Bowler M Shami
Bowler M Shami
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Dubai

Kings XI Punjab is a formidable batting side, but unfortunately, their bowlers have not found the right rhythm and surprisingly they have even failed to defend 200-odd scores on board.

On the other hand, Sunrisers Hyderabad also on a similar track and with a seasoned pacer, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, ruled out of IPL this year, will be the batters who will make the most, as these side line up to clash in the IPL on Thursday.

KXIP is currently languishing at the bottom of the table after losing four of their five games, while SRH is only slightly better at sixth following two wins and three losses so far.

KXIP's strength has been in a formidable opening duo. Skipper KL Rahul has been in scintillating form this year, scoring two fifties and a century, while Mayank Agarwal also has a half-century and a ton to his credit. The two have done the heavy-lifting for the team.

Nicholas Pooran has also looked sharp but Glenn Maxwell is yet to fire.

But despite the solid batting performances, KXIP has been unable to win because of their disappointing bowling attack. Apart from Mohammed Shami, all the other bowlers have failed to take wickets, conceding far too many runs in death overs.

They were unable to defend 223 against Rajasthan. In their 10-wicket loss in the previous outing, KXIP bowlers were at their wit's end as Chennai Super Kings overhauled a 178-run target with 14 balls and 10 wickets to spare.

And come Thursday, Sunrisers, who are blessed with a strong top-order comprising Jonny Bairstow, David Warner, Manish Pandey, and Kane Williamson, will look to exploit a low-on-confidence KXIP's bowling unit.

Having lost their opening two games due to the middle order, Sunrisers addressed the issue by bringing in Williamson to the playing XI at the expense of an all-round option.

Skipper Warner backed youngsters Abhishek Sharma and Abdul Samad to fill in for the fifth bowler and the risk paid off as the former champions won two games on the trot.

TEAMS (FROM)

Sunrisers Hyderabad: David Warner (c), Jonny Bairstow, Kane Williamson, Manish Pandey, Shreevats Goswami, Virat Singh, Priyam Garg, Wriddhiman Saha, Abdul Samad, Vijay Shankar, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Jason Holder, Abhishek Sharma, B Sandeep, Sanjay Yadav, Fabian Allen, Prithvi Raj Yarra, Khaleel Ahmed, Sandeep Sharma, Shahbaz Nadeem, Siddharth Kaul, Billy Stanlake, T Natarajan, Basil Thampi.

Kings XI Punjab: KL Rahul (c), Mayank Agarwal, Sheldon Cottrell, Chris Gayle, Glenn Maxwell, Mohammed Shami, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Karun Nair, James Neesham, Nicholas Pooran (wk), Ishan Porel, Arshdeep Singh, Murugan Ashwin, Krishnappa Gowtham, Harpreet Brar, Deepak Hooda, Chris Jordan, Sarfaraz Khan, Mandeep Singh, Darshan Nalkande, Ravi Bishnoi, Simran Singh (wk), Jagadeesha Suchith, Tajinder Singh, Hardus Viljoen.

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