IPL 2023: Bhuvneshwar Kumar To Lead Sunrisers Hyderabad In Aiden Markram’s Absence
Mar 30, 2023 at 5:37 PM
Veteran fast-bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar will be leading Sunrisers Hyderabad in their opening clash of IPL 2023 in absence of designated skipper Aiden Markram. The sixteenth edition of the competition will get underway on Friday (March 31) with a mouthwatering clash between defending champions Gujarat Titans and four-time champions Chennai Super Kings.
SRH, on the other hand, will open their campaign on Sunday (April 2) against last year’s runner-up Rajasthan Royals. However, they will be without their newly-appointed skipper Markram for the tournament-opener as the South Africa star will be busy with his international commitments.
Markram and few other South Africa players will arrive in India later next month after the two-match ODI series against Netherlands that will finish on Sunday, the day SRH begin their campaign in IPL 2023. The series is crucial for South Africa’s direct qualification for the ODI World Cup.
The Proteas, who suffered a shock loss against Netherlands in the T20 World Cup last year, need to win both the ODIs (without over-rate penalties) to keep alive their hopes of sealing a direct qualification for the World Cup. The South Africa players including Markram are expected to arrive in India on April 3.
SRH to begin campaign under Bhuvneshwar Kumar:
With Markram in South Africa, SRH will be opening their campaign under one of their most experienced campaigners – Bhuvneshwar Kumar. The IPL 2016 champions will be desperate to make a solid start to their campaign after their forgettable outing in 2022.
They finished eighth in the ten-team competition last year after managing 6 wins from 14 games. The poor season led to a number of changes in the squad including the appointment of Markram as the new captain. After releasing former captain Kane Williamson, SRH named Markram as his replacement after the latter guided Sunrisers Eastern Cape to title in the inaugural edition of SA20.
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Markram led the team from the very front as he finished the competition as the third-highest run-getter, scoring 369 runs at a strike rate of 127. He also impressed with the ball, taking 11 wickets at a stunning economy of 6.19. Meanwhile, SRH will also miss the services of other South African players in their squad for the game against Royals as Marco Jansen and Heinrich Klaasen will also be busy with international commitments.
Talking about Bhuvneshwar Kumar, he is not new to leading the team in IPL. Having been playing for SRH since 2013, the star pacer led the team in six games in 2019 and once in 2022. Sunrisers won two of those seven matches.