Sunrisers Hyderabad v Mumbai Indians
Tuesday May 4, 15:00
TV: live on Sky Sports
Williamson not producing revival just yet
A change of captaincy and the dropping of ex-skipper David Warner from the Playing XI may have seemed like a good idea. But the end result was the same.
Jonny Bairstow got off to his usual brisk start before being guilty of his customary dismissal just as he was getting going. And new skipper Kane Williamson showed that brilliant though he is, he’s not necessarily a man for all seasons as a batsman. In this case, not the man to anchor a mammoth chase; you’re not going to get over the line chasing 220 when your number three scores 20 off 21.
Mohammad Nabi, Warner’s replacement in the team, at least batted in the spirit of things. He scored a quickfire 17 off just five which was always going to be in a losing cause but was a good example of what SRH need to do more of- batting without worrying about the loss of your wicket if the occasion requires it.
SRH’s race is run barring a miracle and they may already be thinking of next season and where they went wrong this time around.
Likely XI: Bairstow, Pandey, Williamson, Jadhav, Shankar, Nabi, Samad, Khan, Kumar, Sharma, Ahmed.
Pollard brilliance keeps Mumbai on track
Mumbai will be feeling a lot better about life now than they did with a few overs to go in their match against CSK on Saturday.
Yes, Kieron Pollard was at the crease and no team is safe when he’s still around but there can’t have been too many believers. But Pollard is arguably the greatest batsman T20 cricket has ever seen and his 87 off 34 was remarkable but it certainly wasn’t the first time we’ve seen that sort of thing before from him.
It was an important win for three reasons. It means CSK didn’t flee from the pack, it means Mumbai stay in touch with the Top 4 and it will have lifted the spirits ahead of this one.
Quinton de Kock should keep his place after two improved knocks of 70 not out and 38. Jimmy Neesham had a poor game and may have to wait for another chance.
Mumbai like it in Delhi
Delhi may be just the sort of ground that suits Mumbai for the next few matches. They much prefer it when it comes down to who can create the most carnage in the death overs in high-scoring matches. It’s perfect for the likes of Pollard, Hardik Pandya and de Kock, knowing they can swing through the line and that you’ll get great value for well-timed shots.
Over the weekend CSK posted 218 here (chased by Mumbai as we’ve seen) and the Royals got 220 (more than enough for SRH) so you can see that even the best sides can go round the park in Delhi.
The head-to-head is remarkably even at 9-8 Mumbai, but SRH look a shadow of their former selves.
Mind you, 2.546/4 on SRH is just about the biggest price I’ve seen on anyone this season so a good start from Bairstow and Pandey could allow for a decent trade should Hyderabad bat first. But I wouldn’t hang on to that SRH position too long; they can’t be trusted.
Century very much a possibility
75, 70, 87, 124. Those are the top scores across both sides among teams who have played at Delhi so far.
So, the fact there has been a century already (a 124 rather than just 100, by the way) by Jos Buttler is a good indication of just how good this wicket is.
But another clue is the strike rate at which those scores are being made. Buttler struck at 193, Pollard at a barely believable 255.
So, it doesn’t seem to be that big an ask for a player in the Top 3 from either side to face 50-odd balls and get to a century, if they’re aggressive enough, and have a little fortune.
The likes of de Kock, Rohit Sharma and Bairstow are no strangers to scoring T20 hundreds and they won’t get many better opportunities than this one to get another. It’s 15/2 someone gets to 100 in the match.
Krunal of some interest
Sharma (23/10) and de Kock (11/4) are the usual market leaders for Mumbai for top batsman and as ever, you can’t rule out either. Of the two, de Kock has been in the better form.
That man Pollard is 13/2 but the stars would have to be well-aligned for him to go back-to-back batting at five or six.
An interesting pick could be Krunal Pandya at 11/1. They’ve batted him at four already this season because they like having a left-handed batsman in the middle-order now that Ishan Kishan isn’t playing. He can hit the ball a mile and doesn’t die wondering but there’s a bit of a worry that he generally scores quick 30s and 40s rather than really kicking on; on this wicket that might not be enough.