Undoubtedly the “Arsenal” of IPL T20 Cricket, Rajasthan Royals once again proved to the world that big names are not needed to perform well. A strong 3rd finish followed by a runner-up trophy at the CLT20 is a commanding performance to say the least. Though, unlike MI, they could not provide a perfect sendoff to their current mentor Rahul Dravid, but they can make him proud with a strong performance this time around. Also, amidst all the shame of having players who fixed for mere money, RR will be eager to prove a point once again.
Again, the RR relied on young talent over international experience. Having retained the likes of Rahane, Sanju Samson, Shane Watson, Faulkner and Binny, they successfully bought old-warhorses of the team, which includes Praveen Tambe and Brad Hodge. Other quality buys include uncapped West Indian Kevon Cooper, Tim Southee, Steven Smith and Delhite Unmukt Chand.
Overall, the quality of international players are better this time around. Not that all are bashing allrounders or flamboyant batsmen, all are intelligent players and the composition looks good.
Shane Watson : The all- rounder was responsible for their shocking victory in the first ever edition of the IPL. But off late, he has been out of form. But it is chance for him to regain some good form and show the CA selectors that he still has it in him.
Sanju Samson : Never before an uncapped 19 year old has created this sort of waves in IPL. But this youngster from Thiruvananthapuram was in his prime in the last edition of IPL. As Dhoni may not have many years in his hand, he seems to be the perfect bill to take up his place in the international team, and performing well here will be a great confidence booster for this youngster.
James Faulkner : This explosive all-rounder came into the limelight after couple of blazing innings against India about 6 months ago. But he will be needed as a bowler primarily, and he will play a key part in the RR bowling unit.
Ajinkya Rahane, Sanju Samson, Stuart Binny, Rajat Bhatia, Abhishek Nayar, Unmukt Chand, Pravin Tambe, Dhaval Kulkarni, Iqbal Abdullah, Karun Nair, Rahul Tewatia, Dishank Yagnik, Ankush Bains, Deepak Hooda, Ankit Sharma, Vikramjeet Malik, Amit Mishra, Shane Watson, James Faulkner, Steve Smith, Brad Hodge, Kevin Cooper, Tim Southee, Ben Cutting, Kane Richardson.