Visakhapatnam, April 21: An in-form Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) will face a struggling David Warner led-Sunrisers Hyderabad as the defending champions look for another stroll in the park here on Wednesday.
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Except for a hiccup against the Royal Challengers Bangalore, where the mighty Chris Gayle single-handedly beat KKR, their other three victories have been quite convincing to say the least.
On the other hand, the Sunrisers have struggled in almost all their matches so far, except the one against RCB where Warner and his opening partner Shikhar Dhawan hunted down a formidable score of 166. ('Yusuf will do something special')
On Monday night, the Knights sparkled in the field again as they restricted Delhi Daredevils to only 146/8 and then overhauled the target with six wickets and 11 balls to spare, courtesy knocks from skipper Gautam Gambhir (60) and Yusuf Pathan (40 not out).
In their last outing, though owing to some lusty hitting from tail-enders, the Sunrisers almost made it home against the Daredevils but Australian pacer Nathan Coulter-Nile bowled a brilliant last over to clinch the match for his side.
Though the home side has struggled, but in Twenty20 cricket, a single person on a given day can win a game. Hopes will be pinned on Warner and Dhawan to fire up front followed by a sturdy looking middle order which boasts of England all-rounder Ravi Bopara and Lokesh Rahul.
With the ball too, they have an arsenal that is raring to fire accurately, headed by South African pace spearhead Dale Steyn, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Praveen Kumar.
But against the defending champions, it will be a different ball-game altogether as the the visitors are oozing with confidence following their successive wins.
Gambhir already has three 50s to his credit and would want to continue on his form. Manish Pandey and Robin Uthappa have missd out so they will want to make this match at the ACA-VDCA Stadium here count.
The big-hitters in Yusuf Pathan and Jamaican Andre Russell also pose a huge threat to the Sunrisers bowling line-up.
KKR's spin wizard Sunil Narine is slowly returning to form after picking up two wickets in his last two outings. Umesh Yadav and South African fast bowler Morne Morkel will lead the attack again after having shared 12 wickets between them yet.
Sunrisers Hyderabad: David Warner (captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Dale Steyn, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ishant Sharma, Moises Henriques, Lokesh Rahul, Parveez Rasool, Naman Ojha (wicketkeeper), Ashish Reddy, Ricky Bhui, Chama Milind, Karn Sharma, Kane Williamson, Kevin Pietersen, Eoin Morgan, Ravi Bopara, Trent Boult, Praveen Kumar, Hanuma Vihari, Prasanth Padmanabhan, Siddarth Kaul, Bipul Sharma.
Kolkata Knight Riders: Gautam Gambhir (captain), Sunil Narine, Robin Uthappa (wicketkeeper), Piyush Chawla, Yusuf Pathan, Shakib Al Hasan, Morne Morkel, Umesh Yadav, Manish Pandey, Pat Cummins, Ryan ten Doeschate, Suryakumar Yadav, Andre Russell, Veer Pratap Singh, Kuldeep Yadav, Brad Hogg, Sumit Narwal, Sheldon Jackson, Aditya Garhwal, KC Cariappa, Vaibhav Rawal, Azhar Mahmood, Johan Botha.
Match starts 4 PM IST
Also playing tomorrow at 8 PM - RCB Vs CSK in Bengaluru (Match Preview)