I was really looking forward to analysing the Rajasthan Royals team – they have a reputation of being the moneyball team of IPL. Here is my analysis of this team.
- Brad Hodge, Ajinkya Rahane, Unmukt Chand and Karun Nair are the pureplay batsmen in the team.
- Tim Southee, Dhawal Kulkarni, Kane Richardson, Deepak Hooda, Vikramjeet Malik, Ankit Sharma, A Mishra (not the Indian leggie) and Pravin Tambe are the bowlers.
- Sanju Samson, Ankush Bains and Dishant Yagnik are the wicket-keeper batsmen
- Shane Watson, Stuart Binny, Steven Smith, Rajat Bhatia, Abhishek Nayar, Iqbal Abdullah, Kevon Cooper, Rahul Tewatia, James Faulkner and Ben Cutting are the all rounders.
At first glance, it is obvious that the team has gone in for lots of all-rounders than specialists. This seems to be different from the approach taken by the other teams.
The international players in the team are a formidable bunch – Watson, Steve Smith, Kevon Cooper, James Faulkner, Tim Southee, Brad Hodge, etc. Picking 4 from this bunch is going to be a tough ask for the team – especially given that the Indian contingent does not look very strong. Apart from Rahane and Stuart Binny to a lesser extent, there is no one else who you would think is a match winner.
The batting will revolve around Watson, Rahane, Smith and Hodge – with good contributions expected from exciting youngsters like Unmukt Chand, Sanju Samson, etc. Even then, this batting line up will not strike fear in the hearts of opposition. The bowling looks even weaker – there is no genuine quick or a genuine wicket taking spinner.
This team has to bond really well and has to play out of their skin in order to win matches. They have to rely on batting, bowling and fielding extremely well every single day in order to win. And if they do win a lot of games, Rajasthan’s reputation of being the surprise package of IPL will be intact.