IPL 2019, SRH v RR: 5 key battles to watch out for
The SRH vs RR rivalry will be rekindled in the 8th match of IPL 2019 at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium at Hyderabad. Both teams are coming off a loss in their opening match, where they failed to reach the finish line despite dominating for a majority of the match.
SRH looked all set to win their opening match against KKR till they ran into a rampaging Andre Russell. The SRH bowling, which is good at defending targets, conceded 53 runs in 16 balls to lose the match.
Rajasthan Royals, on the other hand, would want to forget the Mankad incident and take the field with a fresh mind. They had a lot of positives in the first match but would face a tough challenge against a good SRH side at their home ground.
Expected Playing XI: SRH
David Warner, Wriddhiman Saha, Kane Williamson, Manish Pandey, Vijay Shankar, Shakib Al Hasan, Yusuf Pathan, Rashid Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Sandeep Sharma, Siddarth Kaul.
Expected Playing XI: RR
Jos Buttler, Ajinkya Rahane, Steve Smith, Sanju Samson, Ben Stokes, Rahul Tripathi, Krishnappa Gowtham, Shreyas Gopal, Jofra Archer, Dhawal Kulkarni, Jaydev Unadkat.
Here are the key battles that are likely to have a decisive impact on the match:
1. Jos Buttler vs Rashid Khan
Jos Buttler has been a tremendous opening batsman for the Rajasthan Royals in the IPL in a very short span of time. He is able to find the boundaries with a lot of ease in the powerplay and the middle overs.
Buttler would face a tough challenge from the young Rashid Khan, who would be a handful on the Hyderabad ground.
2. David Warner vs Jofra Archer
David Warner and Jofra Archer both had a very good opening game. Warner scored a spectacular 85 off 53 balls in his return to the IPL whereas Archer just gave away 17 runs in his 4 overs in a match where a lot of runs were scored.
They would both look to dominate each other as they are the key players of their team.
3. Ben Stokes vs Bhuvneshwar Kumar
Ben Stokes is one of the cleanest strikers in the death overs. He, however, has not had a very good time with the Rajasthan Royals in that role. He would look to set the record straight early this IPL but would be up against Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who has been a good death bowler for Hyderabad.
Bhuvneshwar had a bad match against KKR, and would want to bounce back quickly from that.
4. Kane Williamson vs Shreyas Gopal
Kane Williamson is expected to return to the SRH side after missing out the last match due to injury. He is expected to bat at No. 3, and would face a lot of spin from Rajasthan Royals. The way he handles the spinners in the middle overs would go a long way towards determining the outcome of the match.
5. Ajinkya Rahane vs Shakib Al Hasan
We all know Ajinkya Rahane is the most comfortable batting in the first 6 overs, when the field is up. After that, he mostly looks to rotate the strike and play the anchor role in the innings.
SRH would look to deny Rahane the singles against the spinners with the help of Shakib, and put pressure on the rest of the middle order batsmen.