Indian Premier League Cricket - Sunrisers Hyderabad v Royal Challengers Bangalore Preview

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Published: 19/05/2014

This is a key match for the hopes of both the sunrisers Hyderabad and the Royal Challengers Bangalore in this seasonís IPL tournament. the sunrisers must win if they are to retain a realistic hope of qualifying for the knockout stages of the competition. While RCB have been nowhere near their best so far in IPL 2014, and will be looking for their big name batting line-up to fire in this one.

One big plus point for the Sunrisers so far in the IPL is that theyíve been privileged to have the competitionís leading wicket taker in their line-up. Bhuvneshwar Kumarís medium pace has been hugely successful, with his tally of 18 wickets so far in the IPL only being matched by Mohit Sharma of the Chennai Super Kings.

Kumarís better average means that he is the 2014 IPLís premier bowler at the moment, though, and given that the Sunrisers can also call upon the fearsome fast bowling of Dale Steyn, they can quite reasonably claim to have one of the best bowling attacks in the competition.

Although the Sunrisers batting has not been as successful, they do boast the destructive talent of Australian David Warner, who has made his presence felt in this yearís competition. Warner has already whacked four fifties at a strike rate of over 130, and is always one to look out for when the Sunrisers are batting.

However, this match-up looks like a classic example of a strong bowling line-up facing up against a fantastic batting line-up. RCB are blessed with unquestionably the strongest batting in the competition, and it has been something of a surprise that it hasnít really performed as expected. Injuries to the talismanic Chris Gayle have not helped RCBís performances, and they must hope that he can ignite his 2014 IPL campaign in due course.

Aside from Gayleís relative malaise, one of the best limited overs players in the world has also been desperately out of form. Virat Kohli has not really performed during the 2014 IPL at all, and itís rare for such an outstanding natural talent to look so out of touch. With Gayle and Kohli struggling, AB de Villiers has been absolutely key to the RCB cause, scoring three fifties and nearly 350 runs. Yuvraj Singh has also recaptured some form and has also made three fifties, and RCB and still in touch with the play-off places, despite their moderate form.

It is hard to believe that such an obviously brilliant batting line-up has delivered so little so far this year. One feels that at some point RCBís batting must start to deliver, but it will be tested in this game by the formidable and wily Sunrisers bowling attack. Nonetheless, one only has to look at the names in the RCB line-up, and you inevitably feel that they have to hit their straps at some point soon. Thus, Iím backing RCB to come out on top in this one.

Tip: Royal Challengers Bangalore to win

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