Sports Monks

Four players Sunrisers Hyderabad should sign in the IPL auction

Sunrisers Hyderabad will welcome their captain David Warner ahead of the upcoming edition of the IPL after he was banned from the 2018 IPL because of his involvement in the ball-tampering saga. Ahead of the 2019 IPL auction, SRH traded Shikhar Dhawan to Delhi Daredevils and got three players, Vijay Shankar, Shahbaz Nadeem and Abhishek Sharma in return.

They also released eight players ahead of the auction and will look to address their concerns when they sit to pick their team on December 18 in Jaipur.

Let us take a look at four players SRH should target in the 2019 IPL auction.

Retained Players

Basil Thampi, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Deepak Hooda, Manish Pandey, Natarajan, Ricky Bhui, Sandeep Sharma, Shreevats Goswami, Siddarth Kaul, Syed Khaleel Ahmed, Yusuf Pathan, Billy Stanlake, David Warner, Kane Williamson, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, and Shakib Al-Hasan.

Released players

Sachin Baby, Tanmay Agarwal, Wriddhiman Saha, Chris Jordan, Carlos Brathwaite, Alex Hales, Bipul Sharma, Syed Mehdi Hasan.

Traded: Shikhar Dhawan for Vijay Shankar, Shahbaz Nadeem, and Abhishek Sharma.

Available Slots

5; Indian 3, Overseas 2

Manan Vohra

Going into the 2019 IPL, Sunrisers Hyderabad will receive a big boost by the arrival of their former captain David Warner, who was banned from taking part in the last year’s tournament. In his absence, Kane Williamson not only took over the captaincy reigns from the Aussie opener but also replaced him at the top of the order and went on to win the Orange Cap. So, it is likely that both Warner and Williamson will open the batting for the Orange Army in the 2019 IPL, especially after the exit of Shikhar Dhawan, who was traded off to Delhi Daredevils.

Now that Dhawan has left the franchise, Sunrisers don’t have a reserve opener in their squad apart from Shreevats Goswami. If either Warner or Williamson had to leave the tournament mid-way, they could be in trouble. In that case, someone like Manan Vohra can be a handy option for the Sunrisers as he has a proven track record in the IPL. In spite of not being used properly by RCB, Vohra was released by the franchise ahead of the 2019 auction and could be a valuable addition for SRH if they go on to pick him.

Manoj Tiwary

Over the last few seasons, Sunrisers have been riding on the superhuman efforts of their top-order. It used to be David Warner and Shikhar Dhawan in the past and in the last season, it was Kane Williamson. But, just like how their top-order was consistent in scoring runs, their middle-order has been consistently inconsistent when it comes to getting the job done for their team. Even the addition of Manish Pandey didn’t help their cause and Sunrisers will look to strengthen their middle-order in the upcoming option.

Manoj Tiwary is one name who can be a useful addition to the SR middle-order. A veteran of 98 matches, Tiwary has scored 1685 runs at an average of 29 over the last 11 years. He is also a consistent run scorer in the domestic white-ball competitions and could a good job for SRH if they go ahead and pick him in the auction.

Naman Ojha

Ahead of the 2019 IPL auction, Sunrisers Hyderabad released Wriddhiman Saha from their squad and as it stands, they are left with only Shreevats Goswami in their squad. So, in all likelihood, the franchise will look to address their wicketkeeping area in the auction.

There are quite a few options in the auction pool and the Sunrisers might be tempted to go back to Saha and get him for a lower price. If he doesn’t do that, Naman Ojha is one player who fits the bill perfectly. The veteran wicketkeeper from Madhya Pradesh was released by Delhi Daredevils after the 2018 season and could be a good pick for SRH as he is a reliable wicketkeeper and can contribute with the bat whenever needed.

Zahir Khan

One of the main reasons for SRH’s success of late is the presence of Afghanistan leg-spinner Rashid Khan. Rashid, without a doubt, is the best T20 leg-spinner in the world and Sunrisers’ chances in the 2019 IPL depends on how well Rashid bowls for them in the tournament.

However, there are chances that he might not play the whole tournament keeping the 2019 World Cup in mind as he is Afghanistan’s trump card in the tournament and the ACB might not want their premier player to burn out before such an important tournament. In that case, SRH will be looking to get a backup spinner and one name they go after is Rashid’s Afghanistan teammate Zahir Khan.

Zahir was bought by Rajasthan Royals and was released by the franchise after the 2018 season. He will be one of the most sought-after players in the 2019 auction as the Chinaman has done well in the T20 leagues he is playing around the world and can bamboozle the batsmen with his bowling. Unlike Kuldeep Yadav, who relies a lot on the air the ball gets, Zahir is quick and is capable of spinning the ball both ways, giving the batsmen lesser time to pick him.

He can be a good backup to Rashid and is likely to go for a huge amount in the IPL auction.

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