Sunrisers looking to bounce back against KKR

"KKR has over time shown it is a strong team. But each side in the IPL is well balanced. There will be no so-called easy game," said coach Tom Moody.

Sunrisers Hyderabad players during a training session ahead of their match against Kolkata Knight Riders.   -  PTI

Despite the defeat to the Royal Challengers Bangalore in its opening game, Sunrisers Hyderabad coach Tom Moody was upbeat on the eve of the face-off against the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR).

“We go into this (Saturday’s) game with a lot of confidence drawn from our last match against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB),” said Moody. “There were a lot of things we could take from that game in Bangalore. It gave us a lot of confidence with bat and ball.”

“The unavailability of Ashish Nehra, sidelined by injury, would impact any side he’d play for. But we have strong support behind our bowling. Barinder Sran and Abhinav Mithun form a talented back up,” Moody said.

“As in the past, it is a very good wicket,” he said, predicting a high scoring game for the morrow. Last year the track didn’t take much spin but the side is sufficiently equipped on that score. “Bipul Sharma had a good domestic season and Deepak Hooda would come in handy as an off-spinner in addition to his power hitting abilities,” stressed the SRH coach.

The strapping Aussie was not unduly worried about Shikhar Dhawan’s form. “Shikhar never shies away from hard work and it’s only a matter of time before he comes up with a match-winning knock. A big score from him is around the corner,” assured Moody.

Assessing the opposition, he said, “KKR has over time shown it is a strong team. But each side in the IPL is well balanced. There will be no so-called easy game.” Striking a contrast he said, “Our batting form is up to scratch. It is just a case of getting momentum. If we had bowled a little better in the last two overs (in the match against RCB), we could have chased down the 205 or 200.”

KKR captain Gautam Gambhir was no less optimistic. Happy with his side’s batting, he said his squad was also quite capable of defending sizeable totals.

On Jacques Kallis as coach, he said, “It was a natural transition from player to mentor to coach. He has been one from the family,” KKR’s opening batsman said. On the game lost to Mumbai, he said, “All credit to the opposition. They played smart cricket,” he said.

Asked if it was an embarrassment of riches considering the talent in his side, he said it was good to have options. On added responsibility for Surya Kumar Yadav, Gambhir said Yadav was elevated to vice-captain precisely for that. “Let’s see how we can use him best. We have enough quality to go all the way,” he concluded.