After the thrashing they received from Chennai Super Kings the other night, the Sunrisers Hyderabad bowlers need not look elsewhere for inspiration. If a bowler of the class of Dale Steyn cannot inspire them, no one can.
The SRH bowlers, on whom the team has relied so much in this edition, have a lot of introspection to do ahead of their crucial engagement against Kings XI Punjab at the PCA Stadium here on Saturday.
Steyn has served SRH with distinction. Barring one or two occasions, he has been a highly economical bowler in a format where every dot ball is considered a piece of gold.
The ignominious defeat to CSK has dented SRH’s confidence and impeccable home record. But, Steyn’s bowling partners — Ishant Sharma, Thisara Perera, Darren Sammy and spinners Amit Mishra and Karan Sharma — would do well to learn from the South African.
In batting, SRH is a little too dependent on its top order: Kumar Sangakkara, Shikhar Dhawan and Parthiv Patel.
KXIP will also be down after losing to Rajasthan Royals. The hosts looked like strangers at home and their batsmen, barring Adam Gilchrist and Shaun Marsh, failed to adjust to the slow pitch. Perhaps, the team erred strategically by not sending its game-changer David Miller up the order.
While bowlers like Praveen Kumar and Piyush Chawla returned decent figures, Manpreet Grewal and Parvinder Awana struggled to get to terms with the pitch. Of course, there was always a question mark over the choice of bowlers on such a surface. KXIP has to take care of a few loose ends in its last match at its primary home.
SRH and KXIP, placed fifth and sixth with 14 and 10 points respectively, have already entered the do-or-die phase. The Saturday night contest will reflect the desperation in the two camps.