Rajasthan Royals looking to bring smile back to Jaipur

May 16th, 2008 - 10:58 pm ICT by admin  


Jaipur, May 16 (IANS) There is an uneasy calm here after multiple blasts rocked the city Tuesday. And under a cloud of suspicion and fear, Indian Premier League table toppers Rajasthan Royals will take on bottom placed Bangalore Royal Challengers in a match Saturday. It is all over for Royal Challengers in this league as they have no hope of qualifying for the knock-out stage and will play to salvage pride. Victory for Rajasthan Royals would not only ensure them a semi-final berth, but will also bring smiles back to the faces of the locals, whose lives have been shattered by the serial bomb attacks.

The IPL management have assured the foreign players of fool-proof security, and the presence of heavy security cover will surely steal some free spirit from the match at the Sawai Man Singh Stadium, which will resemble a fortress.

Royals’ overseas players - skipper Shane Warne, Shane Watson and Graeme Smith - have expressed their security concerns after the blasts and were even reportedly mulling to return home. But they have decided to stay on after the IPL addressed their apprehensions.

With their back to the wall, Royal Challengers may pose some stiff challenge for the hosts, who are having the best run in the tournament with an inexperienced side.

Royal Challengers’ poor performance has irked team owner Vijay Mallya so much that he vent out his anger against skipper Rahul Dravid. But the beleaguered captain found support from his team-mate Anil Kumble, who in his syndicated column Friday batted for Dravid.

Dravid and Co will be looking to prove Mallya wrong and Kumble’s words will obviously boost his team. The batting line-up boasts of some of the big names in Mark Boucher, Misbah ul-Haq and Craig White, and it is high time for them to fire together.

In the last match against Kings XI Punjab, the Royal Challengers batsmen got good starts but none could convert them into big scores. And if they want to beat Rajasthan Royals, one of the batsmen will have to score big.

Challengers’ bowling has also been rusty and the Rajasthan Royals batsmen would be hoping to tear them apart.

For the home team, both bowlers and batsmen have complimented each other and they will look to repeat their performance and bring some cheer back to the shaken people.

Teams:

Rajasthan Royals: Shane Warne (captain), Aditya Angle, Swapnil Asnodkar, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammad Kaif, Kamran Akmal (wicketkeeper), Sumit Khatri, Taruwar Kohli, Justin Langer, Darren Lehmann, Dimitri Mascarenhas, Parag More, Morne Morkel, Pankaj Singh, Munaf Patel, Niraj Patel, Yusuf Pathan, Mahesh Rawat, Anup Revandkar, Dinesh Salunkhe, Jaydev Shah, Graeme Smith, Sohail Tanvir, Siddharth Trivedi, Shane Watson and Younis Khan

Bangalore Royal Challengers: Rahul Dravid (captain), Abdur Razzak, Balachandra Akhil, K.P. Appanna, Jagadeesh Arunkumar, Praveen Kumar, Devraj Patil, Vinay Kumar, Mark Boucher (wicket-keeper), Nathan Bracken, Shivnaraine Chanderpaul, Bharat Chipli, Shreevats Goswami (wk), Anil Kumble, Dale Steyn, Cameron White, Wasim Jaffer, Sunil Joshi, Jacques Kallis, Zaheer Khan, Virat Kohli and Misbah-ul-Haq

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