Sunrisers Hyderabad v Mumbai Indians betting preview: Reigning IPL champions are there for the taking
Sunrisers Hyderabad emphatically proved that cheats dont prosper in their opening match against Rajasthan Royals. Their former skipper, David Warner, was deposed as leader for his role in the Australia ball-tampering scandal and it was a case of Warner who? following the nine-wicket win.
There had been legitimate concerns that Sunrisers could struggle for brawn and brains in the absence of Warner. These were legitimate.
Warner was the top runscorer in the tournament last season and, in T20 cricket at least, was considered a shrewd skip. All within the rules, of course.
Shikhar Dhawan, the India opener, stepped up. Perhaps he revelled in his role as top dog now Warner has been jettisoned. He responded with a superb and unbeaten 78 from 58 balls. And he landed us top-bat honours into the bargain.
We probably wont go in again on Dhawan to top score against Mumbai Indians in Thursdays contest. That is because we are sweet on Sunrisers to make it two wins from two and a strong Dhawan show would undoubtedly assist.
Sunrisers are favourites at 10-11 (Betfred, Ladbrokes, Skybet, Coral) with the Indians available at even money with Bet365, Betfair Sportsbook and William Hill.
It is unusual for us to side with the jolly in a T20 because the format is so unpredictable but we have more than a sneaking feeling that champions Mumbai could struggle.
Their confidence must be terribly low after they somehow were the victims of an extraordinary Chennai Super Kings heist in the tournament opener. They had the game in their pocket until Dwayne Bravos late assault which was so brutal it would have not looked out of place in a cage fight.
They have also lost the services of Aussie quick Pat Cummins. Cummins, a terrific performer with the ball, old and new, can also strike a long ball so his absence will be keenly felt. Their bowling also lacks a quality international spinner.
Against Sunrisers, probably the best bowling attack in the tournament, their weaknesses could be exposed. Rashid Khan is the best spinner in the world while Shakib-al-Hasan isnt too shabby, either.
By the way, dont forget to bet Rashid for man of the match at a truly huge 14/1 with Unibet. He should be half that.