IPL 2021: Kane Williamson’s absence in Saturday’s game against Mumbai Indians was not the only reason that fumed SRH fans. The decision to not include Thangarasu Natarajan in the playing also baffled a host of fans and followers of the 2016 champions.
David Warner-led Sunrisers made four changes to playing XI and fielded Khaleel Ahmed in place of Natarajan. However, the changes didn’t make any big difference to the end result as Sunrisers Hyderabad lost the match by 13 runs. It was their third consecutive defeat this season. They have not lost the first three matches on trot in the history of the IPL.
However, the thing that left many fans confused is the statement given by their Director of Cricket Tom Moody and team mentor and former India international VVS Laxman.
The statement given by both the former cricketers are contrasting. While one has revealed that T Natarajan was excluded from the Playing XI due to injury, another said that that the pacer wasn’t dropped from the team at all and the management is managing Natarajan’s workload and has been rested for the match against MI.
T Natarajan Had A Knee Niggle And Was Ruled Out: VVS Laxman
VVS Laxman also said that the franchise’s medical team will soon assess and decide on the extent of the injury.
“Unfortunately, Natarajan had a niggle in his left knee and that’s why he was ruled out and that’s why we went with Khaleel Ahmed who is also a left-arm seamer…We are going to assess the condition of Natarajan and I am sure the medical staff of the Sunrisers will take the right decision which will be beneficial for him and the franchise.”
‘T Natarajan Rested, Not Dropped’ – SRH Director Tom Moody Clarify
Mood confirmed that Natarajan aka The Yorker Specialist has been rested as SRH are keen on managing the pacer’s workload in the cash-rich league.
“Natarajan has not been dropped. He has been rested. We know that he has had a lot of cricket over the last six months [including for India]. We need to take care of him as there is a long IPL season ahead. If he was 100 percent fit and fresh, he would have definitely played,” said Moody while speaking to the broadcasters during Mumbai Indians’ innings.
As long as match is concerned, Sunrisers Hyderabad were bowled out for 137 while chasing a low target of 151. Mumbai Indians have moved to the top of the points table after 2 victories in 3 matches. They will next face Delhi Capitals on April 20.