Rajasthan Royals (RR) would yet again bank on their key foreign players to help them win the IPL 2020 tournament.
Barring the first edition of IPL, Rajasthan Royals have most often struggled to create an impact in the tournament. While they reached the playoffs on a few occasions, the franchise has, more often than not, frustrated the fans with zero final appearances since 2009.
Before the 2020 Auction too, the Jaipur-based franchise took a few debatable decisions. While they released the experienced Ajinkya Rahane to Delhi Capitals, RR surprised many by letting go of the in-form all-rounder, Krishnappa Gowtham to Kings XI Punjab. Dhawal Kulkarni also switched alliances to Mumbai Indians during this phase. In return, the franchise procured Mayank Markhande, Ankit Rajpoot and Rahul Tewatia, all of whom are not certain starters.
Nevertheless, RR impressed with a clear strategy at the auction. They somewhat filled the gaps apart from hiring a few exciting youngsters. The U19 stars Yashasvi Jaiswal, Akash Singh, and Kartik Tyagi will all turn up in the pink outfit in IPL 2020. The management also added a few quality backups in the form of Miller and Curran.
While there definitely is a decent playing XI in place, RR’s plans would primarily revolve around their overseas stars and a couple of key Indian counterparts. So, in this article, we have identified the 3 most important players (1 each from batting, bowling, and all-rounder category), who can help Rajasthan Royals win the IPL 2020 trophy.
Bowling: Shreyas Gopal/Jofra Archer
Alternative(s): Jaydev Unadkat and Andrew Tye
Ideally, Jofra Archer’s name should first on the list of RR’s best pacer, but given his participation looking tentative as he is recovering from an injury, Shreyas Gopal seems to be the best bet who can help Rajasthan Royals dominate in the competition.
A traditional wrist-spinner, Shreyas Gopal owns several variations, which helps him in this format. He has had a really good IPL 2019, where he picked 20 wickets at an excellent economy of 7.22. This was after his a decent 2018 season, where he picked 11 wickets from 11 games.
However, considering a slightly below-par run in the recent domestic competitions in 2019, Shreyas might be under pressure to deliver next season. That aside, if he does well, he might give himself a chance to represent India soon.
All-rounder: Ben Stokes
Alternative(s): Riyan Parag and Tom Curran
English all-rounder, Ben Stokes needs no introduction at the moment. After a spectacular World Cup, the 28-year-old continued his excellent run to the Ashes, where he was the best all-rounder on display. Fittingly, ICC also honoured him as the Men’s Player of the Year 2019.
However, ever since Stokes became a Royal, things have not taken a desired route for him. In the last two editions combined, Stokes scored 319 runs, which is well short of his debut season record of 396 runs for Rising Pune Supergiant. With the ball too, he could take only 14 wickets combined in the last two seasons, when in fact his debut season yielded 12 wickets alone.
Nevertheless, Stokes’ fabulous 2019 makes him a key member of RR’s plans in 2020. In the middle-order, Stokes’ impact is unparalleled, while with the ball, he can be the crucial partnership-breaker. Moreover, Rajasthan exudes naivety, and here is where Stokes will have a lot to offer with his experience.
Batsman: Jos Buttler
Alternative(s): Steve Smith and Sanju Samson
Having scored 548 and 311 runs in 2018 and 2019 respectively, Rajasthan would be keen to have Jos Buttler in a similar form in 2020. Although he has been slightly inconsistent in recent times with England, once he gets going, Buttler is sure to win many matches on the trot.
RR’s batting would depend a lot on Buttler’s form, who usually sets the tone of the innings with his aggressive batting in the powerplay. Considering Steve Smith can be shaky in the T20 format, it is important that Buttler steps up very often being the most important batsman of the squad.
Moreover, Buttler would be having a completely new partner this year in the form of talented, Yashasvi Jaiswal or experienced, Robin Uthappa– Both of whom bring unique capabilities to the table, and would ease the burden off Buttler’s shoulders.
So, these are the three players who are going to play a crucial role in RR’s second IPL triumph. Apart from these, RR would need Steve Smith, Sanju Samson, Jaydev Unadkat, Riyan Parag to name a few key players to also step up.
Thanks for reading! Who among the above mentioned players do you think can help Rajasthan Royals (RR) win the IPL 2020? Please let us know in the comments section.
Nesara is an Author at AK4Tsay1 Cricalytics. He is an Engineer by profession. Watching Cricket, Football & Movies is one of his topmost priorities within the day.