There were apprehensions all around that Sunrisers Hyderabad would have a tough outing in the ongoing Indian Premier League. Even before the start of the tournament, they lost their talismanic skipper David Warner in the wake of the ball-tampering scandal.
Warner was the batting mainstay of the side in the last four season. His runs in the last four editions are – 641, 848, 562, 528.
In two of those editions, the left-hander Warner clinched the Orange Cap while in 2016, he finished second only to Virat Kohli. Not only that, his captaincy was equally impressive as he led the side to the title in 2016. Last year, the team made it to the playoffs.
In his absence, Kane Williamson was given the responsibility of leading the side. And it is safe to say that the Kane Williamson-led side proved the doubters wrong. The Sunrisers are set to finish their season in a dream style. The one-time IPL champion became the first team to make it to the playoffs this season.
And one of the biggest reasons behind it is the brilliant performance of their bowlers. The bowlers have helped the franchise defend low totals with ease, thus firing the team to the top of the points table.
Sunrisers head coach Tom Moody, on Wednesday, said the difference was that his bowlers adapted better to the conditions than others.
“If you look at the comparisons, our bowlers have adapted better than others. They have exploited the conditions, defended low targets of 140-150 runs, even on grounds with small boundaries,” he said.
“Our bowlers have shown consistency. We built a strong bowling line-up which has depth. It is critical when our bowlers are put under pressure. Obviously one or two bowlers will be casualties in this format, we have experienced it. Rashid Khan was under pressure at the start of the tournament but look how he bounced back,” he added.
Unlike their bowling, their batting has not been very consistent. The batsmen have failed to deliver apart from skipper Kane Williamson and lately Shikhar Dhawan. However, Moody defended his batsmen saying they have a “very powerful batting line-up too”.
“Shikhar has done incredibly well for India in the past 12 months or so and Kane is a world-class player. We also have Deepak Hooda, who is an exciting young player while Yusuf Pathan and Manish Pandey add depth to batting. We are not only focussed on our bowling but batting too,” said the former Australia player.
“The middle-order hasn’t got the opportunities. The conditions have been challenging, given that the batsmen coming in at No.4 or 5 have to smash the ball out of the ground immediately. The time they’ve got at the crease has also been less. But we’re winning no?,” he added.
Sunrisers will next take on Royal Challengers Bangalore on Thursday at the Chinnaswamy Stadium.