Rajasthan Royals squad: Can RR win IPL 2023?
India’s biggest cricketing festival, Indian Premier League is back for another season. The 2023 edition is slated to be played from March 31 to May 28 at 12 different venues across the country. The tickets open for the first few matches are said to be sold out, which is a testament to the popularity of the T20 league across the country.
The home-and-away format brings another excitement to the cash-rich league. Each team will play seven matches at home and the other seven at the opposition's venue. This format helps the league give no undue advantage to any of the teams participating in a fixture and promotes a balanced atmosphere.
In the last edition, Rajasthan Royals emerged as the runner-up after losing to Gujarat Titans. Let’s take a look at how they are shaping up ahead of the 2023 season.
Also Read: Can SRH win IPL 2023?
Can RR win the IPL 2023?
Rajasthan Royals have all the quality and ability to win their second Indian Premier League title in the 2023 edition. They have a well-rounded bowling attack, a powerful batting line-up and handy all-rounders, who could help them ace crunch moments of the game.
However, executing plans at the right point in time will guarantee success for any team in the tournament. In the last edition, the team certainly had trouble finding a partner for Jos Buttler, and there was a continuous swap between Devdutt Padikkal and Yashasvi Jaiswal. It is expected that the team would be ready with a clear strategy at the top.
The inclusion of Jason Holder and Joe Root will bring experienced batters in the final overs for the Royals. Furthermore, Shimron Hetmyer showed his worth in the last season and is expected to be available for the entirety of IPL 2023.
In the bowling unit, Ravichandran Ashwin and Yuzvendra Chahal are cunning and brave bowlers, who will look to keep up the pressure in the middle overs. The likes of Trent Boult, Kuldeep Sen/Navdeep Saini will be key fast bowlers, who are expected to play a and key role to put the team in good stead in the powerplay as well as death overs.
All in all, RR would be the favourites in the IPL 2023 edition due to the presence of quality bowlers and batters, have proven themselves in the T20s. Also, the good run in the last edition would help them soak pressure better than other teams and prevail on most occasions.
Rajasthan Royals Squad: IPL 2023
Big names from IPL 2023 auction: Joe Root, Adam Zampa, Jason Holder
The runners-up of the IPL 2022, Rajasthan Royals already had a potent squad ahead of the IPL 2023 auction. They released experienced, but their under-performers, Daryl Mitchell, James Neesham and Rassie Van der Dussen.
On the auction day, Royals had a field day as they tried to fill the gaps visible in the 2022 edition and add solid back-ups in all departments. They snapped the services of former England skipper Joe Root, who will be featuring in his debut IPL season. Although Root has been inactive in white-ball cricket, he has shown glimpses of his innovative shots in Tests and is a proven performer in the ODIs with 16 tons.
Jason Holder will make his way from Lucknow Super Giants to the Royals, and be a crucial fast-bowling all-rounder, the Royals need in the 2023 season. Adam Zampa, Australia’s first-choice spinner in limited overs will serve as a solid backup to Ravichandran Ashwin and Yuzvendra Chahal. Murugan Ashwin, who played well for Mumbai Indians last year is another quality spin option for RR.
Donovan Ferreira has impressed with his abilities in South Africa's domestic cricket with the bat and can be a handy spinner as well. Other than them, Sanju Samson, Jos Buttler and Trent Boult provide the team with experience in this format, while Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shimron Hetmyer and Riyan Parag bring a fearless approach.
Full Squad: Sanju Samson (c), Ravichandran Ashwin, Yuzvendra Chahal, Devdutt Padikkal, Dhruv Jurel, KC Cariappa, Kuldeep Sen, Kuldip Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Sandeep Sharma, Riyan Parag, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Jos Buttler, Obed McCoy, Shimron Hetmyer, Trent Boult, Jason Holder, Adam Zampa, Donovan Ferreira, K.M. Asif, Murugan Ashwin, Akash Vashisht, Abdul P A, Kunal Rathore, Joe Root.
