Back-to-back losses denting their confidence, defending champions Sunrisers Hyderabad would look to put their campaign back on track when they take on Kings XI Punjab in their IPL match in Hyderabad on a double header Monday.
The Sunrisers had a perfect start this season by winning their first two games—against Royal Challengers Bangalore and Gujarat Lions—at home. However, they lost their next two matches away from home—against Mumbai Indians and Kolkata Knight Riders.
It would be an opportunity for SRH to bounce back on their home turf. The team possessed one of the best bowling attacks in IPL-10 with the likes of pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Afghanistan’s Rashid Khan, the experienced Ashish Nehra, Ben Cutting, Bangladesh’s Mustafizzur Rahman and all-rounders Yuvraj Singh and Moises Henriques in their ranks.
Bhuvneshwar has been outstanding, especially in death overs, and the young Rashid has emerged as a crucial bowler for the side with his unique leg-spin bowling.
The other bowlers, including Ashish Nehra, Ben Cutting and Rahman, can put any batsmen to test. Bangladeshi pacer Rahman, who conceded 19 runs from his first over to return with poor figures of 2.4-0-34-0 against Mumbai, would be keen to make amends and demonstrate his capabilities.
SRH openers David Warner and Shikhar Dhawan have been giving good starts to their innings but the other batsmen, especially those who batted at the middle order would do well by raising the bar.
The middle order, comprising Moises Henriques, seasoned Yuvraj Singh and Deepak Hooda, did put up a strong show to see their side romp home in the first two matches.
On the points table, both SRH and KXIP have four points each from an equal number of matches.
The Punjab side has also won their first two matches and lost the next two, much like SRH, and they too would aim to get their momentum back.
The visiting side have some dangerous batsmen, especially the three Ms—David Miller, Glenn Maxwell and Eoin Morgan— who can pile up runs.
Their bowling unit includes the reliable Mohit Sharma and Ishant Sharma who is familiar with the conditions in Hyderabad as he played for SRH and also Deccan Chargers earlier.
Likely playing XI:
Kings XI Punjab: Glenn Maxwell (captain), David Miller, Manan Vohra, Shaun Marsh, Sandeep Sharma, KC Cariappa, Varun Aaron, Axar Patel, Darren Sammy, Wriddhiman Saha(wk), Ishant Sharma.
Sunrisers Hyderabad: David Warner (captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Moises Henriques, Deepak Hooda, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mustafizur Rahman, Ashish Nehra, Naman Ojha (wk), Rashid Khan, Yuvraj Singh, Bipul Sharma.