As we gear up for our all-important clash against Sunrisers Hyderabad at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium later tonight, our assistant coach Sridharan Sriram has backed our spinners Ravi Bishnoi and Krunal Pandya to play an integral part in the contest.

Playing away, Hyderabad’s in-form batting unit, featuring the likes of Travis Head, Heinrich Klaasen and Aiden Markram is expected to be the biggest challenge for us on Wednesday.

In fact, SRH have been the most successful team in powerplay in IPL 2024, having scored 700 runs at a staggering strike rate of 177. Not allowing Hyderabad batters to break free may become a vital factor in the match and Sriram believes our spinners are up to the challenge.

“I think in general, spinners have had a tough time in this tournament. Wickets have been so good and the scores have been high,” Sriram said.

“But, I think given our spinners, Ravi Bishnoi has bowled really well in the last couple of games. Krunal Pandya has been very good throughout, so I think we don’t really have reasons to worry about it (Hyderabad’s batting),” Sriram said.

Pandya and Bishnoi have accounted for 12 wickets between themselves this season. The former also boasts an economy rate of 7.60, the fifth-best among spinners in IPL 2024, while Bishnoi’s economy rate has also been a respectable 8.5.

Sriram also believes that we, as a team, have enough character to bounce back from our defeat to KKR in our last match and get the business done in Hyderabad.

“Just learn and move on. Pressure is the same for everyone. It is how we deal with it on the given day. I think we have got experienced enough players to deal with it. One game at a time, one venue at a time. Three away games are definitely challenging, but we are up for the challenge,” Sriram noted.

The result of Wednesday’s match may prove pivotal in the top-four race this season. A win can take us to third and two points clear of our nearest rivals in the playoff race.

A loss, meanwhile, will see us in a last-minute multi-team scramble, where net run rate may end up playing a big role.

“I think we have got to focus on winning. The net run rate will take care of itself if we win. So, I don’t think there has been any chat around net run rate. It is about how we beat the opposition and that is what matters on a given day.”

Mayank Yadav’s emergence was a big boon for us this season and an unfortunate injury means he can’t play any further role in helping us in the chase to the top four.

“Mayank is a superb talent. I think every team would love to have someone like him who can come and bowl that pace, get wickets through the middle. It is obviously disappointing that he hasn’t played for us. And all the games he has played, we have won.”

“So, we would love to have him any day in our side. But that is the business that we are in and that is the business he is in. His body is in. So we have got to take it in the chin and then get the other boys ready,” Sriram stated, addressing Mayank’s absence.