Punjab Kings square off against Sunrisers Hyderabad in the 14th match of the 2021 season of the IPL and it will be played at the MA Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai on the 21st of April, 2021. The match will commence at 3:30 PM IST and it will be telecasted on the Stars Sports. Hotstar will be streaming the game live as well.
It is the turn of Punjab Kings (PBKS) to fly down to Chennai as they face Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in the second afternoon game of the season. Both sides have had a disappointing start to this season and occupy the bottom two slots in the points table.
PBKS almost bottled up their defence of 221 against Rajasthan Royals (RR) but somehow held their nerve to start their campaign with a four-run win. However, since then, they have lost two on the bounce. Chennai Super Kings (CSK) outplayed Punjab as KL Rahul and co just couldn’t get going with the bat and scored a mere 106/8. In the third game, Punjab did rack up 195 batting first against Delhi Capitals but it was never going to be enough on that Wankhede belter.
Hence, the Punjab bowling has been very expensive. The spinners have been ineffective and the overseas pacers have been poor. The Chepauk track might come as a relief but adapting to the slow nature will be the key for both the Punjab batters and the bowlers.
On the other hand, SRH are the only team in this competition without a win. The David Warner-led side haven’t been able to come to terms with the sluggish nature of the track in Chennai. They have batted second in each of their three games and have lost every game. However, the margins of defeat haven’t been that big. They lost to Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) by 10 runs while chasing 188. Against Royal Challengers (RCB), it was just six runs while chasing 150 and against Mumbai Indians (MI), it was 13 runs while chasing 151.
Hence, the SRH middle-order just hasn’t been able to force the pace. Moreover, the bowling has been inconsistent as well. Moreover, they have been poor at the death and have conceded a few too many in most of the games so far.
Thus, both sides will be looking to bounce back.
Probable Playing XIs
Punjab Kings: KL Rahul (c & wk), Mayank Agarwal, Chris Gayle, Deepak Hooda, Nicholas Pooran, Shahrukh Khan, Fabien Allen, Jhye Richardson, Murugan Ashwin/Ravi Bishnoi, Mohammed Shami, Arshdeep Singh
Sunrisers Hyderabad: David Warner (c), Jonny Bairstow (wk), Manish Pandey, Kane Williamson/Jason Holder, Vijay Shankar, Abhishek Sharma, Abdul Samad, Rashid Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shahbaz Nadeem, T Natarajan/Khaleel Ahmed
KL Rahul: KL Rahul is going to be a big captaincy favourite. The PBKS skipper has been churning out runs and fifties for fun. He has been supremely consistent at the top of the order and has been getting the big scores. In three games, Rahul has already scored 157 runs, including a couple of half-centuries. On sluggish Chepauk wickets, he will be key at the top of the order.
David Warner: David Warner is batting really well at the moment. After a failure in the first game, the SRH skipper got a fluent half-century against RCB and was looking good against MI as well as he scored 36. Moreover, Warner’s record against Punjab is stupendous. He has smashed 906 runs at an average of 53.29 and a strike-rate of 142.45 which includes 11 half-centuries. Thus, he will be a huge captaincy option.
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