IPL 2020: Why Shreyas Gopal is a key player for Rajasthan Royals
- Shreyas Gopal was an important part of Rajasthan's bowling line-up last season.
- Here's why he made the difference for the Royals by both restricting runs and taking wickets.
Shreyas Gopal was an important part of the Rajasthan Royals' bowling line-up last season. He was the leading wicket-taker for the Royals and fourth overall, picking up 20 wickets in 14 matches at an economy of 7.22. This also included a hat-trick in a rain-hit fixture against the Royal Challengers Bangalore at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium.
Here's why Gopal would once again be a key player in RR's campaign this season:
Getting the wickets of key players
Gopal dismissed key batsmen of the opposition in almost every match that he played last season. His list of wickets included big-name players like Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers, Rohit Sharma, Quinton de Kock, Shikhar Dhawan and Kane Williamson. He managed to dismiss Kohli and ABD both times RR played RCB last season.
This ability to get big players out makes Gopal an important feature in the Royals' bowling line-up. Gopal would be trusted with the responsibility of picking up important wickets by his captain.
Bowling in the powerplay
Gopal picked up 5 wickets at a reasonable economy of 8.0 in the powerplay last season. He also managed to keep the batsman quiet in the powerplay with an excellent dot ball percentage of 53.33.
Gopal's ability to keep the scoring in check even in the powerplays would be crucial in putting pressure on the batsman and will help the bowlers at the other end to pick up wickets.
Providing control in the middle overs
Spinners play an important part in proving control and picking up wickets through the middle overs, Gopal played this role for the Rajasthan Royals last season, picking up 11 wickets at an economy of just 7.13. He also had an outstanding balls per boundary ratio of 8.22.
Gopal's ability to provide control and pick up wickets in the middle overs would be very important for the Royals to apply pressure on the batsmen and help in restricting the opposition to a low total.
Gopal will need to repeat if not better his performance in the last season if the Rajasthan Royals are to challenge for the title.Published 19 Mar 2020, 16:00 IST