Last season, David Warner was a man on a mission. He came, he saw and he delivered. Warner had missed out on the season before, but knowing well that he had limited time before joining the World Cup camp, promised the coach that he’d score a minimum of 500 runs. He plundered 692 runs for Sunrisers Hyderabad in 12 outings but that proved inadequate as the team faltered and finished fourth.
Trevor Bayliss has replaced Tom Moody as the coach and Warner is back at the helm this season, as the Sunrisers aim to reprise their 2016 feat. It’s easier said than done.

The Hyderabad outfit will be wary of the pitfalls that derailed their campaign last season when they begin their campaign against Virat Kohli‘s star-studded Royal Challengers Bangalore in Dubai on Monday, notably the dysfunctional middle order.

The Warner-Jonny Bairstow combination – beneficiaries of the three-day quarantine rule – was so successful that the middle order had little to do, but on occasions they were required to step up, they were found wanting. The Sunrisers believe they have addressed the situation with their latest acquisitions, but the fact remains that they would be relying heavily on the top three of Warner, Bairstow and Manish Pandey.
The last five games between the sides have seen honours being shared with one game abandoned.
It should be a game of wits as well as resolve what with the players – barring the Australians, English and West Indians – looking to dust off the rust.

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