The Gujarat Lions will hope to make full use of their second life when they play the Sunrisers Hyderabad in IPL 2016 Qualifier 2 at the Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi on Friday. After failing to grasp at their first opportunity to make the final, GL have been given one more chance, a chance they must take if they are to face RCB in the final of the IPL.
GL did a lot of things right with the ball in Qualifier 1 on Tuesday, but were beaten by the genius that goes by the name of AB De Villiers. When someone as good as that wins a match single-handedly, all you can do is shrug your shoulders, move on and look forward to that next assignment.
That challenge comes in the shape of the Sunrisers Hyderabad, who were brilliant with the ball and in the field against KKR. Unlike the Gujarat Lions, the SRH bowlers never relinquished the pressure on the KKR batsmen, allowing them to defend a par total pretty comfortably.
If the Sunrisers Hyderabad harbour hopes of making it to their first ever IPL final, their bowlers, led by Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Mustafizur Rahman, need to be at their best against a formidable Gujarat Lions batting lineup, which boasts of Brendon McCullum, Suresh Raina, Aaron Finch and Dwayne Smith.
Of course, the Sunrisers Hyderabad have their own superstar batsmen in David Warner, Yuvraj Singh and Shikhar Dhawan and what the skipper Warner will want is an all-round performance, the kind they managed so often in the middle phase of the tournament.
If Warner and the middle order click, the Sunrisers look a different team. The middle order did reasonably well against KKR, coping with the double blow of Warner and Moises Henriques pretty well, with Yuvraj bringing all his experience into play. Yuvraj will need to do that again, because the veteran left-hander is crucial to SRH's fortunes.
While the onus is on Yuvraj to step up with bat, ball, if he gets an opportunity, and in the field, the same can be said of the Gujarat Lions captain Raina. The left-hander, who has a really good record in IPL knockout matches, has been quite disappointing in IPL 2016, and while he has captained the team well, GL need a bit more of that leading-by-example business come Qualifier 2.
If Raina does that, the Gujarat Lions, with that formidable batting lineup of theirs, could power past SRH and setup another match against RCB in the final on Sunday.
Where to Watch Live
GL vs SRH is scheduled for an 8 p.m. IST (3.30 p.m. BST, 10.30 a.m. ET) start. Below are the TV and live streaming options.
Canada: TV: Sportsnet. Live Streaming: Watch Sportsnet.
Middle East and North Africa: TV: OSN Sports Cricket. Live Streaming: OSN Cricket Play.
South Africa and Sub Saharan Africa: TV: Supersport. Live Streaming: Supersport Live Video.
International (ROW): Online live stream: Cricketgateway.