Arun Gopalakrishnan in Mumbai 14 May 2014 - 06:02pm IST
Preview: Match 41 – RR v DD
Royals hope to bounce back against Daredevils in Ahmedabad
Match 41 of Pepsi IPL 2014 will see the Rajasthan Royals lock horns with the Delhi Daredevils.
Rajasthan Royals are placed in the top half the table and are on the brink of qualifying for the Playoffs. The difference in points between them and the rest of the teams in the fray is slowly reducing, and RR will want to extend the advantage they have, before other teams start closing in. In their most recent outing, against the Chennai Super Kings in Ranchi, RR did not capitalise on a solid start and returned home empty-handed.
For the Delhi Daredevils, Pepsi IPL 2014 has been a largely forgettable tournament. The team has won just two of their 10 league matches so far and lie at the floor of the table. In their most recent outing, in Bengaluru, they were blown away by Royal Challengers Bangalore’s Yuvraj Singh and ended on the wrong side of the result. With the team’s chances of progressing to the Playoffs virtually non-existent, one could possibly see a different Delhi Daredevils side on the field; expect them to come out and express themselves while enjoying the game.
Thursday, May 15, 2014, 8 pm IST
Sardar Patel Stadium, Ahmedabad
For a large part of the season, the young turks have carried the Rajasthan Royals. Sanju Samson and Ajinkya Rahane set the ball rolling early in the season and Karun Nair joined the party a while later. Rahane has since gone off the boil, while skipper Shane Watson is yet to stamp his presence. With the competition heading to the business end, it is about time the two senior pros started to find form.
With just four matches to go, Delhi Daredevils are yet to find their best combination. They have had moments of brilliance during the season, but most of them have been from the batsmen. The two players capable of playing those entertaining knocks and who are capable of blowing away opponents are skipper Kevin Pietersen and JP Duminy. While Duminy has impressed with his strokeplay all season, KP has been impressive in his cameos in the last couple of matches.
Notes from previous match
Rajasthan Royals v Chennai Super Kings: RR seemed to have found yet another able youngster in Ankit Sharma in their ranks. The 23-year-old from Madhya Pradesh was thrown in the deep end when he was asked to open the batting; not only did he dominate the opening partnership with his captain by scoring a quick-fire 30, he also bowled impressively to return with figures of two for 20 from his four overs. Areas of improvement include shot selection by the batsmen.
Delhi Daredevils v Royal Challengers Bangalore: On a pitch where the RCB spinners were able obtain turn and tie down the opposition batsmen, DD will be worried that their own specialist spinner – Imran Tahir – did not have a great outing. The leg-spinner lacked the discipline that was expected from him and that hurt the team badly. When chasing in excess of eight runs an over, it is important that teams get a solid platform at the start, which did not happen in DD’s case as they lost two wickets in the first two overs.
The Rajasthan Royals have a 7-6 win-loss record from 13 previous meetings against the Delhi Daredevils. In the most recent meeting between the two teams – in Delhi earlier this season – RR (powered by opener Karun Nair’s maiden half-century in the IPL) chased down 153 with seven wickets in hand.
48.61 – Percentage of runs conceded by Rajasthan Royals through boundaries. They are the only team this season to concede less than 50 percent of the runs given away by a team in boundaries.
Both teams will hit the field next on May 19. Rajasthan Royals will draw close out their home schedule for the season when they take on the Mumbai Indians in Ahmedabad. The Delhi Daredevils, meanwhile, head back home and host Kings XI Punjab later in the evening.