Wary Lions face upbeat Sunrisers in tricky away game
Gujarat Lions will be keen to shrug off the disappointment of a humiliating defeat against Kolkata Knight Riders as they gear up to face defending champion Sunrisers Hyderabad in their first away game of the Indian Premier League, here on Sunday. Sunrisers are high on confidence after a comfortable 35-run win in their opening game against a depleted Royal Challengers Bangalore while Gujarat Lions were demolished by the KKR opening pair of Chris Lynn and Gautam Gambhir during their 184-run opening stand. With Yuvraj Singh in prime form and Australian Moises Henriques and Ben Cutting making all-round contributions, Sunrisers are favourites going into the match. Under the spotlight will be teenage
Afghanistan leg-spinner Rashid Khan Arman, who got a couple of wickets on IPL debut.
For Gujarat, save Praveen Kumar's couple of overs, Gujarat's primarily Indian bowling line-up were taken to cleaners by the KKR opening duo. The likes of chinaman Shivil Kaushik, India discard Dhawal Kulkarni were hammered all around the park. The defeat would certainly force Lions to ring in a few changes. Australia all-rounder James Faulkner may replace a horribly out-of-form and out-of-shape Dwayne Smith.
With Jason Roy and Brendon McCullum set to get a longer rope at the top of the order, Faulkner's better bowling ability makes him a more viable option that Smith, who is batting lower down the order.
Skipper Suresh Raina had acknowledged missing seasoned players like Dwayne Bravo and Ravindra Jadeja.