It has been days since Kings XI skipper Ravichandran Ashwin affected mankading to dismiss Jos Buttler in their opening encounter against Rajasthan Royals but the controversy surrounding the incident refuses to die. Ashwin’s act of mankading certainly seems to have drawn a certain amount of fear among the opposition batsmen as Sunrisers Hyderabad opener David Warner was spotted planting his bat deep in his crease at the non striker’s batsman when the off spinner was bowling during the 22nd match of IPL 2019 on Monday.
Kings XI Punjab captain Ravi Ashwin won the toss and opted to field first against Sunrisers Hyderabad at IS Bindra Stadium in Mohali. Punjab brought back Mujeeb Ur Rahman and Ankit Rajpoot to the fold while Sunrisers stand-in skipper Bhuvneshwar Kumar said they will go with the same team. It all happened during the 7th over of Hyderabad’s innings when Ashwin introduced himself into the attack.
David Warner, who was at the non striker’s end, was seen keeping his head down and watching both the bowler and the crease in a bid to make sure that he doesn’t back up too far. Warner’s approach was different for other Punjab spinner in Mujeeb Ur Rahman. His earlier mankading incident against Rajasthan Royals wicket-keeper batsman Jos Buttler seems to have built him a reputation of repeating the same in the mind’s of opposition batsmen.
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This game would be an opportunity for both teams to draw level at the top of the table on eight points with Kolkata Knight Riders and Chennai Super Kings. Both sides have lost their most recent fixtures and will be looking to get back on the winning trail. For the Sunrisers, the wheels came off properly when they were bowled out for 90 by Mumbai Indians on Saturday. They need a sizeable improvement in the batting department if they are to remain among the front runners.
The competition’s leading runs-scorers, David Warner and Jonny Bairstow, will once again be crucial at the top of the order for Sunrisers. The Kings XI were caught short with the bat against Super Kings on Saturday losing by 22 runs in Chennai. But they have a very capable top order and a balanced bowling attack and will be wanting to bounce straight back.