Sunrisers Hyderabad may have lost a thriller at the Eden Gardens against Kolkata Knight Riders, but they still are a force to be reckoned with in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2019 season. The Orange Army reached the final in the IPL 2018 edition. What stood out for the 2016 winners was their consistency in terms of getting results. The unit grew in confidence and skipper Kane Williamson led the side well. SRH have become a consistent force in the IPL in the last few years.
Their strong side promises something big once again this season. SRH will be looking to add to their tally of one title, which they won under David Warner in 2016. The Aussie superstar is back after a 12-month ban and he led the way with a stroke-filled 85 in the opening match for SRH. But that was overshadowed by Andre Russell’s blitz in the end for KKR. Till the 17th over, SRH were in the match and looked like winning the tie.
Williamson will be leading the side from the second match onwards, and he will benefit from the seniors in the team. Warner, Shakib Al Hasan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jonny Bairstow will be part of that leadership think-tank to ease the duty of Williamson.
SRH have a settled side in their ranks and they will rely upon their bowling in particular to hurt opposition teams. There are plenty of match-winners out there. The idea for SRH will be to recreate the situation they were in last term and bring it in IPL 2019. The experience might help them go long and strong.
Here are the reasons why SRH can go on to clinch the IPL 2019 trophy.
Foreign batsmen bring quality in the top order
SRH’s four foreign batting stars bring immense quality in the ranks. Warner has won two Orange Caps in the past after being the top run-scorer in the IPL while playing for SRH. He was on top gear for three successive seasons between 2015-17. Last season the classical Williamson came in and won the prestigious award. He was a visual treat.
These two will be key for SRH when they step on to the field. Williamson is most likely to feature from the 2nd match onwards for the Orange army, as he has been battling a minor injury. Add Jonny Bairstow to the side and you have another solid T20 player. He has been a revelation for England and offers that slice of versatility. He scored 39 in the first match against KKR.
The aggressive Martin Guptill is there as well and could be a strong force in the final phase of SRH’s campaign. Once Bairstow and Warner depart for World Cup preparation duties, Guptill will need to bring that calmness and authority.
The pace bowling unit is world class
There is no doubt that the Orange Army boast of the best bowling line- up. And the pacers in particular are lethal and provide that steel required to win you games. Bhuvneshwar Kumar is the leader of the pack and he offers assistance with swing at the top and the accuracy at the death. His presence makes the side strong. He will be supported by last season’s hero Siddarth Kaul. The right-arm fast bowler will be required to maintain the consistency he showed in IPL 11.
What makes SRH a deadly fast-bowling unit is that variety of Indian bowlers. Sandeep Sharma is a seasoned T20 veteran. He can easily come in and produce substance. Basil Thampi showed his strengths in the matches he played last term, He adds depth from the bench. Khaleel Ahmed will bring that extra bit with his left-arm option. He has gained experience with the Indian side.
The side can easily rotate the bowlers and offer that rest to key assets when required. In addition to the Indian bowlers, Billy Stanlake is very much efficient and strong. A stable team with quality on offer makes the side build on the confidence.
Quality in spin can help SRH defend totals
SRH have quality in the ranks as far spin bowling is concerned. And what they did well was to add Shabad Nadeem as the third main spinner of the side. He has been a quality bowler over the years for Delhi. And then we have the best spinner in the world – Rashid Khan. Khan has been proven to unpredictable over the last two seasons and he guarantees you wickets in abundance.
Last season, the leg-spinner grabbed 21 wickets at an economy rate of 6.73. This is immense for a spinner to weave his magic. No batsman like to face him, and this works in the mind of batsmen. In the recent past, the youngster has shown that he can be an able pinch-hitter as well. That’s added bonus. In two seasons of IPL he has already picked 38 scalps.
The impact of Bangladeshi all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan huge. Shakib has a strong presence of mind and is a gifted all-rounder. He supports Rashid well and bowls in tandem. In terms of batting, he brings the solidity in the middle order. Shakib is a captain’s delight and he can thrive under pressure situations. Yusuf Pathan can also chip in when needed and gets you the odd wickets.
Leadership will play a huge role
SRH have abundance in terms of quality leadership. That bodes well for the side. Williamson’s calm presence and the ability to gain momentum as a leader makes him a strong force. He is calm and resonate. What makes him easy to watch is his application in tense situations. He knows the situation well and gains productivity.
Warner can be expected to give his valuable inputs during every game. He can also take over the mantle if Williamson sits out. The two have been the chief contributors for SRH’s consistency in the past few years. Williamson took over the job well from Warner in IPL 11. And there is so much trust in the camp. The presence of these two power-packed stars can help the side dominate the show.
A captain is as good as a side and the brilliance of the players makes the skippers well balanced. They enjoy the work and bring that stability needed to go far in the tournament.