Sunrisers Hyderabad vs Rising Pune Supergiant, XI Players, May 6,04:00 PM


Sunrisers Hyderabad Probable XI:

David Warner (c), Shikhar Dhawan, Kane Williamson, Yuvraj Singh, Moises Henriques, Naman Ojha (wk), Bipul Sharma, Rashid Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ashish Nehra, Siddarth Kaul

Rising Pune Supergiant Probable XI:
Rahul Tripathi, Ajinkya Rahane, Steve Smith, Manoj Tiwary, Ben Stokes, MS Dhoni, Daniel Christian, Washington Sundar, Imran Tahir, Jaydev Unadkat, Shardul Thakur

Team News:

Sunrisers Hyderabad

It took some time and a gradual progression from stretching exercises away from all the action followed by gentle bowling with a short run-up, but Ashish Nehra eventually delivered with full tilt in practiceon Friday. Tom Moody conveyed that the senior bowler has had two-three bowling sessions recently and is fully fit, which means he will come in for either of Mohammad Siraj or Siddharth Kaul.

Moody typically kept his cards close to his chest with respect to the balance of the side, but there is likely to be a bit of a reshuffle in the line-up owing to a) The expectation that the wicket will play out slower and two-paced and will not be as true as has been the case in most games so far b) The fact that SRH's last defeat was due to lack of a solid fifth bowling option. If the surface does play out like expected, Bipul Sharma could be a shoo in.

Moody opined that the team has reserved the left-arm spinner only for certain surfaces and against teams that didn't have too many left-handers, which only means that he could come in. With Kane Williamson strengthening the batting at the top and Moises Henriques too being among the runs, SRH could afford to drop Deepak Hooda for Bipul. Warner could also turn to Moises Henriques for his medium pace through the middle overs and expect the latter to put his cutters to good use.

Rising Pune Supergiant

The visitors seemed to have had an optional practice day, as most of their fringe players sweat it out, along with opener Rahul Tripathi. Yet, one or two among these could be considered the right horse for the course. On a sluggish surface, a medium pacer like Rajat Bhatia could be the exact sort of middle-overs weapon that IPL teams dream of having.

After starting off with a slightly underwhelming approach to the powerplay overs, David Warner and Shikhar Dhawan have turned it around stupendously in the last couple of games. The last home fixture against KKR saw them amass their best in the first six - 79 for no loss - and there seems to be a general attitude towards milking the period. But on a slow surface against a spinner, such plans could go woefully awry, and Smith will be aware of that. It could also turn out to be the sort of surface where a medium pacer like Daniel Christian could thrive with his variations. Like Henriques for SRH, a similar medium pacer in Daniel Christian could be of good use to RPS.

What to expect: It's only the first week of May and temperatures have already soared past the sapping threshold of 40 degrees. Saturday evening is expected to be sunny and slightly pleasant, which basically means (at best) a drop to around 36-37 degrees which is still going to be jersey-drenching hot for the players. The word from within is that a different pitch will be used for this game, and is expected to be slightly sluggish and two-paced.

History: The two teams won a game each in 2016, but RPS hold the psychological edge ahead of Saturday's fixture as they beat them at home a fortnight ago. It wasn't just the win, but the manner of the victory - Dhoni rendering SRH's, and perhaps the league's, best bowler in the death overs ineffective - that buoy RPS.

Did you know:

-MS Dhoni scored 61 off 34 balls in the match against SRH in Pune. In the other ten innings, he strikes at 94.70 with a highest of 28.
-Rahul Tripathi is 48 runs short of becoming the second player to score 400 runs in debut season after Shreyas Iyer in 2015 (excluding inaugural IPL season).
- SRH average 43.59 this season with the bat - the highest by any team in a season in IPL.

What they said:

Tom Moody: We've bowled particularly well in certain aspects of the 20 overs and there are certain parts that we need to improve on, and if not consider the balance of the side. We can't afford to have the good work of say, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Rashid Khan to sort of unravel in another department.

Rahul Tripathi: It's an important game for us. We're close to playoffs. SRH are a good side at home, so it will be good to win against them

Sunrisers Hyderabad (From):
David Warner(c), Shikhar Dhawan, Kane Williamson, Yuvraj Singh, Moises Henriques, Deepak Hooda, Naman Ojha(w), Rashid Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Siddarth Kaul, Mohammed Siraj, Ricky Bhui, Bipul Sharma, Ashish Nehra, Ben Cutting, Abhimanyu Mithun, Mustafizur Rahman, Barinder Sran, Vijay Shankar, Chris Jordan, Mohammad Nabi, Eklavya Dwivedi, Pravin Tambe, Ben Laughlin, Tanmay Agarwal

Rising Pune Supergiant (From): Ajinkya Rahane, Rahul Tripathi, Steven Smith(c), Manoj Tiwary, MS Dhoni(w), Ben Stokes, Daniel Christian, Washington Sundar, Jaydev Unadkat, Shardul Thakur, Imran Tahir, Faf du Plessis, Ashok Dinda, Ankush Bains, Rajat Bhatia, Ankit Sharma, Ishwar Pandey, Adam Zampa, Jaskaran Singh, Baba Aparajith, Deepak Chahar, Usman Khawaja, Mayank Agarwal, Rahul Chahar, Lockie Ferguson, Saurabh Kumar, Milind Tandon

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