While Sunrisers Hyderabad qualified for the playoff stage last season, their opposition on Monday found themselves at a precarious position, finishing last with just 11 points. However, a change of personnel and a change of season might prompt a change of fortune for RCB as they take on SRH.
Sunrisers Hyderabad - L L L W L
It doesn’t look very pretty, does it? Sunrisers Hyderabad enters this edition of the competition on the back of four losses out of their five games. Despite having the likes of Jonny Bairstow and David Warner at the top of the order, it is pretty appalling how the franchise has found themselves in such a precarious position, with even Rashid Khan helping them with the ball. This season, a new coach and a complete overhaul of the side as they would face Royal Challengers Bangalore in their very first game of the season. It might go all good or terribly wrong for the new-look middle-order.
Royal Challengers Bangalore - W NR L W W
This is a side which finished on the bottom of the table or as called, the wooden spoon winners from last season. However, their late resurgence towards the end of the season was pretty impressive, including wins against Kings XI Punjab, Chennai Super Kings, and Sunrisers Hyderabad. Prior to these three wins, the franchise also managed to close out their contest against Kolkata Knight Riders, proving that they are no leftovers. This season, a new challenge for their redeveloped batting unit as they aim to finally break the trophy drought.
Sunrisers Hyderabad - Jonny Bairstow
It has to be one of the two, David Warner or Jonny Bairstow to bestow the damage upon the RCB bowlers in sublime fashion. While for most other seasons, it would have been pretty obvious to pick Warner as the key batsmen, this season the things have changed. Warner is on the back of a terrible outing for the national team, with scores of 24,6,6 and 0 in his last four innings. Meanwhile, his partner at the other end has scored 112, 0, 84, 55 in his last four innings which makes him a favourite in this encounter. Last season, the English opener left an impression, scoring 445 runs in 10 games, at an average of 55.62, which goes on to show his pedigree, so find him ready for the contest against RCB.
Royal Challengers Bangalore - Devdutt Padikkal
A surprise pick, to be honest, Devdutt Padikkal has his turn waiting for nearly two years now, since being picked in the 2018 Auction by the franchise. While his number was never rung in the last season, this season, Virat Kohli has hinted at picking the southpaw as the opener instead of Parthiv Patel. Moreover, what has prompted Kohli is Padikkal’s numbers in India’s domestic T20 competition, Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. In the 2019-20 edition of the competition, the left-hander topped the run charts, scoring 580 runs in 333 deliveries for Karnataka, in just 12 innings, which goes on to show what he is capable of. Alongside that, the hunger of not having made an appearance will surely put him on tracks to get off to an explosive start.
Sunrisers Hyderabad - Bhuvneshwar Kumar
While it would have surely been Rashid Khan for most of them, the leg-spinner has struggled in the past against the likes of Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers, who have tonked the spinner for the extra mileage. The leg-spinner has picked up seven wickets against RCB, in just six appearances but the experience of seamer Bhuvneshwar Kumar is unparalleled. In the 12 games that the seamer has bowled against RCB, he’s picked up 14 wickets, suggesting that it could be his night when the two sides take on each other.
Royal Challengers Bangalore - Yuzvendra Chahal
It’s another page of our obvious answers and in this one, we have none other than Chahal as the key bowler for Royal Challengers Bangalore. If the opening game between CSK and MI is of any indication, it is going to be a crucial game for Chahal and RCB against SRH. Single-handedly Chahal has picked up the RCB side in the past few years, taking the lead on him, striking with the ball. In 12 games against SRH, the Haryana leggie has picked up 10 wickets and last season, ended up as the side’s leading wicket-taker, with 18 wickets. It’s now an obvious ploy and Chahal would be on the prowl.
Sunrisers Hyderabad Squad:Kane Williamson, David Warner (c), Jonny Bairstow (wk), Manish Pandey, Mohammad Nabi, Priyam Garg, Vijay Shankar, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Virat Singh, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Basil Thampi, Abhishek Sharma, Billy Stanlake, Sandeep Sharma, Shahbaz Nadeem, Shreevats Goswami, Siddarth Kaul, K Khaleel Ahmed, T Natarajan, Mitchell Marsh, Bavanaka Sandeep, Fabian Allen, Abdul Samad, Sanjay Yadav, Rashid Khan
Royal Challengers Bangalore Squad: Virat Kohli (c), AB de Villiers, Parthiv Patel (wk), Aaron Finch, Josh Philippe, Chris Morris, Moeen Ali, Mohammed Siraj, Shahbaz Ahmed, Devdutt Padikkal, Yuzvendra Chahal, Navdeep Saini, Dale Steyn, Pawan Negi, Isuru Udana, Shivam Dube, Umesh Yadav, Gurkeerat Singh Mann, Washington Sundar, Pavan Deshpande, Adam Zampa
Probable XI :
SRH: David Warner (captain), Jonny Bairstow, Manish Pandey, Vijay Shankar, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Siddarth Kaul, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Khaleel Ahmed, Shahbaz Nadeem
RCB: Aaron Finch, Devdutt Padikkal, Virat Kohli (c), AB de Villiers (wk), Gurkeerat Singh Mann, Chris Morris, Moeen Ali, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Umesh Yadav, Navdeep Saini
Venue: Dubai International Cricket Stadium
When to Watch: Sep 21, 7.30 PM IST
Where to Watch: Star Sports Network and Hotstar (in India)