Brendon McCullum © IANS
Brendon McCullum has been in fine form Chennai Super Kings © IANS


Sharjah: Apr 26, 2014


Having opened their account in the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL), Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) will bank on their new-found confidence when they face the acid test of taking on a formidable Chennai Super Kings (CSK).


Sunrisers Hyderabad started their IPL campaign on a disappointing note, losing to Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab in their first two games, but managed to bounce back against Delhi Daredevils by notching up a narrow four-run win in Dubai last night. Hyderabad rode on the knocks of Aaron Finch (88) and David Warner (58), both of whom stitched a 128-run stand for the unconquered second wicket, and then restricted Delhi to 180 for four to record their first win of the season.


Finch and Warner will be expected to repeat their exploits against a team, that has been one of the most consistent sides in the cash-rich event. Skipper and opener Shikhar Dhawan is yet to click in the tournament and he would certainly be keen to demonstrate his batting prowess. The middle-order, with the likes of Lokesh Rahul and Y Venugopal Rao, has failed so far and the youngsters must be itching to make a mark.


Their bowlers had not done a bad job till now. They had faired well against Rajasthan but could not withstand the Glenn Maxwell tide against Punjab. However, last night they managed to eke out a thrilling win with bowling spearhead Dale Steyn taking two for 33. Besides the South African, Bhuvneshwar Kumar has also been pretty consistent. The team will also depend on leg-spinners Amit Mishra and Karn Sharma to fire in unison.


Two-time champions Chennai Super Kings started their IPL campaign with a loss at the hands of Kings XI Punjab, but they lived up to their reputation by storming back with back-to-back victories over Delhi Daredevils, Rajasthan Royals and defending champions Mumbai Indians.


Going by their form, CSK will definitely start as overwhelming favourites. They defeated Mumbai Indians comprehensively with the in-from Brendon McCullum hitting a belligerent unbeaten 71 and tomorrow also CSK will rely on yet another flying start by the New Zealander along with his opening partner Dwayne Smith. Suresh Raina will again be the man to watch out for. The left-handed batsman has been one of the most prolific scorers in the IPL, barring yesterday’s match. Faf du Plessis and skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni have always been dangerous customers, while Ravindra Jadeja is a dependable bat as well.


CSK’s bowling has also been pretty good. While left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja has been consistent. last night, Mohit Sharma (4 for 14) produced a fine death bowling display to help the team restrict the title holders to a modest 141 for seven. But mostly it has been a collective effort from the bowlers, especially the pace trio of Ben Hilfenhaus, Ishwar Pandey and Mohit, who were accurate with their swing bowling.


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