A daredevil opening duo of David Warner and Jonny Bairstow is enough to intimidate any opponent and add to it the magic of Rashid Khan and Bhuvi and the finesse of Kane Williamson and you are staring at a strong T20 team.
And SRH did start IPL 2019 in that fashion and mauled their opponents. But soon teams have found a way to tackle their opening duo and have capitalised on their weak middle-order. The result? SRH have earned three straight defeats.
On the other hand, Dhoni’s ‘Daddy’s army’ is once again dominating IPL with their experience. Mind you they are playing without Dwayne Bravo their key player while Suresh Raina their talisman in batting has just one good innings under his belt.
Despite this, CSK has remained at the top and are at the brink of becoming the first team to qualify for play-offs. Can Hyderabad topple CSK?
The Hyderabad pitch has kept spinners interested throughout this season while the batsmen have had good days whenever they have spent time in the middle.
While Warner and Bairstow are going strong, there is nothing to feel good about the batting apart from them. Rashid is in fine form and Bhuvi has regained his touch. But their other bowlers haven’t made any impact.
On the other hand its going good for CSK in Indian Premier League season 12. Watson is giving brisk starts, Faf has scored runs, Raina is fresh of a fifty while Rayudu has settled down at number four. Add to it Dhoni’s strong show in the middle order and CSK have everything covered.
Deepak Chahar is leading the pace department while Tahir is owning batsmen with his leg-spin. In short, Chennai are on a roll.
With 13 wickets in eight games, Imran Tahir has emerged as a true match-winner for CSK.
The leggie has an economy of 5.76 and he can be a big threat on the Hyderabad wicket. Importantly he can rip apart SRH’s middle-order if given a sniff.
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Talking about leg-spinners, Rashid Khan has maintained a fantastic economy rate of 5.78. But he has claimed just six wickets in seven matches. His strike rate of 28 and average of 27 are the highest in any IPL season he has played so far.
Which means that teams have preferred to play him out. But can Rashid break the shackles against CSK?