After a hard-fought win over Kings XI Punjab, Sunrisers Hyderabad will look to continue their winning momentum when they take on Delhi Daredevils in their home match at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium at Hyderabad on Wednesday.
On Monday against Kings XI Punjab, SRH skipper David Warner carried his bat on a tricky Hyderabad surface to set up a much-needed win for the defending champions, but it was Purple Cap holder Bhuvneshwar who swing the match with a career-best 5/19, which included the wicket of the heroic Manan Vohra for 95 off 50 balls in the penultimate over. It is that kind of performance from Bhuvneshwar which has kept SRH as one of the teams to beat, carrying on from the success of their bowling unit last season when they won the IPL title.
Whereas, Daredevils are coming off defeat to table-toppers Kolkata Knight Riders at home, with Manish Pandey hitting an bullish unbeaten 69 to chase down a target of 170 with four wickets and one delivery remaining. Closing out nail-biters like that is going to become imperative for all teams struggling to catch-up with KKR, SRH and Mumbai Indians. Daredevils will hope to make it a hat-trick of wins over SRH, whom they beat both times in 2016 but overall trail 3-5 in head-to-head clashes.
On the contrary, the Sunrisers bowling attack is running like a well-oiled machine, spearheaded by Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s dream form. Rashid Khan’s inclusion has been a masterstroke, while the likes of Ashish Nehra and Mustafizur Rahman have been doing their job.
The Delhi Daredevils’ batting has seen one batsman stand up and play a solid knock to anchor the innings. Chris Morris can strike a few lusty blows to end the innings with a flourish. It will be a contest between the Sunrisers’ batting and Delhi’s bowling attack.
If Sunrisers Hyderabad bat first:
Predicted score: 160
David Warner has been in top form with the bat, clinching the orange cap in the process. His form at the top bodes well for the team, he made on a sluggish pitch in the last game. While Dhawan has looked sedate, Yuvraj Singh has blown hot and cold throughout. Naman Ojha showed what he is capable of in the final few overs with his lusty blows, having Deepak Hooda for company.
The Delhi Daredevils bowling has a healthy mix of pace and guile, with speedsters like Pat Cummins sharing the ball with a crafty Zaheer Khan and Chris Morris. Amit Mishra can always be banked upon in the middle overs.
If Delhi Daredevils bat first:
Predicted score: 150
The Daredevils’ batsmen haven’t exactly performed as a unit, with one batsman hogging the limelight in each of the innings. With Shreyas Iyer’s return, the batting looks more assured, although there are increased calls to promote Rishabh Pant up the order so that he has more deliveries to play with.
The bowling is carried by ever-reliable Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who has to his assistance the likes of Ashish Nehra and Mustafizur Rahman. There is no out and out pacer in the team, but it hardly matter for SRH, who are content with fielding the medium pacers along with Rashid Khan, who has been the find of the season.
Predicted winners: Sunrisers Hyderabad