals on ten points with five wins in eight matches.
The Royals made a mess of the chase really, with Ajinkya Rahane falling in just the third ball of the innings, flashing at a wide delivery from Bhuvneshwar Kumar and picking out David Warner at point perfectly.
Sanju Samson came in and hit a boundary off Dale Steyn's first over, before taking the best fast bowler in the world for a gorgeous six over long-off in his next. Steyn would pick up Samson's partner at the other end, though, with Karun Nair (12, 9b, 3x4) finding an outside edge.
Samson (16, 16b, 1x4, 1x6), though, did not last too long either, failing to pick Karn Sharma, with the leg-spinner striking timber, before Shane Watson (11, 10b, 1x4) was sent packing by Moises Henriques, leaving RR on 41 for four in the seventh over.
Rajasthan desperately needed a partnership and Steven Smith and Stuart Binny provided that with a 37-run alliance from 43 balls, where ones and twos were very much the norm, with Karn Sharma and Mishra strangling the runs. The two dangerous finishers were taking the Royals to the final overs, before unleashing their power-hitting, but in stepped David Warner to dismiss Binny (12, 19b) with a magical piece of fielding, throwing down the stumps from well outside the 30-yard circle.
With Smith (22, 33b) waiting and waiting before going for the big shots as the required run rate kept climbing to well over ten, the Australian's decision to bide his time worked against him, as Steyn came back and picked up the dangerous Royals batsman to tilt the game completely in the Sunrisers Hyderabad's favour.
After Steyn's wicket-taking 16th over, from which he conceded only three runs, RR were now staring at a big 51 runs needed from the final 24 balls with James Faulkner and Rajat Bhatia, two players capable of hitting the big shots, at the crease.
With big bowlers in Bhuvneshwar and Steyn still to come, though, the Sunrisers were always at an advantage, with the former sending Faulkner packing in the 18th over, while picking up a couple more wickets in the over, dismissing Bhatia and Kane Richardson.
The match was definitely sealed with those three wickets with the Sunrisers taking an impressive two points from Ahmedabad.
Earlier, the Sunrisers Hyderabad batsmen failed to put up a total of note yet again, with none of their big three batsmen carrying on to make a big knock.
Shikhar Dhawan (33, 20b, 7x4) started like a house on fire, caressing seven boundaries in the first four overs, before failing to make full use of the blazing start as Shane Watson picked the first wicket of his hat-trick, castling the left-hander by clipping off-stump.
Aaron Finch, who was watching Dhawan stroke boundary after boundary from the other end, only faced eight balls in the Powerplay overs, with the Australian, looking to take charge, falling to the wily Rajat Bhatia in the seventh.
It was pretty much a wicket every couple of overs for the Sunrisers from there, with Bhatia (4-0-23-3) and Pravin Tambe (4-0-21-1) enjoying themselves thoroughly, as KL Rahul, David Warner and Naman Ojha all walked back to the pavilion.
Henriques, brought in for Darren Sammy, could not get his bat smashing the ball to the boundary line at will like the West Indian does so often, with Irfan Pathan also unable to put his blade to good use, looking like a shadow's shadow of the player who made such an impact a few years back and seemed perfect for the shortest format.
Henriques was Watson's second victim in his hat-trick, in the 17th over of the innings, 13 overs after his first wicket, with the fellow Australian finding Rahane in the deep. Watson didn't really look like he was aware that he was on a hat-trick, but it didn't matter as Karn Sharma obliged with a nice thin edge to the wicketkeeper to ensure the Royals enjoyed a second hat-trick in as many games.
The hat-trick, though, was not the most exciting part of the first innings, with Amit Mishra, no doubt, booking his place in the world of viral videos with the most ridiculous run outs you are likely to see. The leg-spinner, coming in after Dale Steyn had ran himself out in the final over, failed to make contact off a delivery from James Faulkner, but ran for a bye, with Pathan at the other end not even remotely bothered to go for a run.
Not exactly over the moon at Pathan's lack of interest, Mishra had given up thinking Samson would hit the stumps, which the Royals keeper didn't, with the ball going to Faulkner, who took aim and missed with Mishra still out of the crease, more concerned about berating Pathan. The Sunrisers man could have got back in at the third time of asking, but he was still more worried about making his feeling clear over his partner's lack of desire to go for a single, that Samson, with the ball back to him after Faulkner's miss, had time to hit the stumps.
The comedy of all comedies was what the Sunrisers took with them to the innings break, but SRH, led by Mishra, managed to pull out a big bowling performance to eventually ease through.