IPL 2018, KKR vs SRH Qualifier 2: Cloud of self-doubt looms over Sunrisers Hyderabad

Shikhar Dhawan resorted to an inspirational quote from the ‘Iron Lady’ to seek motivation. Ahead of the IPL Qualifier 2 at Eden Gardens on Friday, the Sunrisers Hyderabad opener posted a tweet, saying: “down but NOT OUT.com’on @SunRisers, lets do this for our fans #orangearmy”. The picture that accompanied the tweet had a quote from the late Margaret Thatcher: “You may have to fight a battle more than once to win it”.

Four losses on the spin have suddenly made Sunrisers jittery. There’s a school thought that they peaked a little too early as a team. Kane Williamson and company had six wins on the bounce at one stage, which helped them secure top-of-the-table finish. The opportunity to have a second bite at the cherry has kept Sunrisers in the contest, despite a sharp dip in form of late.

Uncertainties seemed to have trickled down to the skipper as well. Williamson had been outstanding with his captaincy throughout the group phase. Against Chennai Super Kings in the Qualifier 1, however, he erred at the death. Bringing on Carlos Brathwaite in the 18th over — Sandeep Sharma still had an over in the bag — against a well-set Faf du Plessis proved calamitous. Siddarth Kaul bowling to Shardul Thakur in the 19th, with the third man and fine leg up, and long-on and long-off back defied logic. The mistakes cost Sunrisers a direct route to the final.

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