HYD vs BLR MPL Team: IPL is well and truly back as the North Indian Derby between KXIP and DC last night gone down to the Super-Over. Now it’s almost time for the South Indian Derby with the star-studded Royal Challengers Bangalore side taking on the Orange Army Sunrisers Hyderabad. Both teams have a lot of similarities between them with heavy reliance over the top-order, a gun leg-spinner, death overs struggle and two champion batsmen as their respective captains – V Kohli and D Warner.
Sunrisers Hyderabad reinstated D Warner as their captain this season and he will take over the duty from K Williamson who did a decent job in his absence. SRH added some valuable buys in the 2020 Auction with the likes of A Samad, V Singh, P Garg, F Allen, M Marsh, S Yadav and B Sandeep. 2019 saw the destructive pairing of Warner and Bairstow at the top for SRH with both of them complementing each other perfectly. SRH’s downfall came when both left for national duties and they somehow managed to sneak into the playoffs before getting eliminated by DC. The known issues of a paper-thin middle-order and the Indian fast bowlers who rely on change of pace will continue this season. The conditions in UAE will to a certain extent mask the weaknesses of the pace bowling attack but the batting once again relies mostly on the top-order.
Royal Challengers Bangalore roped in the Kiwi coach M Hesson and the ex Aussie player S Katich to their setup ahead of the auction. They did a great job at the auction by roping in A Finch and C Morris to plug the holes at the top and the death. There were some valuable additions in I Udana, D Steyn, S Ahmad, J Phillipe, P Deshpande and the last-minute signing A Zampa. Their 2019 season is best left unsaid as they had a torrid start to the tournament with 6 straight losses to end up with the wooden spoon. The current setup offers a lot of promise in terms of both approach and arsenal. The question of whether they can lift the trophy after all these years will be dictated by the tactical decisions that V Kohli makes. They have a well-balanced squad as Virat says and anything less than a playoff spot will be a failure from his part.
Fixture: Sunrisers Hyderabad vs Royal Challengers Bangalore, Match 3, IPL 2020
Date & Time: Monday, 21st September 2020 at 7:30 pm (IST)
Venue: Dubai International Cricket Stadium, Dubai
Venue Stats: The average score at this venue in all T20s is 167 with big square boundaries. Teams have won 26 times each while both batting and chasing first.
Pitch Report: In yesterday’s match at Dubai, there was some grass left on the surface to keep the tracks alive for the longish tournament which helped the fast bowlers extract seam movement off the deck. The last match didn’t have the presence of dew much but expect it today with rising humidity levels.
Team news: With IPL teams upping their social media games, there was quite a bit of information for viewers to extract like AB De Villiers taking on the gloves for RCB. D Padikkal who had a stellar SMAT will partner Finch at the top and RCB is expected to go with the pace trio of Morris, Saini and Umesh Yadav.
Warner and Bairstow at the top would be a no-brainer for SRH considering their impact last season. But the tricky part is whether they would play K Williamson or M Nabi. Warner taking over the captaincy suggests the latter and their 3rd Indian pace option is unpredictable too.
Expected Changes: Padikkal at the top and AB De Villiers to don the gloves.
An IPL debut for either one or both of A Samad and Virat Singh for SRH.
Underperformers/Risky picks: W Sundar is a risky pick if RCB looks to add a left-arm spinner in S Ahmad/P Negi especially to counter the RHB dominant SRH side but Kohli’s recent liking towards Sundar might tilt the selection in his favour.
Williamson/Nabi is a question best answered by the SRH team management. But as of now, Nabi has the upper hand. The predicted XIs for the HYD vs BLR MPL fantasy cricket tips are as follows:
HYD Playing XI (predicted):
D Warner (C)
J Bairstow (WK)
BLR Playing XI (predicted):
V Kohli (C)
AB De Villiers (WK)
David Warner – The Run Machine
D Warner has been unreal with his consistent run-making for SRH since 2014 and has been the Orange Cap holder in 2015, 2017 and 2019 seasons. The most amazing thing is how he marries the consistent run-making with a high strike-rate. Seam movement at the PowerPlay can trouble him and we can expect it a lot on this track. But if he can wade through that phase then he’s unstoppable.
The AB De Villiers Dilemma
AB Be Villiers is a batting freak capable of dominating both spin and pace in equal measures. But in 2019 his numbers against spin have seen an alarming dip compared to his career numbers. This could be a factor of him not playing international cricket since 2018 but with the conditions in UAE and two great spinners in Rashid and Nabi, ABD could be in for some trouble. But since 2018 he has scored 554 runs with an average and strike-rate of 110.8 and 187.58 respectively against the fast bowlers. If he can manage to see off Rashid and Nabi, we’re in for a batting masterclass against pace.
D Warner – As discussed in the match-ups section, he is a master in T20 cricket and RCB don’t have any favourable match-ups to target him. PowerPlay will be a crucial phase with Yadav and Saini capable of extracting some seam movement off the surface. He has always been watchful against the fast bowlers at the start and if he can survive that phase then he becomes unstoppable which makes him a prime pick for HYD vs BLR today’s match prediction
V Kohli – The highest run-score in IPL history, V Kohli is RCB’s best bet to negate any movement in the early overs and his accumulating skills will come handy in the surface at Dubai. Rashid Khan and S Sharma are some of the favourable match-ups (with the latter getting his wicket 6 times in IPL) that Warner would deploy against the RCB captain.
Rashid Khan – The Afghan leg-spinner has played 4 games at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium bagging 6 wickets at a miserly ER of 4.14. He has his numbers against the star right-hand batters of RCB – Finch, AB De Villiers and V Kohli. With the large square boundaries, he will be a threat against left-handers too.
AB De Villiers – As discussed in the match-ups section, his success will be determined by how he negates Rashid Khan and to an extent M Nabi as he can wreak havoc against the SRH pace bowlers. His wicket-keeping points will be a bonus.
U Yadav – The pitch for this match at Dubai will sport some grass and it should fall straight into the hands of U Yadav who is capable of both swinging and seaming the ball away. A repeat similar to Shami in the last game can’t be ruled out.
V Shankar – A technically good batsman with the ability to hit the long ball, V Shankar will have his work cut out if SRH’s top-order fails which looks more likely with the grass on the track.