Warner sees big home-advantage in Uppal Stadium

Hyderabad: There is no bigger advantage like playing at ‘home’ and that’s precisely the reason why Sunrisers captain David Warner wants his team to turn the Rajiv Gandhi Stadium in Uppal into a virtual ‘fortress’.

“These (Hyderabad) are different conditions. The thing here is that we are trying to turn this ground into our fortress. Every team tries to win as many games at home as they can,” said Warner, who enthralled one and all with his 59-ball-126 against Kolkata Knight Riders.

“Whether you win or lose the toss, you have to have a positive mindset and tell the guys to play freely. I expect my guys to go out there and give their 100 percent,” said Warner.

The defending champions are in firm contention to seal a berth for the play-offs.

“We never take anything for granted. You don’t be complacent. It’s all about momentum in this game. You got to keep winning. Keep playing every game to win as we always do and try to get up in the position. We know the finals going to be played here.

“The teams are going to be thinking of how they are going to beat us at our home venue if we manage to make the final. That’s an added bonus for us. So we try to make our way up to the top two and give ourselves the added bonus of making it to the final. We just got to wait and see how it pans out,” he said.

On his own knock, Warner said: “It’s always pleasing to go out there and score runs. It’s also great that I went out there and had a clear game plan. Sometimes against quality bowling opposition where there is a lot of pace, it’s easy.”

On Sunrisers batting strategy, Warner’s advice to his team’s batsmen is to commit to their shots. They did exactly that during the KKR match.

“For us as a batting unit, we already said to the guys to commit to your shots. Because, we have seen that while they were bowling they (KKR) were getting a lot of wickets because of cross-batted shots. I gave a chance too early on.” Warner appreciated his teammates Shikhar Dhawan and Kane Williamson for playing the supporting role to perfection.

“Our game plan was to keep going with one guy batting all way through. I have to complement the way Shikhar played. I played that role in the last game and he played a good innings here. He got me on strike often and hit the balls which needed to be hit. Obviously Kane came in and played a fantastic knock at the end. He is in good form and is really finishing off very well,” he said.