An upbeat SunRisers Hyderabad will look to carry on their winning momentum to book a play-offs berth when they take on an equally keen Royal Challengers Bangalore in a crucial IPL cricket match at Uppal, on Friday.
The David Warner-led side is on a roll at the business end of the tournament after winning three straight games to be in contention of reaching the final-four. RCB though have run hot and cold after their loss against bottom-placed Kings XI Punjab in a rain-curtailed game yesterday but the Virat Kohli-led side is also in the play-offs race with 6 wins from 12 games.
SRH, with 7 wins and 5 losses, found their rhythm last week against Rajasthan Royals, who are also in the final-four race, when their top-order combined well to help them post 201.
Accused of heavily relying on orange cap holder Warner – leads the run-getter’s chart with 504 runs in 12 games, SRH saw Shikhar Dhawan, Moises Henriques and Eoin Morgan score significant runs in the team’s 7-run win against RR.
Australian all-rounder Henriques has not only contributed with the bat (a match-winning 74 not out against Delhi Daredvils) but also played his part with the ball (3-16 against Kings XI Punjab) in times of need.
The bowling, led by Trent Boult, has also looked potent with Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Praveen Kumar also proving the adequate support. Finding their bearings just in the nick of time, SRH are looking like the dark horses of the tournament.
But RCB can never be counted out in the race as the threat of Chris Gayle always looms large against any opposition when the Vijay Mallya-owned side takes field. Gayle apart, the team also boats of Kohli, AB de Villers and their strike force in Mitchell Starc have all made quite an impact.
De Villiers’ 133 not out is till fresh in everyone’s mind after the South African bludgeoned Mumbai Indians bowlers at Wankhede earlier this week to help his side post 235 for one in 20 overs.
In the head-to-head record, SRH enjoy a 3-2 advantage against RCB with the Tom Moody-coached side getting the better of the Bangalore-based outfit in their first clash of this season on April 13.