The Rajasthan Royals and the Kings XI Punjab will take on each other for the second time in three days, this time at the home ground of the former. The Royals will look to extract revenge for the loss they incurred in Indore on Sunday.
The hosts are in a perilous position in the tournament right now, sitting dead last on the points table. It is vital for them to win against KXIP today to keep their hopes alive with respect to making it to the playoffs this year. To beat a strong side led by an able leader in Ravichandran Ashwin, it is imperative that the Royals field the right team at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur.
Ajinkya Rahane has altered his batting position according to the requirements and restrictions of the game in the tournament so far. Today, he might decide to open the batting with Jos Buttler, who has finally found some form after being promoted to the top of the order, scoring two consecutive fifties for RR.
Sanju Samson, who started this season well but has been out of touch in the last couple of games, is likely to retain his spot and will come in at one-down. Ben Stokes has been one of the most disappointing players of the season and hasn't performed to his potential in even one game so far. However, he will mostly get another go in the playing XI today, considering the impact that he can have on the game with his all-round abilities.
Rahul Tripathi and Jofra Archer will be entrusted with the responsibility of finishing the innings. The latter will also play a huge role with the ball, having taken 7 wickets in 3 games for the Royals so far. K Gowtham will be an important part of the playing XI and will be expected to contribute with the bat as well as the ball against Ashwin and his men.
Ish Sodhi might come into the side to give Rahane an additional spin-bowling option on the day. The Kiwi bowler was fairly impressive in the sole game he has played for the franchise this year. Dhawal Kulkarni is likely to come back into the mix to assist Jaydev Unadkat in the seam bowling department. Anureet Singh, who played his first match of the season against Punjab on Sunday, is likely to get another shot in the playing XI.
This is a crucial game in the Rajasthan Royals' IPL 2018 journey. Winning this game would give them a huge boost and take them away from the bottom of the table, while losing it would put a serious dent on their hopes of making a successful comeback in the tournament this year.
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