With two wins from three games, Kings XI Punjab look like they have hit their straps with this revamped side. Even in the one game that they lost against Royal Challenges Bangalore, the side showed its mettle and fighting spirit. Now, with the final match at Mohali’s IS Bindra Stadium coming up against Sunrisers Hyderabad, KXIP will be looking for a third win in as many games at the venue .
Kings XI Punjab 2-8 Sunrisers Hyderabad
Batting de Baadshah
Lokesh Rahul for KXIP
Shikhar Dhawan for SRH
Opening the batting for KXIP, Lokesh Rahul looks to be in prime touch with the classical strokes he has been playing. The rate at which he is scoring runs, taking the pressure off his partner, sets the platform for KXIP in the latter stages of the game.
Carrying on with his good form from international cricket, Shikhar Dhawan has been an important player at the top of the order for SRH. He has stepped up and shouldered more responsibility when the team needed him, especially in the absence of David Warner.
Bowling de Kings
Ravichandran Ashwin for KXIP
Shakib Al Hasan for SRH
With the variety he has added to his bowling repertoire, Ravichandran Ashwin is more lethal than ever. Bowling some potent wrist spin when he faces right-handed batsmen, the leg-breaks and sliders have worked like a charm for the KXIP captain.
Shakib Al Hasan is tied with Siddharth Kaul at 5 wickets for SRH but has a better economy rate. The wily all-rounder from Bangladesh has been nothing short of impressive with his consistent slow left-arm spin bowling.
Mudde ki baat
Kings XI Punjab have not enjoyed the best of times against Sunrisers Hyderabad, with 2 losses from 10 games, but they will be looking to make amends in Mohali’s final game of the season. With a chance to make it 3 out of 3 at the venue this year, there is an added incentive to go all-out against table toppers SRH.
Kings XI Punjab have looked good with the bat from the outset in all games, arguably having the best Powerplays in the season so far. With Chris Gayle making his debut and firing on all cylinders, there is even more firepower up top. But when it comes to the middle order, the quick wickets need to stop falling to preserve the momentum throughout the innings. With the ball, Ashwin has led the side brilliantly, wringing in the changes constantly. The spinners have been the talk of the town, but the pacers also raised their hands in the last game.
With a well-rounded bowling attack, Sunrisers Hyderabad have all sorts of variety to go at the opposition batsmen and make them struggle. Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Siddharth Kaul and Shakib Al Hasan have been tidy to say the least. While their top order consisting of players like Shikhar Dhawan and Kane Williamson has worked, the middle order is yet to contribute heavily.
- Of the players currently playing in both squads, Shikhar Dhawan has the most runs in this tie (248 runs)
- With 17 wickets and a best of 5/19, Bhuvneshwar Kumar is the bowler with the best stats in this tie
- David Miller has an average of 34.80, strike rate of 139.20 and best score of 89* against SRH
- With 10 catches and 2 run outs, David Miller has inflicted the most dismissals in this tie (12 dismissals)
Who could play?
KL Rahul (wk), Chris Gayle, Mayank Agarwal, Karun Nair, David Miller, Yuvraj Singh, Axar Patel, Ravichandran Ashwin (c), Andrew Tye, Mohit Sharma, Mujeeb Ur Rahman
With Chris Gayle coming into the side and finding his touch straightaway, it has caused a happy headache for the captain and team management. Expect Gayle to remain a part of the side. In the middle order, there are options galore, and it would be interesting to see who among Miller, Aaron Finch and Marcus Stoinis get the nod. Axar Patel should come back into the side if he is fit, otherwise Barinder Sran could retain his place from the previous match.
NOTE: The aforementioned line-up is an educated guess at best, and the final decision rests with the captain and the team management depending on various external factors.