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Indian Premier League 2021

IPL 2021: MI vs SRH: Player Battles

On a turning track that hands an edge to the bowlers, footwork and shot selection will determine the outcome of this battle.

IPL 2021: MI vs SRH: Player Battles

Both Rohit Sharma and David Warner carry good batting form into this fixture (File photo)


Rahul Kargal

Updated: 17 April 2021 11:28 AM GMT

IPL 2021 hasn't started on an ideal note for Sunrisers Hyderabad. They were in the driver's seat in the first two fixtures and yet, somehow failed to shut the door on their opposition.

The Mumbai Indians, meanwhile, learnt quickly after their opening loss to Bangalore and made amends in dramatic fashion to get the better of Kolkata.

In search of their first win of IPL 2021, Hyderabad takes on Mumbai on April 17.

And as you stay glued to your television sets, here are the top-five player battles to watch out for.

IPL 2021: MI vs SRH: Top-five Player Battles

#5 Rohit Sharma – Bhuvneshwar Kumar

With 43 (32) against Kolkata, Rohit Sharma showed that he means business and is in the mood to score big daddy runs.

To counter his, Hyderabad has the perfect man – Bhuvneshwar Kumar.

The seamer was brilliant for India against England in the recent white ball series. And for his performances, Kumar was awarded the ICC Player of the Month.

If Kumar can send back Rohit Sharma for cheap, Hyderabad will be in business.

#4 Surya Kumar Yadav – Rashid Khan

The Mumbai No. 3 is in the midst of a purple patch. His 56 (36) against Kolkata is precisely the reason why teams across the IPL plot special plans to counter the batsman.

Should he get going against Hyderabad, Warner will have more than just a bad headache.

Hyderabad does have one bowler that could upset Surya Kumar Yadav's applecart - Rashid Khan.

He is quick through the air, turns it both ways and doesn't quite give the batsmen time to settle down.

Khan will look to tie up Yadav and then induce a false stroke.

#3 Krunal Pandya – Abdul Samad

Against Kolkata, Krunal bowled a miserly four-over spell, conceded just 13 runs and picked up a wicket, while putting the brakes on Andre Russell.

And this will be precisely the role that Rohit Sharma will expect him to perform when Abdul Samad strides out to bat in the Hyderabad middle-order.

While Samad will look to cart the ball high and long, Krunal will be expected to outthink the former with variations in line, length and turn.

#2 Jasprit Bumrah – David Warner

Warner had a forgettable game with the bat in the first outing but against Bangalore, he did his bat do the talking.

His 54 (37) showed the Hyderabad loyals and the opposition that he means business in IPL 2021.

Mumbai's go-to man to counter an attacking Warner will be Jasprit Bumrah. If the speedster can find a way to break the defences of the Aussie southpaw, Mumbai will be able to get to the fragile Hyderabad middle-order in a hurry.

#1 Rahul Chahar – Jonny Bairstow

With his 4/27, Rahul Chahar's proved beyond doubt that he's a strike bowler that must not be treated lightly. And with the Chennai track turning square every time a finger spinner gives the ball a royal tweak, Chahar will be bowling with his tail up.

Hyderabad, therefore, will expect Bairstow to take up this battle against Chahar.

Coming in at number four for Hydrabad, the Englishman will have to negotiate the tricky middle-over for Hyderabad and meet the Chahar challenge head-on.

Footwork and an effective sweep shot will go a long way in determining the outcome of this battle.

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