Dubai International Cricket Stadium will host Sunrisers Hyderabad taking on Kings XI Punjab on Thursday. This will be the 10th game at this venue in IPL 2020. Both teams come into this game on the back a loss in their last respective games. Also, both these teams are at the bottom half of the points table. While Punjab is last at the moment, Hyderabad is placed sixth.
Sunrisers Hyderabad lost their previous match against Mumbai Indians in Sharjah. They failed to track down 209 as their middle-order failed to step-up. SRH are having concerns over their middle-order right from the start of the tournament.
They have been a top-heavy batting side much like RCB and the game against MI, brought this discussion to light once again. However, bringing in Kane Williamson has helped them address the issue to some extent. Williamson along with Priyam Garg and Abhishek Sharma needs to be more consistent for the Sunrisers if they are to go a long way in this tournament.
Their bowling attack will look weak now after Bhuvneshwar Kumar, was ruled out of the tournament. Rashid Khan, Siddhart Kaul and Khaleel Ahmed will have to take up more responsibilities with the ball now. It will be interesting to see if Prithvi Raj Yarra will be given a game straightaway. They have options in the form of Fabian Allen, Mohammed Nabi and Jason Holder waiting in the wings as well.
Kings XI Punjab have tapered off a little bit after their Super Over win over Delhi Capitals in their first game of the season, They have lost four on the bounce since then. Death bowling is their prime concern heading into this game. Chris Jordan, who played the last game to address the same against CSK, went for plenty himself as Punjab are facing a huge dilemma in finding the right balance for the side.
Batting wise, they have been heavily reliant on their openers, KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal. Both of them have been in good touch so far in the tournament. However, it’s not showing up as their team is at the bottom. Glenn Maxwell is still playing on reputation and needs to come good against SRH.
Head to Head: Sunrisers Hyderabad vs Kings XI Punjab
In the 14 games played between the two sides, SRH has won 10 games while Punjab only four. Between 2015 to 2017 IPL, Hyderabad won six matches on the trot against Punjab. However, in the last five meetings between the two teams, Kings XI Punjab has managed to get two wins under their belt.
Pitch & Weather Conditions
This will be the tenth game at this venue in IPL 2020. So far in the first nine games, only one team has won chasing (CSK by 10 wickets against KXIP). David Warner has opted to bat first after winning the toss. Expect nothing different from him if he calls the coin right.
Defending scores is what has Punjab’s problem been in the tournament. Given an option, they would like to chase as well. The dew factor in the games here is slowly but surely getting out of the context as the tournament is progressing.
Sunrisers Hyderabad will miss Bhuvi for the remainder of the season with him ruled out due to hip injury. It will be interesting to see if Yarra gets his chance straightaway. Rashid Khan’s role thus gets more emphasized for captain Warner. Khaleel, Natarajan will keep their places.
For Punjab, death bowling has been a concern. Thy would like Jordan to deliver against SRH. KL Rahul hinted at several changes after their loss against CSK. He also hinted at a possible Chris Gayle return.
David Warner (C), Jonny Bairstow, Kane Williamson, Manish Pandey, Shreevats Goswami, Virat Singh, Priyam Garg, Wriddhiman Saha, Abdul Samad, Vijay Shankar, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Jason Holder, Abhishek Sharma, B Sandeep, Sanjay Yadav, Fabian Allen, Prithvi Raj Yarra, Khaleel Ahmed, Sandeep Sharma, Shahbaz Nadeem, Siddharth Kaul, Billy Stanlake, T Natarajan, Basil Thampi
Kings XI Punjab
KL Rahul (C), Mayank Agarwal, Sheldon Cottrell, Chris Gayle, Glenn Maxwell, Mohammed Shami, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Karun Nair, James Neesham, Nicholas Pooran (wk), Ishan Porel, Arshdeep Singh, Murugan Ashwin, Krishnappa Gowtham, Harpreet Brar, Deepak Hooda, Chris Jordan, Sarfaraz Khan, Mandeep Singh, Darshan Nalkande, Ravi Bishnoi, Simran Singh, Jagadeesha Suchith, Tajinder Singh, Hardus Viljoen