Bruised and battered after suffering a hat-trick from defeat, the desperate Sunrisers Hyderabad would seek inspiration from skipper David Warner to arrest any further slides when they take on the Punjab Kings IPL match here on wednesday.
SRH could not have asked for a worse start to the season, as they fell to three consecutive defeats and in any case while chasing.
Punjab are slightly better than SRH, after recording one win from all three matches to be ranked seventh in the standings, one step ahead of opponents on Wednesday.
Until now, Chasing was Sunrisers ‘Achilles’ heel in the league. They failed to overcome a low score against the Mumbai Indians in their last match.
SRH were hit hard by the lack of depth in their XI game and the Indian bench below par.
Under these circumstances, the burden is on Warner to do a little magic and inspire his country to bounce back in the tournament.
The SRH captain is in a big inning, as he has scored only 93 of the three games he has played so far, with the 54 highest against the Royals Challengers Bangalore.
He also needs serious introspection before deciding to play XI on Wednesday.
Warner and Rashid Khan are safe in the slots of foreign players, but the lack of Kane Williamson has been badly felt as it can provide solidity to the middle order, especially after they have been shaken in three consecutive pursuits.
Dealing with the poor form of Wridhhiman Saha, Johnny Beirstov is leading the door goalkeeper position.
But what would worry Warner the most was the lack of depth in the team’s local team resources.
It’s high time they liked each other Manish Pandi,, Vijay Shankar, Abhishek Sharma and Abdul Samad lifted their socks as forged Kedar jadhav and Priam Garg are waiting in the wings for their opportunities.
SRH is also badly affected by the bad show Bhuvneshwar kumar and T Natarajan.
Natarajan was replaced by Haleil Ahmed in his last match and the last one did a good job to limit Mumbai. But Bhuvneshwar continues to be on the expensive side.
Rashid was frugal, but so far he didn’t look threatening.
Punjab are also in a series of losses after winning their tournament over the Rajasthan Royals. They lost to Chennai Super Kings and Delhi Capitals.
But the efforts of the bowlers, who were lower than them, ruined the hard work of the openers.
Both Richardson and Meredith were expensive in all the games they played without much success, and it’s time for Rahul to consider other alternatives like Chris Jordan.
The young Arshdeep Singh is impressive for the Punjab.
SRH: David Warner (K), Kane Williamson, Virat Singh, Manish Pandi, Priam Garg, Wriddhiman Saha, Johnny Beirstov, Jason Roy, Sreevats Goswami, Vijay Shankar, Mohammad Nabi, Kedar Jadhav, J Suchit, Jason Holder, Abhishek Sharma, Abdul Samad, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Rashid Khan, T Natarajan, Sandeep Sharma, Khaleel Ahmed, Siddharth Kaul, Basil Thampi, Shahbaz Nadeem and Mujeeb ur Rahman.
Punjabi kings: KL Rahul (c & wk), Mayank Agarwal, Chris Gale, Mandeep Singh, Prabsimran Singh, Nicholas Pooran (wk), Sarfaraz Khan, Deepak Hooda, Murugan Ashwin, Ravi Bishnoi, Harpreet Brar, Mohammed Shami, Arshdeep Singh, Ishan Porel, Darshan Nalkande, Chris Jordan, Dawid Malan, Jhye Richards Riley Meredith, Moses Anrikes, Jalaj Saxena, Utkarsh Singh, Fabian Allen, Saurab Kumar.
The match starts at 15:30.