Kane Williamson led Sunrisers Hyderabad’s pre-season preparation was off to the worst possible start. Even before the start of the season eleven of the Indian Premier League (IPL), they lost their talismanic skipper David Warner.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India banned Warner along with Steven Smith in the wake of the ball-tampering scandal.

It was a huge loss for the Hyderabad-based outfit. Warner had played a key role in helping the franchise do exceedingly well in the past few seasons.

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.

Well, in two of those editions, the left-hander Warner clinched the Orange Cap while in 2016, he finished second only to Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) Virat Kohli.

Not only that, his captaincy was equally impressive as he led the side to the title in 2016.

Warner led the side to the title in 2016 (Credits: BCCI)

The franchise then put the onus on Williamson – to lead the team and it turned out to be a masterstroke. The Kiwi star has exceeded all the expectations and has put the side on the verge of a playoff berth.

Sunrisers are currently on the top of the points table with six wins in eight games.

Quick Read: IPL 2018: 34th Match, Kings XI Punjab vs Rajasthan Royals – Weather Forecast

Williamson has led the side from the front. He is the leading run-scorer of his side with 322 runs in eight games including four fifties.

In a recent interview, Williamson expressed his delight over the way his team has done so far. At the same time, he also admitted that there is always a room for improvement.

“The team’s progress so far has been very impressive, even as there is always scope for improvement. One of the major tasks before the season began was to adapt to the different conditions, compared to the previous editions when 180-200 totals were very consistent. That way, full credit to the team for the way it responded to each crisis so far. However, now on these surfaces, even 140-plus is defendable,” he told Sportstar.

Sunrisers are sitting atop the points table (Credits: BCCI)

He further opened up on how he was made the captain.

“There were a few quick discussions before I was elevated as a captain, which I look at only as an added part of my role. No doubt, he (Warner) has been a huge part of Sunrisers in the last few seasons, as a leader and a player. It is a loss not to have him,” he said.

 

“Frankly, whether you are a captain or a batsman, you have a role to play like every member of the team and focus on that for the team’s cause. That is the beauty of Sunrisers campaign so far, as everyone is chipping in when needed,” he added,

 

Speaking about team’s immediate goals, Williamson said: “The first target is not aiming for the playoffs, but the next game. I strongly believe that every team, despite being in the lower half of the points-table, has a chance to come back strongly.”

Sunrisers Hyderabad will next play Delhi Daredevils on Saturday (May 5).

Also, Read: IPL 2018: Subramaniam Badrinath Lavishes Praise on In-form Mahendra Singh Dhoni