Probable Playing XI: Jos Buttler, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Sanju Samson (c & wk), Joe Root, Devdutt Padikkal, Shimron Hetmyer, Riyan Parag, Ravichandran Ashwin, Trent Boult, Kuldeep Sen, Yuzvendra Chahal
Rajasthan Royals: Strengths and Weaknesses
● Terrific bowling attack
Rajasthan Royals have undoubtedly the best bowling attack in the tournament, with experience and track record in the T20s. The RR bowlers took the most wickets (97) in the last season among all teams which helped them reach the final.
Trent Boult, Ravichandran Ashwin, and Yuzvendra Chahal are the key bowlers in the line-up, with expertise in securing breakthroughs in all junctures of the match. The trio took 10+ wickets in 2022 and kept the opposition run rate under check.
In terms of the fourth bowler, Kuldeep Sen, Navdeep Saini and Sandeep Sharma are the credible options for the team. If the team decides to play one between Ashwin and Chahal, Aussie star Adam Zampa might be a perfect replacement in the XI.
Donovan Ferreira and Jason Holder are the all-rounders in the side, and will be a value addition, if they get their due chances throughout the tournament.
● Quality batting unit
As they say, the team’s top five needs to be solid to help the team in posting strong totals or chase down any scores on the board. The Royals certainly have a talent pool of batters, who can take the game away from the opposition in no time.
In 2022, Jos Buttler emerged as the orange cap holder with 863 runs with four tons and as many fifties. His partner, Yashasvi Jaiswal was fearless with his approach to provide the team a good start in the powerplay. Also, Devdutt Padikkal was successful as an opener and the middle-order batter.
The skipper Sanju Samson did well to score 458 runs at 146.79 and will look to convert his starts into big scores. Then, the presence of Joe Root and Shimron Hetmyer will make the batting unit more experienced and guarantee RR a fine flourish in the final overs. Furthermore, if Riyan Parag and Ravichandran Ashwin can be proficient with the bat, Royals could post strong totals on most occasions.
● Selection conundrum
Rajasthan Royals will certainly have issues in terms of selecting their four overseas players in the XI. The likes of Joe Root, Jos Buttler and Trent Boult are likely to be the stars for RR in this edition. The lone spot could be taken by Adam Zampa, Jason Holder, Shimron Hetmyer, Donovan Ferreira or Obed McCoy. All these cricketers are proven performers in this format, and will be difficult for the franchise to finalize their pick.
Hetmyer did well to score 314 runs at 153.92 in 2022 for RR, while Holder picked 16 wickets in 12 games for LSG. Zampa is one of the finest spinners in the shortest format, but will face tough competition from Ravichandran Ashwin and Yuzvendra Chahal.
Donovan Ferreira impressed in the SA20 2023, while Obed McCoy played well for RR last year and has been doing well in T20s overall.
Rajasthan Royals History
Rajasthan Royals emerged as the winner in the inaugural edition of the IPL under the leadership of Shane Warne. They won 11 out of 14 league matches and prevailed over Chennai Super Kings by three wickets in the final to lift the trophy.
However, the team’s strategy to trust the abilities of youngsters could not produce enough success for them, as they failed to reach the finals in all the editions since 2008. In the 2022 season, RR secured nine victories in 14 appearances to seal a place in the playoffs. They had to battle it out in Qualifier 2 against Royal Challengers Bangalore, after losing to Gujarat Titans in Qualifier 1.
In the final, RR could only post 130 on the board, and the Titans chased down the score easily. But, the team would be upbeat to go one step ahead in the 2023 edition.
Rajasthan Royals IPL 2023 Schedule
Like the 2022 season, Rajasthan Royals are set to play 14 league matches in 2023 as well. They are placed alongside Mumbai Indians, Kolkata Knight Riders, Delhi Capitals and Lucknow Super Giants in Group A. RR will play a single match against each of the aforementioned teams, while facing off on two occasions against the other five teams from Group B.
The home and away format is back in this IPL edition, with each team playing seven matches at home, and remaining at away venues. Likewise, the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur will play a host venue to the Royals. The Rajasthan-based franchise will begin their IPL 2023 campaign against Sunrisers Hyderabad on April 2 in Hyderabad.