Heinrich Klaasen had already been the best batsman of the Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) team in the IPL 2023. With this century today against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), the South African keeper set himself miles apart from his teammates.
On a pitch where 4 of SRH’s 5 wickets fell to slower balls and bowlers (3 to spinners and one to a dipping slower ball from Harshal Patel), Klaasen smoked a sizzling century. Klaasen smashed 104 runs off 51 balls, walloping 8 cracking fours and 6 cleanly hit sixes. The next best score in SRH’s batting was of 27* by Harry Brook. The next best after that was of 18 by Aiden Markram.
So gobsmacking was his stroke-making and audacity that even the RCB fans, who had been praying for a victory and a low score for SRH in this crucial encounter to keep their playoff hopes strong, stood up and applauded.
So astonishing was this century from Klaasen – the 4th hundred from an SRH batsman in the IPL – that ‘God of Cricket’ Sachin Tendulkar took to Twitter to acknowledge the brilliance of this knock.
Tendulkar was elated to see Klaasen get a majority of his runs from “traditional batting” and conventional shots. The Indian batting great was also impressed with Klaasen’s footwork and clarity of footwork, especially against the spinners who got help from the surface.
“IPL is a mix of creative and traditional batting. Today has been a Klaas-ic display of traditional batting. Klaasen’s footwork has been simple and uncomplicated, one of the best I’ve seen in the recent past. Treat to watch!” Sachin Tendulkar tweeted.
Here, check out Sachin Tendulkar’s tweet on Heinrich Klaasen:
IPL is a mix of creative and traditional batting. Today has been a Klaas-ic display of traditional batting. Klaasen’s footwork has been simple and uncomplicated, one of the best I’ve seen in the recent past.
Treat to watch!#SRHvRCB #IPL2023 pic.twitter.com/mUVRTRxsYh
— Sachin Tendulkar (@sachin_rt) May 18, 2023
Speaking at the mid-innings break, Heinrich Klaasen said: “Pretty special feeling. Little bit slower than the previous wickets. Little bit stoppiness from spinners. Trying to keep it as simple as possible (his method). Sometimes I search for flow with my hands, and the movement up and down causes inconsistency. So tried to keep hands as still as possible. Would love to say we’re above par. They’ve got a fantastic batting unit. If we get couple of wickets early it should be enough.”