As the commencement date of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 is coming closer, the experts of the fascinating game have started releasing their favourite list of players, teams and playing XI for various sides.
Following the pattern, former Indian opener Aakash Chopra has picked his ideal playing XI for the Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH). Chopra began the proceedings by naming openers in the form of David Warner and Jonny Bairstow.
Warner is the highest run-scorer in IPL history among overseas players. The ‘pocket dynamite’ has accumulated 4706 runs in 126 matches including 44 half-centuries and four hundreds.
Bairstow, on the other hand, has played only one season, scoring 445 runs in 10 games with two fifties and one century.
“I will start with the captain David Warner. He is an IPL legend, and his stats are even better than Indian batsmen. Last year he said before the tournament that he would score 500 runs, and he scored more than that. With him, I have Jonny Bairstow, which makes it a left-right combination. The last time two batsmen scored a century in the same IPL match, they were the ones,” said Chopra.
The Delhi lad went with Manish Pandey and Vijay Shankar as the No.3 and No.4 batsmen. He further picked Virat Singh as his fifth specialist batter. Chopra mainly hailed youngster Virat, stating that the latter hits plenty of boundaries.
Chopra picked Nabi and Rashid as finishers
The cricketer-turned-commentator selected Afghanistan duo, Mohammad Nabi and Rashid Khan, as his No. 6 and No. 7 players. Chopra opined that both Nabi and Rashid could play the role of finishers in the team.
“Considering the conditions in UAE, we will have to go with Mohammad Nabi over Mitchell Marsh. He can do the finisher’s role considering his form in the CPL. Along with him, we will have Rashid Khan. He can play big shots but is he a No.7 batsman, that is the only problem that I see with this team,” articulated Chopra.
The former India opener picked Shahbaz Nadeem as a specialist spinner. When it comes to seamers, Chopra went with Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Khaleel Ahmed.
Bhuvi is the fourth-highest wicket-taker among Indian bowlers. He has picked up 133 wickets in 117 IPL matches.
“We will have Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who has also captained the team. He is an experienced bowler, and hopefully, he is fine coming back from injury. At No.10, I have kept Khaleel Ahmed, who will give the left-arm option. He can use this as a platform to come back to the Indian team,” Chopra added further.
The 42-year-old cricket analyst also believes that Sunrisers could rotate between Siddarth Kaul and Sandeep Sharma.
“Last but not least, you could go with Siddarth Kaul or Sandeep Sharma. Both of them give almost identical performances so that you can rotate them,” concluded Chopra.
Here is Aakash Chopra’s ideal Sunrisers Hyderabad playing XI:
David Warner (c), Jonny Bairstow (wk), Manish Pandey, Vijay Shankar, Virat Singh, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Shahbaz Nadeem, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Khaleel Ahmed, Siddarth Kaul/Sandeep Sharma.