Mumbai: Rajasthan Royals (RR) and Punjab Kings (PBKS) are all set to toe-to-toe in the fourth match of the Indian Premier League (IPL) at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Monday (April 12). Both sides have been quite scratchy in recent years and will be determined to make a winning start.
Rajasthan started off well last season but they were unable to keep their rhythm ultimately going out of the title race. Sanju Samson, who has been given the responsibility of leading the side this year, was their highest scorer with 375 runs in 14 matches.
Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes were also quite good for them. But it’s the middle order which has been a concern for them. This season though they spread cash in roping the likes of Shivam Dube and Liam Livingstone to solve that problem while the most expensive player in the history of IPL Chris Morris will also be seen in the Pink and Blue colours.
However, the unavailability of Jofra Archer will be a big blow for Rajasthan who was the undeniable talisman of their bowling last season. Rahul Tewatia too joined English seamer in the list. However, the new boy Mustafizur Rahman might be an option for that.
Speaking of the revamped Punjab Kings side, last season their ability to finish games was put into question. They haven’t been in the playoffs since their memorable 2014 season. Skipper KL Rahul will be their main with willow up at the top with Mayank Agarwal, Chris Gayle and Nicolas Pooran coming down the order.
Punjab bought Dawid Malan who will be expected to ease the workload of Rahul as a possible no.4. Jhye Richardson will be a vital cog for them with the leather with supports from Mohammed Shami and Riley Meredith. However, it all comes down to Rahul’s leadership about how he uses them.