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sunrisers hyderabad
Defending champions Sunrisers Hyderabad begin their IPL 2017 campaign against Royal Challengers Bangalore Getty

Royal Challengers Bangalore will take on Sunrisers Hyderabad in the opening match of the 10th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) on Wednesday (5 April) at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in the southern Indian city of Hyderabad.

Where to watch live

Match starts at 3.30pm BST. Live coverage of the game is available on Sky Sports 2 and 2 HD in the UK. The matches will available online on skysports.com and mobile users can view it on Sky GO.

Overview

An injury-hit Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) side will have their task cut out when they take on defending champions Sunrisers Hyderabad in the opening game.

Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers have been ruled out of the match with shoulder and back injury, respectively. The former is expected to miss more than one game, while the latter could return for the second game against the Delhi Daredevils on 8 April.

KL Rahul will be out for the entire tournament with an injury, while young batting sensation Sarfaraz Khan is also facing a similar prospect after picking up an injury during a warm-up game. The quartet's absence severely depletes the RCB's batting line-up, putting the onus on Chris Gayle and Shane Watson to lead the attack. Mandeep Singh and Travis Head are likely to provide backup until Kohli and De Villiers return.

IPL 2016
Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers will miss RCB's opening game of the 2017 IPL season Getty

The 2016 finalists have an all-new pace attack with Englishman Tymal Mills and Rajasthan-based Aniketh Choudhary leading the line-up. The former is said to be a specialist in the shortest format of the game, while the latter is a recent find having impressed while training with the India team ahead of their recently-concluded Test Series against Australia.

The reigning champions Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) have not made too many changes since last season and have most of their key players available for the opening clash at their home ground.

David Warner will lead the side and the explosive batsman will be joined by Shikhar Dhawan, Yuvraj Singh and Moises Henriques in the batting department. In the bowling department they are likely to be led by the experienced Ashish Nehra, while they also have last season's highest wicket-taker Bhuvaneshwar Kumar.

Chris Jordan will come up against his former side on Wednesday and is likely to make the playing XI due to the absence of Bangladesh pace bowler Mustafizur Rahman, who is with his national team at the moment.

SRH lead the overall head-to-head count against RCB 5-4, but are a dominant 3-1 when it comes to matches played at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium. Another stat that would trouble the visiting team is the form of Warner, when he plays the Royal Challengers. The Australian opener has scored seven half-centuries in his last seven matches against RCB.

Prediction

Sunrisers Hyderabad to win

Betting odds (betfair)

  • SRH to win: 8/11
  • RCB to win: 11/10

Team news

Royal Challengers Bangalore

Possible XI: Chris Gayle, Mandeep Singh, Shane Watson (C), Kedar Jadhav (wk), Sachin Baby, Stuart Binny, Pawan Negi, Yuzvendra Chahal, Tymal Mills, Aniket Choudhary, Travis Head.

Sunrisers Hyderabad

Possible XI: Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Deepak Hooda, Naman Ojha (WK), Shikhar Dhawan, David Warner (C), Moises Henriques, Kane Williamson, Yuvraj Singh, Ashish Nehra, Chris Jordan.