HYDERABAD: Gujarat Lions will be keen to shrug off the disappointment of a humiliating defeat against Kolkata Knight Riders as they gear up to face defending champion Sunrisers Hyderabad in their first away game of the Indian Premier League, here tomorrow.
Sunrisers are high on confidence after a comfortable 35-run win in their opening game against a depleted Royal Challengers Bangalore while Gujarat Lions were demolished by the KKR opening pair of Chris Lynn and Gautam Gambhir during their 184-run opening stand.
With Yuvraj Singh in prime form and Australian Moises Henriques and Ben Cutting making all-round contributions, Sunrisers are favourites going into the match.
Under the spotlight will be teenage Afghanistan leg-spinner Rashid Khan Arman, who got a couple of wickets on IPL debut.
For Gujarat, save Praveen Kumar's couple of overs, Gujarat's primarily Indian bowling line-up were taken to cleaners by the KKR opening duo. The likes of chinaman Shivil Kaushik, India discard Dhawal Kulkarni were hammered all around the park.
The defeat would certainly force Lions to ring in a few changes. Australia all-rounder James Faulkner may replace a horribly out-of-form and out-of-shape Dwayne Smith.
With Jason Roy and Brendon McCullum set to get a longer rope at the top of the order, Faulkner's better bowling ability makes him a more viable option that Smith, who is batting lower down the order.
Skipper Suresh Raina had acknowledged missing seasoned players like Dwayne Bravo and Ravindra Jadeja.
Their batting however, put up a decent show in batting with captain Suresh Raina and Dinesh Karthik scoring 68 not out and 47 runs respectively.
In the previous encounter between the two sides during the last edition's qualifier, Lions lost to Sunrisers despite ending as table toppers.
Sunrisers have a potent bowling attack wit Ashish Nehra, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Cutting and Rashid sharing the burden.
Captain David Warner's destructive batting prowess is well-known but his form has been on the wane of late.
Other opener Shikhar Dhawan scored a 40 in the last game and is eying to continue his good form hoping for an India recall in the Champions Trophy.
Seasoned Yuvraj Singh was at his best in that match scoring 62 runs in just 27 balls. SRH can take pride in its players like all-rounder Moises Henriques, young Deepak Hooda and wicket-keeper batsman Naman Ojha doing well for the side.
The teams (from):
Gujarat Lions: Suresh Raina (captain), Brandon McCullum, Dwayne Smith, Aaron Finch, Dinesh Karthik, Akshadeep Nath, Ishan Kishan, Manpreet Gony, Ravindra Jadeja, Shadab Jakati, Shivil Kaushik, Jason Roy, Dhawal Kulkarni, Praveen Kumar, Munaf Patel, Basil Thampi, Nathu Singh, Tejas Baroka, Shubham Agarwal, Shelly Shaurya, Andrew Tye and James Faulkner.
Sunrisers Hyderabad: David Warner (Captain), Tanmay Agarwal, Ricky Bhui, Bipul Sharma, Ben Cutting, Shikhar Dhawan, Eklavya Dwivedi, Moises Henriques, Deepak Hooda, Chris Jordan, Siddharth Kaul, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ben Laughlin, Abhimanyu Mithun, Mohammad Nabi, Mohammed Siraj, Mustafizur Rahman, Ashish Nehra, Naman Ojha (wk), Rashid Khan, Vijay Shankar, Barinder Sran, Pravin Tambe, Kane Williamson and Yuvraj Singh. PTI SJR KHS