The Teams: Rising Pune Supergiants v Sunrisers Hyderabad (RPS v SRH). Two teams that are at opposite ends of the table. RPS is facing some serious issues and even though they managed to put a big total on the board in their last game, RCB chased it down courtesy of Kohli’s second ton of the season. RPS captain MSD spoke about injuries hampering the team’s performance but the RPS fans will not be happy with such excuses. SRH on the other hand are looking like a well-oiled machine. Warner, Dhawan and Yuvi are amongst the runs and a bowling line up of Nehra, Bhuvi and the Fizz makes SRH a hard team to beat in the second half of the league stage.
The Venue: Dr. Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium in Visakapatnam. In the last game here, SRH decimated the Mumbai Indians, bowling them out for a paltry total of just 92. The damage was done by the strong SRH seam attack and RPS will need to be watchful against them.
Our picks for your fantasy cricket team
Usman Khwaja – Khwaja’s started his IPL journey with a typo on his jersey – the RPS management had managed to spell his name wrong! But that’s not the only thing that hasnt worked so far- although he has got starts and has looked dangerous he has not yet made a big score. With Rahane steadying the ship at the other end, expect Khwaja to come out all guns blazing. A marauding Khwaja could be just what RPS has been looking for all season.
Ashish Nehra – Nehra’s comeback has been an inspiration to many cricketers above the age of 35. He bowled beautifully in the World T20 for India and picked up the Man of the Match trophy in SRH’s last game. He looks like he is enjoying bowling alongside Bhuvi and the Fizz. Watching him, one wonders if Ajit Agarkar is also thinking of a comeback?!
Rajat Bhatia – Our wildcard pick for this game, Rajat Bhatia bowled intelligently in the last game but is yet to show his wicket-taking abilities. He is handy with the bat as well and MSD will be looking for an all round performance from him.
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(Original cover artwork by Ishita Mohanty. She tweets here.)