Both teams will be desperate to register their first win of the tournament after losing their opening matches. Rajasthan were absolutely taken to pieces by Hyderabad in their first outing of the 2018 IPL, Delhi on the other hand were quite-competitive in their recent defeat to Punjab.
It’s tough starting a tournament at an opposition’s venue, but not to the extent where you get brutally-beaten by nine wickets because you’re unfamiliar with the surroundings. The blatant-truth is that Rajasthan just didn’t play well on the night, whereas Hyderabad exposed them significantly with both bat & ball and were the better team on the night by a long stretch. The tale of the Royals batting woes probably stems from the fact that too many of their key batsmen hauled out to fielders in the deep, calculated risks that didn’t pay off on reflection. Little things like Ben Stokes batting at No. 4 instead of No. 5 and top order batsmen Rahul Tripathi playing in the middle order instead of in the top three could have been minor factors why Rajasthan’s innings didn’t go to plan, D’Arcy Short was a huge loss early as well after running himself out on 4. The one positive to take out of the match was Sanju Samson whose form hasn’t declined one-bit after last year’s IPL with the Daredevils, now he’s up against his old side tomorrow night and will be looking to impress in his new colours. Samson’s 49 runs was quickly-overshadowed by a 121-run partnership from Sunrisers batsmen Shikhar Dhawan and Kane Williamson who made light work of Rajasthan’s bowling attack. The Royals had to make do without star-seamer Jofra Archer who was easily their biggest recruit ahead of IPL 11, but it appears he’s still trying to overcome an injury picked up in the recent PSL. English all-rounder Ben Stokes was the most disappointing given the hype around him, scoring a sluggish 5 runs off 8 balls with the bat and leaking 21 runs in his two overs with the ball. After a loss like that, it’s hard to see Rajasthan persisting with the same XI despite being early days in the competition.
This match has Delhi Daredevils written all over it, they have some of the best-young talent in their side going around alongside a handful of world-class players leading the way. In all honesty, the Daredevils were a bit unlucky to come off second best in their opening game of IPL 11 with some proven performers falling-short of expectations just at the wrong time. Colin Munro’s early departure with the bat probably caused a bit of stress for the batsmen to follow, but skipper Gautam Gambhir did his best to regain control with a classy-fifty while wickets continued to fall around him. 20-year-old future star Rishabh Pant looked extremely proactive for his 13-ball 28 with South African all-rounder Chris Morris finishing the innings off strongly with an unbeaten 27. Despite a couple of failures in that mix, Delhi shouldn’t be pressing the panic button just yet given what the likes of Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant and Colin Munro are capable of when they find form out in the middle. The ultra-consistent Gambhir will be an asset to them in 2018, not to mention the inclusion of superstar Aussie all-rounder Glenn Maxwell who should feature in tomorrow night’s game after missing the season opener against his old IPL team Kings XI. Indian-duo Amit Mishra and Mohammed Shami were very expensive with the ball at Chandigarh and could be in danger of losing their spot in the team. Punjab took a liking to Black Caps quick Trent Boult who wasn’t as economical as usual, but still managed to pick up a wicket. Both Morris & Boult should maintain their spots in the side as the overseas specialists in the bowling department, they’re genuine wicket takers. If Rajasthan can’t make a couple early break throughs, Delhi will run over the top of them just like Hyderabad did.
Top 5 fantasy picks | Rajasthan Royals | 6th match | Jaipur
- Sanju Samson
- Ajinkya Rahane
- Jaydev Unadkat
- Rahul Tripathi
- Ben Stokes
Wildcard pick – Shreyas Gopal
Top 5 fantasy picks | Delhi Daredevils | 6th match | Jaipur
- Gautam Gambhir
- Glenn Maxwell
- Chris Morris
- Colin Munro
- Shreyas Iyer
Wildcard pick – Rahul Tewatia
While Jofra Archer’s estimated return remains a mystery to everyone, it’s unlikely he’ll take part in the Royals next couple of games with nothing confirmed as of yet. Jos Buttler could be under pressure to maintain his spot in the side with South African Heinrich Klaasen proving a like-for-like swap, but they may want to give the Englishman a good run at it before they decide to swing the axe. Australia’s Ben Laughlin was expensive in his two overs, but the Royals other two overseas bowlers (Archer & Chameera) are both currently unavailable for selection, Chameera has been ruled out for the first three weeks of the comp. All-rounder Stuart Binny could find himself back in the frame as well given the Royals lack of depth in the batting department.
With Glenn Maxwell available for selection, it’s almost a given he’ll walk straight into Delhi’s playing XI which will most-likely result in fellow-Aussie Dan Christian making way. At some point in the tournament, the Daredevils will have to decide who to play as the specialist overseas opening batsmen, Jason Roy or Colin Munro. Although Munro had a disappointing opening game, the Daredevils are expected to persist with the Kiwi given his damaging stroke play. Spinner Shahbaz Nadeem and all-rounder Gurkeerat Singh Mann are also possible inclusions for tomorrow’s match against Rajasthan, although Amit Mishra will be a hard man to drop given his history in the IPL.
Rajasthan Royals (possible) – 1. Ajinkya Rahane © 2. D’Arcy Short 3. Sanju Samson 4. Rahul Tripathi 5. Ben Stokes 6. Jos Buttler (wk) 7. Krishnappa Gowtham/Stuart Binny 8. Shreyas Gopal 9. Dhawal Kulkarni 10. Jaydev Unadkat 11. Ben Laughlin.
Delhi Daredevils (possible) – 1. Colin Munro 2. Gautam Gambhir © 3. Shreyas Iyer 4. Glenn Maxwell 5. Rishabh Pant (wk) 6. Vijay Shankar/Gurkeerat Singh Mann 7. Rahul Tewatia 8. Chris Morris 9. Amit Mishra 10. Trent Boult 11. Mohammed Shami.
Zak Varik is an Australian columnist/writer who specializes in the sports category cricket. With over four years of experience covering all sorts of cricket tournaments around the world, Zak has gained extensive knowledge in International cricket as well as domestic.
“I’ve loved watching cricket since I was about 7 years old, my childhood hero was none other than Andrew “Roy” Symonds who probably enhanced my love of the game through the years”.
Zak is now an established writer for FCN (Fantasy Cricket News) and has also previously represented other Blogs during his time as a writer.