Rajasthan News

Rajasthan Royals may surprise in IPL 6

by RajasthanDirect
Mar 26, 2013

Rajasthan Royals were the most underrated team in the inaugural edition of the IPL, when they won the title.

However, now, in the tournament’s sixth year, memories of that triumph have become foggy; a distant achievement that seems more like a dream. Since then, Shane Warne has passed on the captaincy baton to another veteran in Rahul Dravid.

The Indian legend is soft-spoken and uncontroversial, quite unlike Warne. Yet, he carries the charisma that made the Australian such a sought-after figure in the IPL.

Can this charisma work wonders for the Royals just the way it had six years ago? Dravid’s presence will surely motivate his teammates, but will that be enough to win them the title?

An analysis of their arsenal this time would tell you that Dravid has an extremely difficult job at hand. Royals go into the tournament with a number of young and relatively unknown players.

That, in fact, has been their strategy in the IPL so far. They gamble with youngsters, picked up rather cheap, and hope they will fire.

This time too, Royals have gambled in what they consider as potential match-winners, not quite opening up their purse as a few other teams did.

The Sachin Babys, Kusal Janith Pereras,Pravin Tambes and Rahul Shuklas do not really have much to show. But then who knows, there could be a star hidden in one of them.

Last year too, the gamble with Trinidadian Kevon Cooper paid off, till he picked up an injury. This time, Cooper would have the company of fellow West Indians Fidel Edwards and Samuel Badree.

Dravid can be expected to once again anchor their batting, with Ajinkya Rahane giving them a good start at the top, along with Shane Watson.

Owais Shah, Brad Hogg and Brad Hodge make up the old brigade, who would be expected to contribute. Bowling remains a major area of concern.

Shaun Tait is erratic, Sreesanth is coming out of a career-threatening injury and Siddharth Trivedi has his limitations. Among spinners, Ajith Chandila would be boosted by memories of his hattrick last year and Harmeet Singh will have to prove his worth. To be fair, Royals did have their off-the-field problems.

Till recently, they did not know whether they would get to play at Sawai Mansingh Stadium. As if the ongoing legal battle with the BCCI wasn’t enough, they were slapped with a Rs 100-crore penalty by the Enforcement Directorate.


Rahul Dravid: ‘Mr Dependable’ has shown he can score at a brisk pace. But the added pressure of opening the innings might have been too much for him. This time, with Shane Watson available throughout, Dravid might be a relieved man.

Shane Watson: If it’s T20, you can’t afford to ignore Shane Watson. After a disappointing India series, the Aussie all-rounder would go all out to prove his worth in the IPL.

Ajinkya Rahane: For, IPL-V was the one to remember. Opening the innings with Rahul Dravid, the stylish batsman proved his mettle, scoring 560 runs in 16 matches.

Kevon Cooper: For Trinidadian Kevon Cooper, IPL-V was nothing less than a fairytale. Playing in his first IPL, Cooper stood out with his all-round performance. From just another rookie player, he went on to become one of the key members of Royals, before fracturing his knee.


Johan Botha, Dinesh Chandimal, Paul Collingwood, Aditya Dole, Samad Fallah, Faiz Fazal, Sumit Narwal, Pankaj Singh, Amit Paunikar, Abhishek Raut, Gajendra Singh.


James Faulkner, Fidel Edwards, Samuel Badree, Sachin Baby, Sanju Samson, Kusal Janith Perera, Harmeet Singh, Pravin Tambe, Rahul Shukla


The international fixtures won’t affect Royals at all. This time, no big series is scheduled during the IPL. Zimbabwe would play Bangladesh, while the Kiwis would take on England in May. Since, Royals have no players from these four countries, all foreigners will be around throughout the IPL VI.


The opening pair is always crucial and the Royals might have the ideal combination in Shane Watson and Ajinkya Rahane. Last year, with Watson missing out on most of the season, Rahul Dravid had formed a fairly successful partnership with Rahane. However, this time, he is likely to make way Watson.


Paddy Upton is better known as a mental conditioning coach. With Dravid playing the role of mentor to perfection, Royals needed someone to motivate the team. Upton fits the bill. He also shares a good rapport with Dravid.


Chairman: Ranjit Barthakur. CEO: Raghu Iyer Assistant coach: Monty Desai. Director: Zubin Bharucha Manager: Sushil Tulaskar. Physio: John Gloster (Aus). Masseur: Derek Sedgmen (Australia) Logistics manager: Z Ahmed Other key members: Rajeev Khanna, Shantanu Chari. Australia all-rounder Shane Watson will have to revisit his 2008 form to ensure that the Royals are serious title contenders in IPL VI Rajasthan Royals May Not Be The Most Fancied Team, But With Watson, Cooper And Rahane, They Can Cause A Few Upsets.

src: TOI

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