Sunrisers one win away from the playoffs


The stakes could not be higher. A win on Thursday will put Sunrisers Hyderabad in the playoffs, and a loss will throw Delhi Daredevils out of the tournament, but wait, there’s more.

Imagine Bhuvneshwar Kumar at the top of his mark. At the top of his game. One of the best bowlers in limited-overs cricket. And at the other end, an 18-year old, with scant international experience, but bursting with so much talent that he is already being compared to Sachin Tendulkar.

We’ve been here before, of course. Prithvi Shaw scored 65 off 36 balls against Sunrisers on Saturday. Clearly, the battle between the next generation of Indian batsmen – Shreyas Iyer and Rishabh Pant included – and some of T20 cricket’s finest bowlers – Rashid Khan and Shakib Al Hasan – is just so nice, you gotta see it twice, along with the bells and whistles of promotion and relegation.

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Among Daredevils’ overseas batsmen, Jason Roy has scored 97 from three innings (including a 91*), Glenn Maxwell 133 from nine innings and Colin Munro 63 from five. Maxwell, however, has picked wickets in three of his last four games, and even bowled a Powerplay over for just four runs against Sunrisers. Given the drought of runs, Daredevils have started using two overseas slots for bowlers – Liam Plunkett and Trent Boult – apart from Dan Christian and could do the same on Thursday by picking only one of the above three batsmen. But who?

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