IPL 2019: David Warner-Jonny Bairstow alliance like Rooney-Ronaldo, reckons Eoin Morgan

"That is the beauty of playing franchise cricket."

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David Warner & Jonny Bairstow
David Warner & Jonny Bairstow. (Photo Source: Twitter)

England’s limited-overs skipper Eoin Morgan has hailed the partnership between Jonny Bairstow and David Warner for Sunrisers Hyderabad. The last year’s finalists have stormed to the top of the table in the ongoing season of the Indian Premier League with a comprehensive 5-wicket win over Delhi Capitals. The win was Sunrisers’ third of the season in four games after they started their campaign with a defeat against Kolkata Knight Riders. One of the reasons behind Sunrisers’ impressive start to the season is the form of their openers – Warner and Bairstow.

Both the players have put their Ashes rivalry behind to forge a highly successful partnership at the top of the order. In the first three games of the season, they shared century-plus stands in all the games. The streak came to an end on Thursday when they added 64 runs for the first wicket in the 5-wicket win over Delhi Capitals. But what has caught the attention more than the two openers’ form is the camaraderie between them.

The sight of Warner hugging Bairstow after the latter’s century was unthinkable even before the start of the IPL after what happened on the last Ashes. Bairstow was involved in several controversies in Australia and had also allegedly punched Warner’s opening partner Cameron Bancroft in a bar in Perth. But perhaps this is the beauty of this IPL as the bitter rivals have buried the hatchet to make sure their team does well.

‘Beauty of playing franchise cricket’

When it comes to playing franchise cricket, there are very English players as experienced as Eoin Morgan as he hailed the impact of playing franchise cricket. And it seems like Morgan is mighty impressed with Warner and Bairstow’s friendship as he likened the pair with the legendary duo of Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney at Manchester United.

“The two of them are team-mates for the moment but that is the beauty of playing franchise cricket,” Morgan told ESPNcricinfo. “You do get to rub shoulders with guys you never thought you’d play with.

“Thinking about it since in different sports, in football it happens all the time. Compare Portugal’s game where Ronaldo got Wayne Rooney sent off [at 2006 World Cup], and had to go back and play for Manchester United two weeks later. It’s trickier circumstances, but I’m sure Jonny is learning a huge amount from other guys that he’s rubbing shoulders with,” Morgan added.

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