About the Match
It was just about yesterday that Gujarat Lions received a 10-wicket mauling from Kolkata Knight Riders. They have a daunting task ahead of them as they face defending champions, Sunrisers Hyderabad, in what will be the second match for both the sides. It will be the first match of the day to be played at 4:00 pm IST. Hyderabad won their first match convincingly against Royal Challengers Bangalore at the same venue and will be looking to get to the top of the table with yet another win.
Hyderabad's pitch usually doesn't change much over the course of 40 Overs in a T20 game. Although the average first innings total hovers around 145-run mark, teams batting first have scored in the range of 200 in previous few games. Dew doesn't play a major role here so teams generally prefer to bat first as pitch tends to slow down, albeit a little. With the recent history of high first innings score, both the teams will prefer to bat first at this venue.
Apparently, Sunrisers Hyderabad has carried their last year's form into this year's tournament. They scored a humungous total of 207 runs in their first game, thanks to superb innings by Yuvraj Singh. Shikhar Dhawan too will be brimming with confidence as he scored quick 40-runs at the top of the order. Shikhar Dhawan unleashed himself in Watson's over as he smashed four consecutive boundaries.
The star of the night was Yuvraj Singh who hammered all the bowlers to all parts of the park and his form is going to play a vital role for Sunrisers Hyderabad. Henriques scored a well-knitted half century coming at crucial number three slot.
In the last edition of IPL, it was Sunrisers' bowling which got them through and it wasn't any different in the first game as well. Although Ashish Nehra was hammered in his first three overs, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar and Rashid Khan were brilliant. The duo of Nehra and Bhuvaneshwar wiped off the tail without too much of fuss.
Overall, Sunrisers is a well-balanced unit and with the addition of Rashid Khan, their bowling has grown stronger. With Yuvraj, Dhawan, and Henriques in fine form and Warner well and truly capable of hitting it big, this team is certainly the team to beat in this tournament.
Likely Starting XI: David Warner (c)
- Shikhar Dhawan - Moises Henriques
- Yuvraj Singh - Deepak Hooda - Ben Cutting - Rashid Khan
- Naman Ojha - Bhuvaneshwar Kumar - Bipul Sharma - Ashish Nehra.
It was all about batting in their first match at Rajkot where they were thrashed by KKR by 10 wickets. Lions batting fired as per their expectations, but their bowling appeared one-dimensional. They'd be looking to make some changes going into this match.
Gujarat Lions played batsmen at all of allowed four overseas positions and the inexperience clearly was reflected in the bowling department. All of their bowlers were hammered and no one was able to put any sort of pressure on Lynn and Gambhir pair. Dwayne Smith might make way for James Faulkner to fill the void in their bowling.
Their batting, however, did well and posted a total of 183 runs which looked competitive at halfway stage. Suresh Raina was their standout performer as he scored 68 runs in 51 balls. Dinesh Karthik added 47 runs to the total in just 25 deliveries. McCullum and Roy looked good at the top of the order and we expect no change there.
All in all, the last year's league table toppers clearly missed the services of Bravo and Faulkner in the first match. While Bravo is still recovering from injury, the addition of Faulkner helps their bowling.
Likely Starting XI: Jason Roy - Brendon McCullum
- Suresh Raina (c) - Aaron Finch
- Dinesh Karthik (wk) - James Faulkner
- Nathu Singh - Praveen Kumar - Shadab Jakati - Dhawal Kulkarni - Shivil Kaushik.
The Numbers Game
- Sunrisers have won all their three matches against Gujarat Lions. All their wins came while chasing.
- Bhuvaneshwar Kumar has been the most succesfful bowler against Lions. He has taken eight wickets at an economy rate of 7.00
Sunrisers and Lions are coming into this game after a victory and a loss respectively. Lions received a heart-wrenching win which could easily demolish the morale of any team. IPL is a long tournament and teams have bounced back in the past. While the Lions certainly are capable of bouncing back, the form of Sunrisers might just stop them from doing so. Considering the form and team on-paper, we expect Hyderbad to register yet another victory and go at the top of the table