19 Apr 2019
Rajasthan Royals have 6 games left in the Vivo Indian Premier League (IPL) this year. Currently, the Royals have two wins out of 8 games, and are in a position where they need to win every game to ensure qualification for the Playoffs. The situation isn’t too alien for most members of the team, who played last season. There came a juncture in the league, when the team had to win most of the remaining games to make it to the Playoffs – and qualify they did. Rajasthan Royals are known to win from anywhere, and the team needs something similar at this point. We take on Mumbai Indians at home, with the match being held at 4 PM. This is the first of our three remaining home games, and we will look to make the most of our home advantage to accumulate important points. The weather in Jaipur had some rain and thunderstorms around the last few days. Being an early evening game, we hope the showers keep a fair distance from the Sawai Mansingh Stadium throughout the game. Powerplay of Numbers”: We met Mumbai Indians recently, in Mumbai and have some great memories to look back at. After bowling decently, Jos Buttler set the tone for the chase at the Wankhede Stadium. His blistering knock of 89 runs included a 28-run over where Jos smashed Alzari Joseph all around the park, for 2 sixes and 4 fours. Our recent meetings against MI fall in our favour. We have won 4 of the last 5 encounters against them, and are fresh off a hat-trick. Last season, we saw some brilliance from Krishnappa Gowtham, a 11-ball 33, that took us beyond the finish line in the chase. The two teams have met on six occasions at Jaipur, and the Royals have won four of these matches. Dynamic Duels: Jofra Archer vs MI Batsmen: Archer seems to have taken a liking to bowling at the Mumbai Indians batsmen. He has two 3-fers against them. In the last game, he got some important wickets, including that of West Indian, Kieron Pollard. Archer’s pace could be a stern test for MI’s top order during the Powerplay, and when he returns to bowl at the death. The pacer has dismissed each of MI’s senior-most batsmen, Rohit Sharma and Kieron Pollard twice. Jos Buttler vs Hardik Pandya: Jos Buttler’s last two scores against MI read 89 and 94*. In these two innings, he has given Hardik Pandya some stick and how. Pandya has been conceding runs at a monstrous strike rate of 215 against Jos. Our opener has amassed 58 runs off 27 Hardik Pandya deliveries so far. It will be quite a sight at the SMS if Jos can keep up with these numbers. Sanju Samson vs Lasith Malinga: Sanju Samson has gotten starts in our last couple of games, but he will be keen to convert one into a big score soon. In the process, he may cross paths with Sri Lankan legend, Lasith Malinga. With the kind of talent Sanju possesses, he has struck at quite an envious strike rate of 175 against the quick. Watch out for those effortless flicks and pick-up shots to the in-dipping deliveries from Slinga. Rajasthan Royals have very little time on their hands to turn things around. It needs to begin soon, and this game could be the perfect one to tilt the tide in their favour. The Royals will look to get all three departments of the game working in sync to get back to winning ways. Halla Bol!