When Sunrisers Hyderabad take on Royal Challengers Bangalore in the first knock-out match of the season, it will be a clash between two teams with diametrically opposite form guide. (IPL 2020 Full Coverage)
David Warner’s Sunrisers won three matches in a row and four out of their last five to book their place in the play-offs in the third place. On the other hand, Virat Kohli’s team made it to the play-offs despite losing their last four matches, just inching out Kolkata Knight Riders on net run-rate.
IPL 2020 Live Score
While form is clearly with the SRH dug-out, RCB have enough firepower to come out on top. Both teams have won once against each other this season and it will be a tight contest. RCB needs its pacers to find their rhythm again.
Chris Morris and Mohammed Siraj need to pick wickets in the powerplay so that the likes of Chahal and Sundar can create pressure in the middle overs.
Chahal’s performance will be crucial as he is RCB’s only bonafide match-winner with the ball.
SRH’s bowling has been led superbly by Rashid Khan and the Afghan will be expected to pick up the crucial wickets of Kohli and AB de Villiers. The battle between Rashid and ABD could very well define the contest.
Sandeep Sharma has had an upper hand against Virat Kohli and the RCB captain would be aware of that, having been dismissed by the medium pacer for the seventh time in IPL a few days back.
Two men who have changed the fortunes of SRH are opener Wriddhiman Saha and all-rounder Jason Holder. Saha’s attacking batting at the top of the order has ensured a big talent like Bairstow is having to sit and he will be given the license to go after the RCB bowlers too.
Holder’s variety and maturity while bowling has somewhat made up for Bhuvneshwar’s absence and has lifted the likes of Natarajan and Khalil too.
Manish Pandey will hold the key in the middle order along with Williamson as SRH will look to counter the effect of Chahal.
All in all it is a battle between a team which has found its best XI and rhythm and the one which will depend heavily on its superstars to deliver a knock-out punch.