Millennium Post

Pune Warriors’ chance to rise, Hyderabad eye momentum

On a high after having pulled off a heist against two-time winners Chennai Super Kings, Pune Warriors will look to further consolidate their position as they lock horns with Sunrisers Hyderabad in their IPL match on Wednesday.

The 24-run win over Chennai on Monday was no less then an achievement for Pune as the Allan Donald-coached side had gone into the match with three defeats from four outings, and the odds were heavily stacked against them.

Opener Aaron Finch and Steven Smith plundered runs at will during their electrifying knocks against the Super Kings, and both the batsmen would look to continue in same vein at the Subrata Roy Sahara stadium.

Leading the side in the absence of regular skipper Angelo Mathews, Ross Taylor did a commendable job against a team that has got the best record in IPL. The New Zealander, though, would not be happy with his individual performance. The oner-down batsman would love to get a big one against the Warriors and the set the tone for the rest. While Robin Uthappa got out after getting his eye in, Manish Pandey and Abhishek Nayar were failures, and tomorrow’s match would provide them with another opportunity to make their presence felt. Bhuvneshwar Kumar led the bowling admirably against Chennai, with support coming in from Ashok Dinda and Mitchell Marsh. If they can stop the star-studded CSK line-up from running away with the game, the Pune bowlers will certainly fancy their chances against Hyderabad. The visitors will be keen to get back to winning ways after being beaten comprehensively by Kolkata Knight Riders at the Eden Gardens. They are aware that the one up next is also away from home, and it will take a lot of effort for them to emerge victorious.

On paper Pune may not be as strong as Kolkata, but the visitors know they can ill afford to make the mistake of taking their upcoming opponents lightly. Hammered by the likes of Gautam Gambhir, Jacques Kallis and Eoin Morgan the other day, Hyderabad bowlers will hope to have a better outing against Pune.

Dale Steyn, as usual, will lead the Hyderabad attack, with Ishant Sharma, Amit Mishra and Thisara Perera playing the supporting role. As far as their batting is concerned, skipper Kumar Sangakkara and Cameron White will shoulder the bulk of the responsibilities besides Perera, who has the ability to hit the ball hard.

Hyderabad would be better off with substantial contributions from Parthiv Patel and D B Ravi Teja. Hyderabad have so far won three of their five outings in the tournament.
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