Sunrisers looks to bounce back against Mumbai

The hunger to re-discover the winning touch by both the teams should make the clash between the high-profile Mumbai Indians and the Sunrisers Hyderabad an absorbing contest at the Rajiv Gandhi Stadium here on Monday.

Sunrisers Hyderabad has lost its first two matches in IPL 2016 season.   -  KVS Giri

The hunger to re-discover the winning touch by both the teams should make the clash between the high-profile Mumbai Indians and the Sunrisers Hyderabad an absorbing contest at the Rajiv Gandhi Stadium here on Monday.

In a way, inconsistency, especially in the early phase of the IPL has been the bane of the Mumbai outfit — it lost its first four games last season before going on to win the title itself. But, fresh season and fresh challenges automatically mean that it cannot take things for granted in the hope of seeking an encore of its fortunes.

>Read: An exclusive interview with David Warner

Significantly, Mumbai lost both its home games and won the away game against Kolkata Knight Riders at the Eden Gardens so far and hence the Rohit Sharma-led team can be a dangerous side in its bid to regain the winning momentum.

“Batting let us down badly in the two games at home. We have to look forward and move ahead. For that, we need to put runs on the board first,” confessed Rohit after the loss to Gujarat Lions on Saturday night.

Not surprisingly, Sunrisers Hyderabad captain David Warner feels that Mumbai, smarting under the defeat in a close game against Gujarat Lions in the previous game, will come out firing all on cylinders and that his team has to be on guard.

“They are going to be really hungry for success. And, we have to stop talking about our plans and start executing them. We have to really bat and bowl well to win the game,” Warner commented on the eve of the match. And, even the captain backs the struggling Shikhar Dhawan saying that he is a class player and should get going very soon.

It is obvious that Sunrisers too is not in the comfort zone having lost the two games it played so far — one away in Bengaluru and the one at home against Kolkata Knight Riders.

But, again, the batting fortunes of Sunrisers revolve around the brilliance of captain and opener David Warner. It is imperative for him to play a big innings. Or else, even handy contributions from the reputed ones later on like Eoin Morgan and Naman Ojha (both clicked against KKR) would be reduced to nought as the team invariably ends up with a below-par score on what is expected to be another perfect batting wicket.

In bowling, the one player who stood out so far was Bangladesh’s Mustafizur Rahman. One of the best images of the IPL so far has been the way Mustafizur saw KKR’s big-hitting Andre Russel lose his balance in making a valiant attempt to dig out a yorker.

Clearly, the onus is on Sunrisers to take optimum advantage of playing at home with an improved all-round performance against a formidable and determined Mumbai outfit.