IPL 9: Gujarat Lions seek protection from Sunrisers' Yuvraj Singh
Hyderabad: Dashing all-rounder Yuvraj Singh, who has missed Sunrisers Hyderabad’s matches so far due to an injury suffered during India’s ICC World T20 campaign, is set to feature in his maiden Indian Premier League-9 match against Gujarat Lions at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium here today.
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Yuvraj Singh during a practice session at Mohali in March. PIC/AFP
Yuvraj was ruled out before the World T20 semi-final against West Indies in March after suffering an ankle injury during India’s six-wicket win over Australia in Mohali.
“I am hoping to play tomorrow’s (Friday) game in Hyderabad,” Yuvraj told NDTV yesterday when asked if he is fit to take the field. “As long as I am playing, I want to play all three formats whenever I get the opportunity,” he added.
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Sunrisers coach Tom Moody confirmed the southpaw will play today. “He (Yuvraj) is available. When we finalise our XI, he is very much in our thoughts,” Moody said in the pre-match press conference. Sunrisers played their last match on April 30. They defeated Royal Challengers Bangalore by 15 runs.
“We won a couple, we lost a couple. We are coming out and putting up good performances. It’s going to be challenging for the guys but the team is in a good frame of mind. The guys had rest (during) last couple of days and everyone is fresh and ready to go,” Sunrisers skipper David Warner told reporters on the eve of the game. Warner said the much-needed five-day break helped the players to regroup. “For us, it’s about making sure that mentally we are ok, we are not exhausting ourselves. The guys had a little bit of training session yesterday. The guys bonded very well at resorts, some went for go-karting,” he added.
Stating that Gujarat Lions are a strong side, Warner said Sunrisers need to make early inroads to contain the explosive batting line-up of the visitors.
First six overs are crucial: Warner
“We have to contain them early. Whether we bat or ball first, it’s all about first six overs and early wickets. For us as a batting unit, it is important not to lose too many wickets and for our bowlers it is important to get as many wickets as they can,” he said.
The Australian said their aim is to keep on winning games without thinking about others. “For us, it’s about winning. If we keep winning, we are going to make it to the finals. We don’t have to worry about what other teams do,” he said.
Warner said as a captain, he is open minded and always accessible to his teammates. “My life becomes easy when the guys are doing their job. If I feel something is not in place, I talk to the players. My doors are always open to the players,” he said.