The first South Indian derby of the Dream11 Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 is on the cards as Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) face Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Monday.
However, the two skippers David Warner (SRH) and Virat Kohli (RCB) might have to rely heavily on their bowlers this time around because the average first-innings score in Dubai is 144 and the team batting second at the venue in recent years has struggled enormously.
SRH has made the IPL playoffs every single time since winning the title in 2016. Despite having a poor season in 2019, where the team slumped after the departures of Warner and Jonny Bairstow, Hyderabad finished fourth.
The two major personnel changes made by Sunrisers for 2020 were the recruitment of World Cup-winning coach Trevor Bayliss to replace fellow Australian Tom Moody and the reinstatement of Warner as captain after Kane Williamson led the side in the last two editions.
Bangalore also has a new head coach in Australia’s Simon Katich, who took over from former India coach Gary Kirsten in August 2019. New Zealand’s Mike Hesson, who was with Kings XI Punjab the previous edition, has been appointed as the side’s director of cricket.
Free-scoring openers Warner, Bairstow and leggie Rashid Khan will be the first names on the SRH teamsheet. With Williamson relinquishing captaincy, his spot in the playing XI could be handed to a foreign recruit with all-round skills.
Hyderabad spent the least among eight teams during the auction in December 2019. The team already looked settled, and with the inclusion of Australian all-rounder Mitchell Marsh and Indian youngster Priyam Garg, it is even more formidable.
On the other hand, RCB went for the big-money signings yet again. The franchise had snapped South African all-rounder Chris Morris for a whopping sum of ₹10 crores. Australia’s limited-overs skipper Aaron Finch was signed for ₹4.4 crores and Kane Richardson, who has been replaced by countryman Adam Zampa, for ₹4 crores.
Morris and Finch could directly be drafted into the Royal Challengers’ playing XI. AB de Villiers will occupy one of the remaining two overseas players’ slots. Considering the spin-friendly nature of the Dubai track, the fourth foreigner will either be English all-rounder Moeen Ali or Zampa, who took 10 wickets in three ODIs against England recently.
Predicted Playing XI
Sunrisers Hyderabad – David Warner (c), Jonny Bairstow (wk), Manish Pandey, Priyam Garg, Vijay Shankar, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Abhishek Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Sandeep Sharma and Khaleel Ahmed
Royal Challengers Bangalore – Aaron Finch, Devdutt Padikkal, Virat Kohli (c), AB de Villiers (wk), Shivam Dube, Moeen Ali, Washington Sundar, Chris Morris, Navdeep Saini, Yuzvendra Chahal and Umesh Yadav
Dream11 Fantasy Team Tips
Fantasy Suggestion #1: Jonny Bairstow, Virat Kohli, Devdutt Padikkal, David Warner, Manish Pandey, Mohammad Nabi, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Navdeep Saini, Rashid Khan and Sandeep Sharma
Captain: Virat Kohli, Vice-Captain: Rashid Khan
Fantasy Suggestion #2: Jonny Bairstow, AB de Villiers, Devdutt Padikkal, David Warner, Manish Pandey, Mohammad Nabi, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Chris Morris, Rashid Khan and Khaleel Ahmed
Captain: David Warner, Vice-Captain: AB de Villiers