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IPL Team Analysis: Rajasthan Royals

Rajasthan Royals has always remained one of those teams who has performed above expectations. Can they hit out of the park again this time?

Last updated: 19.03.2019
Rajasthan Royals team celebrating

Just a week from the commencement of the Indian Premier League, all teams are looking to get their combinations right and put tactics and strategies in place. Today, we will attempt to break down the make up of the teams and analyse their combinations. Let’s start with the champions of the first edition of the Indian Premier League, Rajasthan Royals.

Rajasthan has been fairly consistent as a team in the IPL, finishing 4th last year and qualifying for the playoffs. They had a poor start to the tournament but turned things around in the second half after Jos Buttler was promoted as an opener. The team, under the leadership of Ajinkya Rahane, will look to improve it’s record this season.

Top order: Rajasthan has potentially 6 players for the opening spot, Ajinkya Rahane, Jos Buttler, Liam Livingstone, Aryaman Birla, Manan Vohra and Rahul Tripathi. They will start with the opening combination of Buttler and Rahane, same as last year. Rajasthan’s showing will depend a lot on Jos Buttler, who amassed 548 runs last season. Rahane’s role in the middle will be to hold one end up and anchor the innings, allowing players around him to score freely. With Buttler leaving the tournament midway for international duties, one of Tripathi Vohra and Birla will be accommodated at the top. The inclusion of Steve Smith this season is a big boost to the Rajasthan batting line up. He will be batting at the number 3 position, and help anchor the innings.

Middle order: Rajasthan's middle order has great firepower and high quality batsmanship with Sanju Samson, Ben Stokes, Ashton Turner and Rahul Tripathy. Samson and Tripathy are most likely to start as middle order batsmen and it will be between Stokes and Turner to fill one spot. Turner's match winning performance against India might just tip in his favour, but Stokes’s all-around ability is just as hard to get past.

Lower order: Rajasthan is decent utility players like Mahipal Lomror, Krishnappa Gowtham, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal and Stuart Binny. Krishnappa Gowtham had an impressive showing last season with both bat and ball, and he’d be one of the first names on the team sheet. Jofra Archer brings in the x-factor for Rajasthan with his reliable death bowling, power hitting and deft fielding. Shreyas Gopal is a leg spinner and handy bat down the order. He adds a bit of depth to the lineup, same as Stuart Binny. 

Bowlers: Dhawal Kulkarni, Jaydev Unadkat, Ish Sodhi, Varun Aaron and Oshane Thomas form Rajasthan’s bowling line up. Unadkat is one of the leading domestic Indian pacers and a lot will depend on his competency. Oshane Thomas has been very impressive in his young career so far, with his ability to pick up wickets and generate pace. It will be hard for him to find a place in the eleven since only 4 overseas players can play. The other spot will most likely be taken by Dhawal Kulkarni, who brings in a lot of experience to the table.

Playing XI :

1.    Jos Buttler(overseas)

2.    Ajinkya Rahane

3.    Steven Smith(overseas)

4.    Sanju Samson

5.    Rahul Tripathi

6.    Ben Stokes/Ashton Turner(overseas)

7.    Krishnappa Gowtham

8.    Jofra Archer(overseas)

9.    Shreyas Gopal

10.    Dhawal Kulkarni

11.    Jaydev Unadkat

Rajasthan will play their first match against Kings XI Punjab at their home ground, Sawai Man Singh Stadium, and look to get a strong start to the season.

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