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It is a painful five run loss that the Delhi Daredevils are coming off as they face an upbeat Mumbai Indians at the Wankhede stadium on Tuesday. It was a much better performance by the Daredevils as compared to their tournament opener against the Kolkata Knight Riders. Their ace speedster Umesh Yadav picked up four wickets against the Rajasthan Royals and one of their key batsmen in the lineup David Warner; showed some form scoring a 56 ball 77 in the Daredevils’ run chase.
Both their matches in the tournament have been contrasting. In the first game, their batting gave way, whereas in the second, their bowlers leaked far too many runs. Come Tuesday, against the Mumbai Indians, the Daredevils would want to put up a good collective effort on the field.
“We have discussed after the two losses as to where we went wrong and what needs to be done, we are just trying to get better and to be honest we haven’t played to our potential. Once we start playing to our potential, I think we are going to beat many sides in the tournament,” said Daredevils all-rounder Irfan Pathan, who addressed the press here in Mumbai.
A lot of big names are missing from the DD lineup and one of the biggest names missing out in the two matches played so far has been Virender Sehwag who has been nursing his back. It is still unsure if Sehwag will be a part of the high octane game on Tuesday as Irfan Pathan said, “Sehwag is here. He will be practicing today and a decision on his availability will be taken only tomorrow.” Pathan was also unsure of Morne Morkel’s participation in the fixture tomorrow as he was expected to join the squad soon.
The team has suffered two back to back losses in the tournament, definitely not a good way to start, especially after they were on a roll last year. The DD pacer was confident that things will turn around soon. “We would have liked to have two wins instead of two losses, but we are professional cricketers and we all know that it’s a long tournament and once you get the winning momentum, things will turn around. We are very positive and hopeful of a good show against the Mumbai Indians. We will try and play like Daredevils, like we did last year.”
On a personal front too, Irfan has been silent. He is coming off an injury and hasn’t had the best of starts to the tournament. Irfan believes, he will only get better by playing more and more matches. “It is just a matter of bowling a lot more, I played the first match and bowled just two overs and in the second match, bowled four overs and the rhythm was better. I am only going to get better with time, especially after coming back after an injury; you need to keep bowling a lot more especially in the matches and not in the nets. I am feeling a lot better after the second game.”
And what will it be to face off against the likes of a star studded MI line-up? “There is a lot of attention on the star-power in the Mumbai Indians line up. This might just prove to be an edge for us, as when you play as big stars, they will be under a lot of pressure.”
After Sunday’s thrilling tie – which was decided by means of the Super Over – the Sunrisers Hyderabad and Royal Challengers Bangalore will be locking horns once again.
After the two teams couldn’t be separated in 40 overs of the regular contest, it took two massive sixes from Cameron White and a testing over from Dale Steyn to guide SRH to their second win of the season. The Hyderabad franchise will be all charged up from that nail-biting win and will be looking forward to make it two in two against RCB this season.
RCB though are a very formidable opponent while playing at home. Their energy almost multiplies several times over when in the charged atmosphere created by their home fans. They fought valiantly through their bowlers and fielders in their defense of a low total in the previous match and will be keen to get even with the Sunrisers.
Tuesday, April 9, 2013, 4 p.m
M Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru
Dale Steyn won round one of his much-looked forward to battle against Chris Gayle after denying the six that would have taken RCB to victory in the Super Over. The Jamaican, who averages an incredible 57.54 and scores his runs at a mind boggling strike-rate of 174.38 in matches at Bengaluru, will be keen to settle scores.
Virat Kohli and Moises Henriques played crucial parts in resurrecting RCB’s innings in the previous match. But the arrival of AB de Villiers, which will be a huge boost to the team’s middle order, means the team will have to change their combination to fit in the South African. On the bowling front too, RCB have been boosted by the confirmation that Zaheer Khan is fit and available for selection.
It took a gem of an innings from the young Hanuma Vihari to steer the team to safety in the home fixture against RCB. The team will expect the established international players – Cameron White and Kumar Sangakkara – to hold their own and allow the younger players to express themselves. On the bowling front, keep an eye on Dale Steyn and Amit Mishra, both of who have been very difficult to get away.
As Deccan Chargers, the Hyderabad franchise had won 6 off their 11 matches against RCB. Following Sunrisers Hyderabad’s win in Sunday night’s thrilling Super Over, the balance has tilted further towards the Hyderabad franchise in their contests against the Royal Challengers Bangalore; the head-to-head now stands at 7-5 in favour of the Hyderabad franchise.
In 13 IPL matches at Bengaluru, Chris Gayle has hit a total of 48 sixes.
Royal Challengers Bangalore will play their third home fixture of the season when they square off against the defending champions Kolkata Knight Riders on April 11. Sunrisers Hyderabad meanwhile head out to the National capital to take on the Delhi Daredevils on April 12.