New Delhi: Sunrisers Hyderabad's skipper Cameron White feels his team enjoyed a "fantastic" journey in the Indian Premier League even though it could not make the final after losing to Rajasthan Royals in the 'Eliminator', here.
"It's been a great effort from Sunrisers this season. We won our 10 games. We made the play-offs. It's a new franchise, new players coming together. It's been a fantastic and successful campaign," White told reporters at the post-match press conference last night after his team lost by four wickets.
"With the new auction coming up, don't know who will remain here. There could be a new set of players, whatever the franchise decides on, we will be strong enough next year," he added.
Sunrisers had qualified for the play-offs after defeating Kolkata Knight Riders in their last league game. White said they fell short by 15-20 runs on a slow and dry Kotla wicket.
"We were 15-20 runs short of the total. We needed 150 on the board," he said.
"I was expecting a really flat wicket; the other night saw 190 being scored whatever the second innings score was. So, I was expecting something similar but this wicket had few more cracks and was probably quite dry.
"It was hard to score at times, I was happy to win the toss; we were just outplayed tonight and did not score in the middle areas which cost us the match," he added.
This edition saw Sunrisers clicking as a bowling unit, and it was their batting which let them down on most of the occasions.
"130 was a pretty good score as most of the time in Hyderabad; we scored close to it. There's no doubt that batsmen needed to step up in some respect. Tonight's was another example of that," White explained.
The Australian cricketer praised Brad Hodge for single-handedly guiding Rajasthan Royals into the second play-off with his unbeaten 29-ball 54.
"He played very well. He took the spin on initially and scored against our fast bowlers in the final overs. That's what you expect from Brad Hodge; he is still leading the run-scoring in T20 cricket, isn't he. He is pretty handy No. 7 batsman coming in. Hodge a world class player and played a great innings," he said.
White also came out in support of the team's young domestic players even though did not inspire much confidence with their rather average performances.
One such example was Hanuma Vihari, who scored at less than 90 strike rate but was still persisted with all 16 games.
"One of the great things about the IPL is that it exposes this young Indian talent and if they can come through some high-pressure tournaments like this, it's great for the future of the Indian cricket. Someone like Vihari will be a better player in the future."