Sunrisers Hyderabad’s over-reliance on their opening duo has hurt them once again, as they lost the opportunity to finish second in the league. SRH were 86 for 1 in the twelfth over and were well on course to chase the target of 171 posted by Kolkata Knight Riders, but once again their middle-order failed to deliver as they lost the match by 22 runs.
SRH pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who along with Mustafizur Rahman bowled brilliantly in the death overs to restrict KKR at 171, brushed aside any concerns with regards to the middle-order and said that the middle-order would deliver if given more opportunity.
“If you see, in most matches, our openers have played till the 10th or the 12th over,” he said. “If our middle-order gets more opportunity, there are chances that they’ll score more runs.
“If you see, someone from the middle-order has always stood up. They’ve ensured that their strike rate is more than 150 and got us quick runs.”
After the dismissal of Shikhar Dhawan in the twelfth over, SRH kept on losing wickets at regular intervals which tilted the match towards KKR.
Bhuvneshwar acknowledged the sudden turn and attributed the team’s defeat to the loss of momentum in the middle overs. “When we lost 2-3 wickets in the middle overs, we lost all the momentum. We were in a good position till the 10th over,” he pointed out. “Shikhar getting out was a big blow. After that, we lost (Deepak) Hooda and (Kane Williamson) as well. That’s where we lost the game.”
Meanwhile, Royal Challengers Bangalore’s win against Delhi Daredevils helped RCB to finish the league stage at the second position in the league table due to a superior run-rate.
While SRH will have to play the eliminator against KKR. Talking about that, Kumar said: “When we get to play them again in the playoffs, we know what went wrong and what we can do to change that.”