Kings XI Punjab and SunRisers Hyderabad are both coming off convincing losses to Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians respectively in their IPL 2020 campaign. However, it is Kings XI Punjab who are languishing at the bottom of the table with only one victory in their bag. Both sides will meet in Dubai, aiming to get their campaign back on track before its too late.
While Kings XI Punjab skipper KL Rahul holds the Orange cap, his gameplay has come into question in the last three games. KL Rahul’s failure to accelerate earlier has come under criticism, a factor that was the difference between KXIP reaching a total of more than 190 against Chennai Super Kings. Their new-ball bowler Mohammed Shami has not found much support as the likes of Sheldon Cottrell and Chris Jordan have not delivered the goods consistently. Hence, KXIP could replace Cottrell with Afghan spinner Mujeeb-Ur-Rahman.
SunRisers Hyderabad’s opening pair of David Warner and Jonny Bairstow have not been as prolific in the previous season, facing challenges of playing smoothly. Manish Pandey, their only experienced Indian batsman, has notched up promising starts only to throw it away without playing an impactful knock. The 2016 champions have also faced a body blow in the form of Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who will miss the rest of the tournament. Hence, the responsibility of death bowling comes down to T Natarajan.
IPL 2020: SunRisers Hyderabad vs Kings XI Punjab – Match Prediction:
There has been little to choose between the two sides, both of who have struggled to hit the straps consistently. However, SunRisers Hyderabad could manage to sideline Kings XI Punjab, mainly due to their slightly superior bowling attack. Hyderabad bowlers need to knock out KL Rahul early to have any chance of restricting Punjab to an achievable total.