Kolkata, March 23: He may not be captain, but David Warner continues to have leadership role at Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH), head coach Tom Moody said ahead of their opening tie against Kolkata Knight Riders.
“Warner is available. He is jumping out of his skin to start his campaign,” Moody said.
“Davey still has a leadership role within the group. In the middle with the bat in hand and around training and out in the middle when it comes to strategising.”
Talking about handing over the baton to New Zealand captain Kane Williamson last season after Warner was not allowed to play the IPL due to his role in ball-tampering, Moody said the Kiwi is admired globally and led so well that the team management decided to stick with him.
“We felt there was no need to make any change from last year. Kane is admired globally and what he did with us last year, we felt it made sense to continue the continuity,” he said.
Moody dropped a hint that Jonny Bairstow could open with Warner as his wicket-keeping gives the team a balance. “Picking Bairstow up in the auction was an important strategy because we wanted an overseas player who could give us the option to keep wickets.
“Having an impact player like Bairstow in the similar mold of Jos Buttler gives that option and flexibility to have that keeping role nailed down and have an impact player at the same time.”
“We are conscious of making sure that we have all the right combinations for any situation. The most important thing we have is the constant communication not only with foreign players, but domestic players as well.
“All of them (of the 23) present a strong case to be in the XI tomorrow,” Moody said.
Moody also praised the comeback man Wriddhiman Saha who played in the second qualifier despite a broken thumb. “It’s great to see Saha back. It’s a long journey with recovery. He has shown a lot of character and courage. His keeping is second to none — an outstanding glovesman.”
Moody also hailed the IPL schedule saying it’s great that the league stage is getting over by May 5, as all the eight franchises will miss out on their top players ahead of the World Cup.
“A lot of teams aren’t going to be affected too badly. Maybe when it comes to finals, it might be a different story, but certainly in the main stage of the tournament, most players will be available.”