Both Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad started their IPL campaign this year in similar styles by losing their first match of the season. Now the two teams are set to face-off at Hyderabad tomorrow and will look to get back to winning ways.
One main concern for SRH would be the availability of its skipper Kane Williamson, who missed the first match because of an injury. He is expected to make a return, which will bolster the team’s composition. Despite Jonny Bairstow and David Warner, providing a good start if Williamson returns, Bairstow is expected to make way for him.
Under stand-in skipper, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, in their previous game against Kolkata Knight Riders, Sunrisers Hyderabad played well and it was just a magnificent knock from Andre Russell and some poor execution in the death by the bowlers that took the game away from them. Boasting of a strong-bowling lineup, the Sunrisers Hyderabad will look to challenge the Royals at their home venue.
Two key men in focus are disgraced Aussies, David Warner and Steve Smith. While Warner showed his form in the last game, smashing an unbeaten 85, Steve Smith is yet to fire and the teams will be wary of the threat they can impose on the opposition when they take on the field.
Rajasthan Royals will look to address one key issue, in the last match against Kings XI Punjab, chasing 185, after a good show by their openers, Jos Buttler and skipper Ajinkya Rahane. Royals lost their last seven wickets within 16 runs. They will look to sort their problems before they take the field for the second game.
Jos Buttler’s form has been a big positive for the men in pink as he has continued his form from the last season and the batting will once again depend entirely on him, who is charged up especially after the mankading in the previous game.
Rajasthan’s bowling need to step up. With Jaydev Unadkat, Jofra Archer, Dhawal Kulkarni and Ben Stokes among pacers and Shreyas Gopal and K Gowtham working in tandem in spin, it is a potent attack but compared to the strong-line up of Sunrisers Hyderabad, comprising Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Siddarth Kaul, Sandeep Sharma, Rashid Khan and Shakib Al Hasan, it looks weak on paper but both the teams will look to perform to their potential to open their account in the points table.