Kolkata v Hyderabad, IPL 2013, Kolkata April 13, 2013

Will Sunrisers continue to surprise?


Match facts

April 14, 2013
Start time 1600 local (1030 GMT)

Big Picture

Sunrisers Hyderabad have been the surprise team of the tournament so far. Widely expected to be one of the whipping boys, they have begun with three wins out of four matches, mainly due to their exceptional bowling spearheaded by the best bowler in the world, Dale Steyn. The batting is clearly the weaker link in the side, but with the bowlers limiting the opposition to smallish totals in most games so far, that chink hasn't been exploited much yet. On Friday, the bowlers chipped in with the bat as well, as Amit Mishra and Steyn kept their head to successfully complete a tense chase.

While a share of the top spot will be a huge boost for the Sunrisers, there is still a long way to go in the tournament. Last season's cellar-dwellers, Pune Warriors, also began with three wins in their first four matches, but soon after they embarked on a 11-match losing streak which they only snapped earlier this week.

While the West Indies captain, allrounder Darren Sammy, is flying in for Sunrisers, whether he'll be ready in time for this game is uncertain. Sammy had missed the start of the tournament for the birth of his child. He tweeted in the early hours of Sunday that he was on his way: "Two more flights to @SunRisers. #IPL6 soon begin for me.. Can't wait."

Sunrisers are up against defending champions Kolkata Knight Riders, who have made an indifferent start. They began well enough, with their trump card Sunil Narine bamboozling Delhi Daredevils, but were then undone on a pacy pitch in Jaipur. They could do little to change the result in their third match as Chris Gayle, as he has so many times at the Chinnaswamy Stadium, led a demolition job.

With opener Manvinder Bisla getting single-digit scores in each of the three matches so far, Knight Riders will be toying with the idea of bringing in Brendon McCullum at the top of the order, perhaps in place of England batsman Eoin Morgan.

Players to watch

Thisara Perera is the only game-changing overseas allrounder currently with the Sunrisers, and vital to the balance of the side. Capable of bowling a full quota of overs, and providing some much-needed humpty towards the end of the innings, Perera has a big role to play. He will want to make amends after holing out taking on the man at long-on when he was the only recognised batsman in the middle and with a run-a-ball needed in a tight chase against Daredevils.

L Balaji was one of the outstanding bowlers for Knight Riders in the previous season. "Bala is the unsung hero, he's been brilliant all through," Gautam Gambhir had said after last year's final, saying that they won the title for Balaji. Narine may have hogged the headlines through the tournament, but Balaji's miserly economy-rate of 5.40 was also critical to Knight Riders' campaign. They will want him to replicate that form as they look to get their season back on track.

Stats and trivia

  • Narine might only be starting his second season for Knight Riders, but he's already the franchise's highest wicket-taker with 36.
  • Yusuf Pathan scored at a strike-rate of 161.24 for Rajasthan Royals, but his scoring-rate with Knight Riders is only 125.85.
  • Steyn has not only taken plenty of wickets this season, he has been extremely difficult to score off as well. His economy-rate of 4.73 is best of the tournament (min five overs).


"Throughout the IPL I will pick his brain and see what I can get off from him."
Dale Steyn wants to learn as much as he can from Pakistan great Waqar Younis during the IPL

"Lots of games are at home, the next game is at home and hopefully we can turn it around as we did last time around."
Gautam Gambhir, Knight Riders captain

Siddarth Ravindran is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Peace on April 14, 2013, 11:19 GMT

    The way the KKR has started the match,, I guess KKR is gonna win it with a good margin.. (Unless if Mr. great Sanga plays blazing innings and stops KKR winning) Good, KKR can improve net run rate.

  • Rizmy on April 14, 2013, 10:49 GMT

    Read my post again... he has scored the most runs, and his strike rate is only 4 short of what white has! i know he is not performing to his potential or expectations... but he is right up their with the best 3 batters in the team... next to thisara perera tying with white!if you drop him you'd have to replace him instead of someone lesser?? ready to compromise his captaincy input for it>??? i dont think so!

  • Peace on April 14, 2013, 10:17 GMT

    Ya. Mr. Sanga is realy great,, but ask him to perform well na.. only captaincy will not work dear..

  • shashi on April 14, 2013, 10:09 GMT

    intresting match to look out for b/w KKR vs SRH the trumph cards for the both teams is their bowling.it will be an intresting contest b/w Narine and Dale Steyn the match result will depend on this guns.picking wkts will do it .who will be going to pick up the wkts .is that going to be the fast and full and swinging Dale steyn or is that going to be the mistery and variations of good off spin of Narine lat's what out this soon from 4pm........

  • Peace on April 14, 2013, 10:08 GMT

    @Crickey_is_LIFE: Mr. Sanga who comes at 1st down may not be a orange cap holder but at least he should be in top 10 right?? you also accept that.. and you cannot compare with Parera or White who comes in the last 5 overs most of the time. Sanga is not at all doing justice to the team as a batsmen. Only with his captaincy ability he will be a burden on the team. How can he ask his co-players to get runs when himself is not getting runs? He loose his control on players soon if he continues like that... A captain should be a like a Dhoni.. or at least Virat... or like a Dravid,, or Gambir or Jayawedhane.. who performs and ask others to perform..

  • Dummy4 on April 14, 2013, 10:07 GMT

    pls chance this team

    gambhir.kalis,das,macullam,tiwari,morgan, yusuf,rajat ,shami,balaji,narine kkr win this team pls chance shami.kkr manager

  • Thilanka on April 14, 2013, 9:57 GMT

    Hey guys, what diid you know about sanga ??? With his experience he transformed the worst team in ipl into the most dangerous team around. In last match sunil gavaskar said srh not given local bating talent such as dhoni got raina,jadeja,murali vije,badrinath / ponting got karthik,rohit,raindu,sachin and who told sanga is in out of form last match he was the highest scorer. Look @ his bowling changes like pune match stayn given 18th over mathews was in non striker , reddy has to ball last over but not needed, look at last match for viru he placed white in 4th slip position, did you know he is without one bowler, my team is 1.perera 2.reddy 3.sanga 4.vihari 5.parthew 6.sammy 7.ravi teja 8.ashish reddy 9.mishra 10.stayn 11.sharma ( i believe perera should open with field restriction )

  • Ramo on April 14, 2013, 9:43 GMT

    Sunrises should bring in spammy for white when he arrives. He can bowl wel and thump the ball hard when he needs to. He provides a good all round performance and add more balance and consistency than an inconsistent white.

  • Dummy4 on April 14, 2013, 9:41 GMT

    can we know when will SHIKAR DHAWAN be back? Coz his presence will increase the strength of SRH a lot

  • Dummy4 on April 14, 2013, 9:40 GMT

    Come on Sun Risers Plz Plz Plz Giv the Young And Dashing W/K Batsman Quinton DeKock a chance...am sure he wil be as asset to ur team..

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