Defending IPL champions Sunrisers Hyderabad were put to the sword by a certain Mahendra Singh Dhoni in Pune.
David Warner’s team now come travel down to Bangalore where they will take on the Royal Challengers Bangalore, another team which will be smarting after they were pushed into ignominy by the Kolkata Knight Riders at the Eden Gardens where the famed RCB-batting line-up was bundled out for a measly 49.
However, SRH would know that they cannot take RCB for granted especially when they are playing in front of a raucous Bangalore crowd. All-in-all, both teams will come into this match on the back of crushing defeats and this match could well define their journey this season.
Here is the predicted XI of David Warner’s side:
David Warner has been batting with purpose but has not been getting to that decisive score over the past few matches. A firing David Warner is paramount to SRH and at the Chinnaswamy, his wide blade will have to do the talking to set the tone for the rest of the match. Also, his captaincy seems to follow a pattern and a confident Warner with the bat bodes well for Warner the captain.
Shikhar Dhawan is probably playing for a spot in the Champions Trophy and to be fair to him he has looked in good touch in the tournament so far without making that match-defining or eye-catching performance. In 7 matches so far, he has scored 235 runs at an average of 33.57 with a strike rate of 118.09. The time is ripe for him to up the ante in the match against Royal Challengers Bangalore and with the injury to KL Rahul the opening slot is up for grabs.
Kane Williamson has added solidity to the middle order and his spot at number 3 could be a pivotal number for SRH. He is a perfect foil to the audacious stroke play of David Warner and Shikhar Dhawan and with his ability to manoeuvre the fields at will he becomes a crucial cog to the hopes of the defending champions. He also brings leadership credential to the table and can offer viable inputs on the fields to David Warner.
Yuvraj Singh started off the tournament with a bang against the Royal Challengers Bangalore but has not yet maintained the momentum the Sunrisers would love him to be back to his belligerent best. Also, personally for Yuvraj, his form would be crucial as the selectors will sit down to pick a team for the upcoming Champions Trophy.
Moises Henriques will move down the order to accommodate Williamson at number 3 but he is good enough to hold his own at any position with the bat and the fact that he has been included in the Australian squad for the Champions Trophy will lift him to perform a more crucial role both with the bat and ball.
Deepak Hooda is being persisted with by the management since they know he has the potential to be the finisher with the bat, a reliable offie and a gun fielder out in the outfield. However, the man from Baroda has not justice to the promise or the chances provided to him so far and has not managed to put his hand up and play a decisive role with either the bat or ball and sooner rather than later he has to repay some faith the team has invested in him.
Naman Ojha has been a permanent fixture for the Sunrisers behind the stumps and for some reason he has not been given enough chances to prove himself with the bat. He is far better than a slogger and should be utilised as a floater in the batting line-up as he has the pedigree and can play innings of substance for the team.
Bipul Sharma is an unfancied name but he always gets the job done with the ball. The left-arm bowler keeps hitting the right areas and asks the batsmen to come at him and more often that not entices them into a sense of false security. On a sluggish Chinnaswamy surface, he can be a difficult component to negotiate.
Rashid Khan has been a star this season. However, the batsmen seem to have got a hang of all his tricks and are playing with him with a bit of caution. However, with his leg-breaks, he remains a big threat and the new Bangalore surface could assist him in spinning a web around the stroke makers of the Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar has been one of the top performers in this IPL and is justifiably wearing the purple cap. He is to bowling what Warner is to batting for the Sunrisers and his 4 overs more often than not has a resounding influence on the match.
Mohammad Siraj is a very romantic journey and he has shown glimpses of his promise in the few matches he has played so far. However, he needs to take his game to the next level and with the backing of the management he has to now pick up wickets both with the new as well as with the older ball.