The match no. 40 of the Indian Premier League 2020 will witness a battle between two most in-form teams in the league, Gujarat Titans and Sunrisers Hyderabad at Wankhede Stadium on Wednesday. Both the teams are coming on the back of a series of victories and would be looking to continue their winning run.
GT are at the top of the table, having won six out of seven matches at the halfway mark. They have 12 points to their credit with a net run-rate of 0.396. Hardik Pandya’s men have won their last three games and are coming off an eight-run victory over Kolkata Knight Riders in the most recent fixture.
Pandya continued his great form and hammered a third consecutive fifty for the Titans. His 67 off 49 helped them reach a total of 156/9, despite a late collapse that saw them score only 29/7 in the last five. Defending the target, Mohammed Shami (2/20) and Rashid Khan (2/22) were outstanding, while the rest of the pacers contributed well to restrict the opponent to 148/8.
SRH turned things around incredibly after their first two losses and have won five matches on the trot. They have 10 points to their credit with net run-rate reading 0.691. In their previous game, Sunrisers decimated Royal Challengers Bangalore at Brabourne Stadium.
Marco Jansen ran through the RCB top order with a sensational new ball spell, picking three for 25. T Natarajan was outstanding as well with his three for 10 in three overs as Hyderabad dismantled the opponent for just 68. Abhishek Sharma showed his promise yet again with a 47 off 28 to help SRH mow down the target in eight overs.
Gujarat Titans’ only loss in the tournament came against the Sunrisers. The Titans were defeated by eight wickets when these two teams met earlier in the season. They’d be hoping to avenge the loss.
Hardik Pandya, renowned as one of the best finishers in the game, has moved up the order for Gujarat Titans in order to control the innings and he has done that very well. The all-rounder has scored 295 runs in seven matches of the IPL 2022 at an average of 74 while striking at 137, including three back to back fifties. He has also picked four wickets but is unlikely to bowl with injury concerns. Hardik remains an invaluable player just as a batter.
Rahul Tripathi, someone who gives his all for the team, is one of the most underrated players in the league. The right-hand batter has been outstanding in the IPL 2022, scoring 212 runs in seven innings at an average of 53 while striking at an incredible 175. Tripathi has hammered one fifty in the season. Batting at no. 3, he could be a game-changer in this clash against Gujarat.
Marco Jansen has proved himself on the big stage as a very good bowler. The left-arm pacer has the pace, ability to move the ball and good control. He has picked six wickets in the season at an economy of 7.15. Jansen is coming off a terrific spell of three for 25 and will be a big threat to the Titans top order.
Little needs to be said about Rashid Khan, who is the best spinner in the T20 arena. The Afghan leg-spinner has an extraordinary record in the IPL, having claimed 101 wickets in 83 games at an economy of 6.35. Rashid has picked eight wickets in the IPL 2022 at 6.50 rpo, with best figures of 3/22. He’s coming off a ‘Player of the match’ performance of 2/22 in the last game.
GT have built a very good bowling attack, comprising Rashid Khan, Lockie Ferguson and Mohammed Shami. The inclusion of Alzarri Joseph has only strengthened them further. The batting unit, however, looks a bit weak and highly dependent on in-form Hardik. Shubman Gill’s form is a major concern for them.
The Sunrisers team has gelled together extremely well. Their batting unit, especially the middle order of Rahul Tripathi, Aiden Markram and Nicholas Pooran looks very solid. The SRH bowling attack has everything except leg-spin. They have pace in Umran Malik, death bowling in T Natarajan and an excellent new ball pair of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Marco Jansen.
Overall, Kane Williamson’s Orange army look like a more balanced side and are not dependent on a few players. Expect SRH to come out victorious in this clash on Wednesday.