IPL 2020: Best Rajasthan Royals XI for the upcoming season
After winning the inaugural edition of the IPL in 2008, Rajasthan Royals have failed to scale similar heights over the last 11 years. They haven't even managed to reach the final of the tournament since their victorious campaign in 2008. The team management will be hoping that their trophy drought comes to an end during the upcoming season.
They brought in some exciting players like Ankit Rajpoot, Mayank Markhande and Rahul Tewatia during the trade window to strengthen their bowling attack. The team's long-standing player and former skipper Ajinkya Rahane was traded to Delhi Capitals.
They acquired the services of the experienced campaigner Robin Uthappa during the auction to fill the void left by the departure of Rahane.
Squad for IPL 2020: Steve Smith (c), Mahipal Lomror, Manan Vohra, Riyan Parag, Robin Uthappa, David Miller, Ankit Rajpoot, Mayank Markande, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Varun Aaron, Jaydev Unadkat, Kartik Tyagi, Akash Singh, Oshane Thomas, Andrew Tye, Ben Stokes, Rahul Tewatia, Shashank Singh, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Anirudha Joshi, Tom Curran, Jos Buttler, Sanju Samson, Anuj Rawat
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During the IPL 2020 Auction, RR's top picks were Andrew Tye, Robin Uthappa and David Miller. Their squad looks well-balanced in all departments, so we can expect the team to perform well - and maybe even reach the playoff stages.
Now, let us take a look at the best possible combination for the RR team during the upcoming IPL season.
Openers: Jos Buttler and Manan Vohra
Swashbuckling English wicketkeeper Jos Buttler will continue to open the innings for the Rajasthan Royals in the upcoming season. He has put up some stellar performances as an opener in the last few years and made the position his own.
Former KXIP opener Manan Vohra should accompany him at the top order.
Vohra is one of the most underrated openers in the IPL. He has never got consistent game time, despite playing some useful innings for KXIP as an opening batsman. Considering his past exploits as an opener, the Rajasthan Royals management might give him the opportunity to shine in that role.
Sanju Samson and Robin Uthappa are the backup openers available in the squad.
Middle order: Sanju Samson (wk), Steve Smith (c), Robin Uthappa, Ben Stokes, Riyan Parag
Sanju Samson has been one of the most consistent performers for the Rajasthan franchise over the last decade. He has scored two centuries for the Royals, and is expected to walk in at the number 3 position and play an attacking brand of cricket.
Skipper Steve Smith and veteran Robin Uthappa will follow Samson in the batting order. The experienced duo will anchor the middle order and allow the attacking players to play freely around them.
Star all-rounder Ben Stokes will share the finishing duties along with youngster Riyan Parag. These two players will also be the team's 5th and 6th bowling options respectively.
Lower order: Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Jaydev Unadkat, Ankit Rajpoot
Jofra Archer will spearhead the Rajasthan Royals bowling attack during the upcoming season. Jaydev Unadkat and Ankit Rajpoot will join Archer in the pace department.
Rajpoot has the ability to swing the new ball at a decent pace, so the team management will bank on him to pick up early wickets in the powerplay overs. Unadkat and Archer will primarily handle the responsibility of bowling in the death overs.
Shreyas Gopal and Riyaan Parag will manage the spin department in this XI. However, the fate of the team's bowling department will rely heavily on Archer's performances.
Best XI: Jos Buttler, Manan Vohra, Sanju Samson (wk), Steve Smith (c), Robin Uthappa, Ben Stokes, Riyan Parag, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Jaydev Unadkat, Ankit RajpootModified 15 Jan 2020, 17:41 IST