Ranji Trophy 2018-19: Hyderabad aims for fresh start against confident Delhi

It is time for Hyderabad to redraw the strategy after it had the satisfaction of denying Kerala three points and then being at the receiving end against Tamil Nadu.

Hyderabad skipper Akshath Reddy and B. Sandeep during a practice session at Rajiv Gandhi international Stadium.   -  K.V.S. Giri

Hyderabad needs to raise the bar against a confident Delhi when the two teams meet in the third round of the Ranji Trophy championship Group-B match at the Rajiv Gandhi Stadium, starting from Tuesday.

It is time for Hyderabad to redraw the strategy after it had the satisfaction of denying Kerala three points and then being at the receiving end against Tamil Nadu.

Captain Akshath Reddy, who scored a double century against Tamil Nadu, doesn’t actually rue the delayed declaration against a spirited Tamil Nadu which eventually turned the tables on his team by forcing it be content with just one point.

“We had more than 150 overs to bowl them out and couldn’t do so. So, I don’t think there was any delay in declaration. Yes, we need to start winning matches now,” Akshath said. “The pitch looks good and should hopefully yield a result,” he said.

For his part, Delhi captain Nitish Rana confessed that it would badly miss the services of Gautam Gambhir and Ishant Sharma for different reasons.

“But, in Mithun Manhas who is wonderful coach and with half the team having played with him, we can always look up to him even as we chase an outright win,” Rana said.

“I think toss will be crucial in tomorrow’s match against a very good side,” he said.

For, Hyderabad, two points from the first two games is not the kind of start it should have looked for before the first match on home turf.

The onus is clearly on the opening pair of southpaw Tanmay Agarwal and Akshath Reddy to give the desired starts for the others like Rohit Rayudu, Himalay Agarwal, B. Sandeep and wicketkeeper batsman K. Sumanth to come tood.

In bowling, the variety by way of pace trio of left-armer Chama Milind, Ravi Kiran and D. B. Ravi Teja and spinners leggie Akash Bhandari, offie Saketh Sai Ram and left-armer Mehdi Hasan should be spot on to get full points.

On the other hand, Delhi, with three points from the drawn game against Himachal Pradesh, would love to keep the momentum going.

The teams (from): Delhi: Nitish Rana (capt), Dhruv Shorey (vice-capt), Hiten Dalal, Himmat Singh, Amuj Rawat, Kulwant Khejroliya, Vikas Mishra, Lalit Yadav, Simarjit Singh, Vaibhav Rawal, Varun Sood, Sarthak Ranjan, Prashant Bhandari Pulkit Narang and Gaurav Kumar.

Hyderabad: P. Akshath Reddy (capt), Tanmay Agarwal, B. Sandeep, K. Rohit Rayudu, K. Sumanth, Mehdi Hasan, M. Ravi Kiran, Chama Milind, Saketh Sairam, Akash Bhandari, T. Ravi Teja, Tanay Thyagarajan, Himalay Agarwal, K.S.K. Chaitanya and Mudassir Hussain.