Given the sheer number of teams still in contention to finish among the top four, Warner believes Capitals may have to win all their remaining games to qualify.
“Moving forward from where we are, we’ve obviously got to win every game to make it to the finals,” Warner said in an official Delhi Capitals release. “There’s strong competition, two teams we have got to come up against – Punjab Kings and Sunrisers Hyderabad, who are pretty much similar points to us.
“We could get that upper hand if we beat Sunrisers. We then go into the top four, but obviously, we need RCB [Royal Challengers Bangalore, who face Chennai Super Kings on Wednesday night] to start losing as well. It’s quite a congested table, but exciting for the rest of the tournament.”
Warner is Capitals’ highest run-getter this season, with 264 runs at an average of 44.00 and a strike rate of 156.21. His opening partner Prithvi Shaw is just behind him, with 259 runs at 28.77 and 159.87. Both fell for single-digit scores in Capitals’ last match, a narrow defeat to Lucknow Super Giants.
“We’ve got off to a good start,” Warner said of his partnership with Shaw. “In the last match, we’ve fallen cheaply, both of us, and that can happen in this game because we have to play that high-level brand of cricket in the power play.”
He emphasised, however, that he, Shaw and No. 3 Mitchell Marsh would need to make big scores and win games for Capitals.
“I think the most important thing is myself or him [Shaw] or Mitch scoring an 80 or 90 or even a hundred if we can, to post good totals or chase down big totals, and that’s the key,” Warner said. “I think that’s the focus for every other team. The teams who are doing well are scoring big runs at the top of the order. And, two players are actually scoring big in the games, they are the ones that you really need to shine to win these games.”
Thursday’s match will be Warner’s first against Sunrisers since leaving the franchise at the end of a difficult 2021 season. Warner remains Sunrisers’ highest run-getter in the IPL, with 4014 runs in 95 matches at 49.55 and 142.59, with two hundreds and a whopping 40 fifties.
“My thoughts are like every other game,” Warner said, “just keep going through your processes till you have to do it, training and just get ready for the game.”