RCB had defeated Sunrisers in their last two play-offs, but much water has flowed under the bridge since then with the Sunrisers showcasing a marked improvement in later matches.
The Sunrisers earned six points, after having won and lost three games each. Though they lost to Bangalore and Kolkata Knight Riders in their first two matches, they went on to win their next three games against Mumbai Indians, Gujarat Lions and Kings XI Punjab.
Hyderabad’s victory march, however, came to a standstill when Pune defeated them by a comprehensive 34 runs via the Duckworth-Lewis method in a rain-affected match when the two met here on April 26.
Hyderabad's strong batting line, save for opener Shikhar Dhawan, fell like nine pins and the team was all-out for a mere 118 runs.
Right from their captain David Warner, who was out for a duck, the other batsmen, including Aditya Tare, Eoin Morgan, Deepak Hooda and Moises Henriques, were dismissed after a disappointing performance.
In fact, it was their bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar who finally managed to boost up the score beyond 100 with his 21 runs in eight balls.
Famed Sunrisers bowler Ashish Nehra, who returned to the side after recovering from an injury, had said it was one of those bad games which can happen to any team and learn from mistakes is the way forward.
Thankfully for SRH, it has in its ranks players of high stature, including Kane Williamson and Trent Boult, who have not played so far in the tournament.
The team has the option of considering the inclusion of Williamson, who has just been named Captain of the New Zealand team, and Trent Boult to reinforce its strength.
Come tomorrow; it goes without saying that the famed batsmen of SRH are expected to come out with all guns blazing.
The home side has a potent bowling attack in Nehra, Bhuneshwar, latest sensation Mustafizur Rahman, Bipul Sharma and all-rounder Moises Henriques.
On the other hand, RCB is struggling to find momentum with just four points from five matches. The Bangalore side has won two and lost three matches so far. Though RCB's batting strength has depleted following Chris Gayle’s time-out, its Captain Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers are in great form and the team's batting relies heavily on the duo.
Last Updated 31, Mar 2018, 6:54 PM IST