Dhawan holds key in must-win game
By Krishnakumar KH | ENS | Published: 30th September 2013 10:54 AM |
Sunrisers Hyderabad are in a position no team would want to be in. For, their progress in Champions League Twenty20 is dependent on what other teams do.
On Monday, they face a must-win battle against bottom-placed Brisbane Heat in their final group B match at the Sardar Patel Stadium, to retain even a glimmer of hope of moving into the semifinal.
The Hyderabad franchise, who finished fourth in the IPL last season, would have to win by a huge margin and hope that Trinidad and Tobago (T&T) – also on four points - win against Titans and then go on to lose their final game to the marauding Chennai Super Kings. Even then, the net run-rates would come into play. Under the circumstances, SH would definitely want to improve on their abysmal net run-rate of -0.622, currently placed fourth with four points from a win and two defeats.
The Shikhar Dhawan-led side, which came through the qualifying round with good performances, have gone off the boil after winning their opening group game against (T&T).
The last two matches – against Chennai Super Kings and Titans - have been forgettable, especially with their batting not putting the runs on the board and the bowlers leaking too many runs for comfort. While Dhawan and his partner Parthiv Patel have looked in good touch, they haven’t been able to convert that into tall scores. Confounding matters, their key overseas players JP Duminy, in particular, and all-rounders Darren Sammy and Thisara Perera have not imposed themselves on the opposition as the team management would have liked.
All the more worrisome has been their bowling, what with Dale Steyn in there, not going according to plans.
Heats, on the other hand, are already out having lost all three of their games. And teams can be at their dangerous best when they have nothing to lose and simply play for pride. The James Hopes-led side, which won the Big Bash League in Australia, could well end up putting a spanner in Sunrisers’ plans. In Daniel Christian and Chris Lynn, who have been below par so far, they have big-hitting playing who can dent their opponents’ net run-rate.
To avert that, the likes of Ishant Sharma and Amit Mishra, along with Sammy and Perera, have to pull up their socks, if the skies remain clear.
Nashua Titans are just a win away from the semifinals while Trinidad and Tobago face a test of survival. There is plenty to play for the two sides when they lock horns. With Chennai Super Kings having already booked a berth in the last four, Titans could well render the second match between SH and Brisbane Heat meaningless.