Doubleheader preview: RR and SRH seek revival, DC and PBKS target consolidation

Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad completely thwarted their match on Sunday to find some form and stability in the second phase of the Indian Premier League.

The Royals have won two of the six matches they have played so far, while the Sunrisers have won one of the six games. Not surprisingly, while RR was seventh, SRH occupied the bottom slot in the IPL table.

There is no stability in the RR led by Sanju Samson. They had their first win in their second game and lost their next two matches before winning again – against the struggling Kolkata Knight Riders.

In their last match against Mumbai Indians, the top-order scored 171 for 4 wickets. .

Especially in the absence of key foreign players like Joffre Archer and Ben Stokes, RR has a lot of problems to solve.

Their batting relied heavily on Samson but the inconsistent captain did not fire from 119 in the opening match, after which 42 was the highest. Opener Jose Butler has not yet scored a half-century in six matches.

Middle-order struggled with David Miller scoring just one half-century in five games, while Ryan Parag was not in form with a maximum of 25.

Although it was unfortunate to lose in the Super Over against Delhi Capitals, SRH are coming into the match on Sunday after losing their last two matches.

They also rely heavily on captains David Warner, Johnny Bairstow, Manish Pandey and Kane Williamson in the top-four, but rarely have they fired together and are concerned they are not batting big in the middle order.

Warner has two half-centuries, but he has not yet scored a big century. For the same Bairstow, however, Williamson played the most with 66 not out in just three games.

Kiwi batsman and Pandey, who have two half-centuries in four matches, hold the key for SRH if their openers fail to give a good start.

The poor quality of Indian talent is also a curse for sunrisers.

In the bowling department, the Afghan spinner relies heavily on Rashid Khan and he is doing well with nine wickets from six matches, though not superbly. But the problem is that he is not getting enough support from his bowling colleagues.

Teams (from):

Rajasthan Royals: Sanju Samson (c & wk), Jose Butler (wk), Yashaswi Jaiswal, Manan Vohra, Anuj Rawat, Ryan Parag, David Miller, Rahul Tewatia, Mahipal Lomrer, Shreyas Gopal, Mayank Markande, Jayadev Unadkat, Karthik Shivam Dubey, Chris Morris, Mustafizur Rehman, Chetan Zakaria, KC Kariyappa, Kuldeep Yadav, Akash Singh.

Sunrisers Hyderabad: David Warner (c), Kane Williamson, Johnny Bairstow (wk), Manish Pandey, Srivat Goswami (wk), Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Priyam Garg, Vijay Shankar, Abhishek Sharma, Abdul Samad, Virat Singh, Jason Holder , Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Shahbaz Nadeem, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Sandeep Sharma, Khalil Ahmed, Siddharth Kaul, Basil Thampi, Jagadeesh Suchit, Kedar Jadhav, Mujeeb-ur-Rahman.

The match starts at 3:30 p.m.

DC Consolidation aims, PBKS wants the spin trick to work again

Young Punjab Kings spinners Harpreet Brar and Ravi Bishnoi will not miss another dream day against Delhi Capitals as they aim to make a huge leap in their bid for the Indian Premier League play-off berth on Sunday.

Brar’s match-winning 3/19 was wonderfully filled Bishnoi 2/19 Their 5/36 score in 8 overs destroyed a star-studded Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Come Sunday, openers Shikhar Dhawan and Prithviraj Shah will both face tough work against the Delhi team, which has a slightly better record against spin attacks.

Dhawan (311) and Shaw (269) provided a flying start with five fours and 71 fours and 15 sixes between them.

For any bowling unit, facing the Dhawan-Shah duo is a daunting proposition.

Steve Smith and Rishabh Pant are also excellent players in tackling slow bowlers.

In fact, Bishnoi, who bowls primarily at Google, prefers to challenge a DC skipper who has the knack of spin against the deep mid-wicket area.

Narendra Modi Stadium catches track balls and batting becomes more difficult as the game progresses.

So it should come as no surprise that in-form KL Rahul wants to bat first again and was unbeaten on 91 off 57 balls against RCB the other day.

Akshar Patel’s all-round existence gives him much needed stability because he can prove some of the slower tracks.
It’s a battle of the top orders where Prithviraj Shah can face Rahul’s intelligence with zeal, while Chir Gayle tries to overtake Pant Pyrotechnics with his own batsmanship style.

However, one area ahead of DC is the pace bowling department, which includes the trio of Avesh Khan, Kagiso Rabada and Ishant Sharma.

While Avesh has had a stand-out season with 13 scalps with an economy rate of less than 7.5 so far, Rabada has got some kind of rhythm in the last two games, which he did not have during the previous few games.

Even in Punjab, there is a problem in retaining captain Rahul, who has scored 331 runs so far.

In the bowling department, Mohammad Shami has taken just eight wickets in seven games, while premium purchases like Richie Richardson and Riley Meredith are very expensive.

Chris Jordan has done well in some games, which has made Rahul’s task of finding the perfect pace combination infinitely harder.

Punjab Kings pace attack long bowled cannon fodder for batsmen going for jugular during the innings back end.

Teams (from)

Punjab Kings: KL Rahul (c & wk), Mayank Agarwal, Chris Gayle, Mandeep Singh, Prabhasimran Singh, Nicholas Pooran (wk), Sarfaraz Khan, Deepak Hooda, Murugan Ashwin, Ravi Bishnoi, Harpreet Brar, Mohammad Shami, Arshid, Ishan Porel, Darshan Nalkande, Chris Jordan, David Malan, Jay Richardson, Shahrukh Khan, Riley Meredith, Moises Henriques, Jalaj Saxena, Utkarsh Singh, Fabian Allen, Saurabh Kumar.

Delhi capitals: Shikhar Dhawan, Prithviraj Shah, Ajinkya Rahane, Rishabh Pant, Shimran Hetmir, Marcus Stoinis, Chris Vokes, R Ashwin, Shams Mulani, Amit Mishra, Lalit Yadav, Pravin Dubey, Kagiso Rabada, Anrish Khan, , Steve Smith, Umesh Yadav, Ripal Patel, Vishnu Vinod, Lukman Meriwala, M Siddharth, Tom Curran, Sam Billings, Aniruddha Joshi.

The match starts at 7:30 p.m.

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