The Chennai Super Kings, who beat the current winners of the Mumbai Indians in their first match of the 13th season of the Indian Premier League, will face the Rajasthan Royals in their second match today. CSK, led by Mahendra Singh Dhoni, will also struggle to win the second leg. This is Steve Smith's first match for the Royals this season, and they would like to start by winning as well.
Looking at Chennai vs. Mumbai, the Royals management would surely want something more from their players, as CSK has dominated every IPL season so far, and this time they got off to a great start too.
Ambati Raoudou (71) and Faf du Plessis (58 failed) for Chennai won the team with excellent innings. Even after the Mumbai bowlers shook the ball early in the game, Rajuda and du Plessis took over the team and prevented the Mumbai bowlers from walking in UAE conditions.
Murali Vijay and Shane Watson started serving against Mumbai, but both were fired early. Sam was promoted by Dhoni which acquitted him with 18 runs with six bowls. Chennai's performance looks stable, with the bowlers not disappointing in the first leg and continuing to take wickets regularly.
The Chennai bowlers made it impossible for Mumbai to score big, which played a big role in Chennai's five-wicket victory. Piyush Chawla may not be considered important in the Chennai squad, but used his experience at the 31-year-old spinner to play bowling brilliantly and take just one wicket, making just 21 runs in four overs.
Likewise, Lungi Ngidi, Ravindra Jadeja and Deepak Chahar also played their part when needed, but the Chennai team clearly would like the trio not to score points as they did in the first leg. Speaking of royals, he has never won a trophy other than the first season of the 2008 IPL. Looking at the 2020 season, the royals brought in several big T20 players to their squad.
Along with the young men Yashasvi Jaiswal, Ryan Parag and Kartik Tyagi, the royals have tried to create a good mix of youth and experience beyond Robin Uthappa, Shreyas Gopal and Varun Aaron.
Along with Ben Stokes and Smith, the Royals have added some top tier players. Stokes, however, is not sure what will play in the first leg. Royals expect rookie Jose Butler to continue his 2019 IPL kit this season, with Butler scoring 311 points in eight games last season. If Butler gets the support of Sanju Samson, then he can lead the team to a big score.
The biggest concern for the Royals will not be Stokes, who is currently with his dad in New Zealand and the situation is still unclear when he arrives. The team will depend a lot on Stokes, and the sooner they join the team, the better for them.
The team has good bowling opportunities under the leadership of Joffra Archer, Jaydev Unadkat, Varun Aaron, Ankit Rajput, Rahul Tevatia, Mayong Markande, Oshane Thomas and Andrew Ty. Much will depend on how quickly these people adapt to the situation in the UAE. If we look at the previous matches between the two teams, the Chennai table was definitely tough. Chennai won 14 of 21 matches between the two teams, with the rest of the matches won by members of the royal family.
Super Kings of Chennai - Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Kedar Jadhav, Ravindra Jadeja, Piyush Chawla, Dwayne Bravo, Karn Sharma, Shane Watson, Shardul Thakur, Ambati Rayudu, Murali Vijay, Faf du Plessi, Imran Lunghir, K. Dahir, K. M. Asif, Narayan Jagadishan, Monu Kumar, Rituraj Gaikwad, RK Sai Kishore, Josh Hazlewood, Sam Karran.
Rajasthan Royals - Steve Smith (Captain), Ankit Rajput, Ben Stokes, Joffra Archer, Jose Butler, Mahipal Lomror, Manan Vohra, Mayank Markande, Rahul Tevatia, Ryan Parag, Sanju Samson, Shashank Singh, Shreyas Goparpa, Va Robin, Jaidev Unadkat, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Anuj Rawat, Akash Singh, Kartik Tyagi, David Miller, Oshane Thomas, Anirud Joshi, Andrew Tye, Tom.