Both Sunrisers Hyderabad and Kings XI Punjab have sustained the thrill element in this edition of the Indian Premier League.
After snatching victory from jaws of defeat in their previous fixtures,the not so highly rated sides will look to sustain momentum.
On paper,Kings XI Punjab hold a slight edge with their batting,but Hyderabad have enough firepower in their bowling armoury. Punjab,too,have a lot of variety in their ranks and will look fine tune their batting.
The teams,after starting as minnows,have carved a niche and possess a couple of good match winners in their ranks.
The leggie affair
Indias only leg-spin talent will take field when Amit Mishra and Piyush Chawla turn the ball in Hyderabad today. Both the spinners have impressed in their previous outings with the ball,and Amit Mishra,in particular,has been very exciting to watch.
After picking his third IPL hat-trick in the last game,Mishra showed that he is much more than a bowler touted to be suitable for the longer format. With the conventional leg-spinners and the surprising googly,he is not easy to score.
Piyush Chawla,on the other hand,is little erratic with the odd short delivery,but his ability to generate turn and bowl a great googly,makes him very handy in this format.
Manpreet Gonys superb all-round performance changed the complexion of the game in Punjabs last fixture. After some hefty blows with the bat,the powerful athlete gave nothing away with the ball.
He is a clean striker of the ball and bends his back with the ball too. The team,staring at defeat in the last fixture,won it largely due to his contributions.
Below par batting
Both units are well sorted with their bowling department,but need some stability with the bat. Their batsmen have not fired so far and have looked very ordinary,barring a couple of names.
It is time that they get their act right,and share the burden with their delivering bowlers. With the tournament set to enter second quarter,the teams will now expect their batsmen to step up.
Pull up your socks skip!
It is high time that both Adam Gilchrist and Kumar Sangakkara,if he plays today,lead by example. Both the left-handers have been very ordinary so far,and will have to bring their experience into play. Cameron White,who led the side in place of Sangakkara,marshalled his troops brilliantly in the last game,and a question mark remains on Sangakkaras participation in this fixture.
Gilchrist,retired from all formats and playing only the IPL,is looking very off-colour and rusty in his approach. If the same continues,even Punjab will be forced to get in a contributing foreign recruit and field an Indian wicket-keeper.