Aakash Chopra has picked the Rajasthan Royals’ ideal playing XI for IPL 2021. He made his selections in a video shared on his YouTube channel.
The Rajasthan Royals had released last year’s skipper Steve Smith and appointed Sanju Samson as their new captain. They will hope to turn things around in IPL 2021 after finishing the bottom of the points table last season.
Akash Chopra Wants To Keep Chris Morris At No. 7 After Picking An All Indian Middle Order
With Rajasthan Royals likely to open with the England duo of Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes, Aakash Chopra went with an all-Indian middle order.
“They have said they will open with Buttler and Stokes. So what can we do? Sanju Samson at three, Riyan Parag at four, Tewatia at five, Dube at six,” said Aakash Chopra.
While highlighting the Rajasthan Royals do not seem to have a formidable middle order, the former India cricketer picked Chris Morris to play the finisher’s role apart from being one of their primary bowlers.
“You might feel it’s not the best four, five and six, I also feel the same. At No.7 you keep Chris Morris,” added Aakash Chopra.
The Rajasthan Royals are replete with all-rounders but do not have much experience in their Indian batting department. They might have to include the in-form big-hitting Protea batsman David Miller at some stage if their middle-order fails to deliver.
Not a single Rajasthan batsman performed consistently through the IPL 2020 season. Sanju Samson started strong but he failed to sustain his form. Ben Stokes missed nearly half the season but showed what he’s capable of with a superb century against Mumbai Indians as an opener. However, consistency eluded him.
A lot was expected of Jos Buttler but he too had an underwhelming season, both at the top of the order and in the middle. Rahul Tewatia was undoubtedly impressive lower down the order and punched well above his weight, as he finished IPL 2020 as the only Indian player with 10+ wickets and 250+ runs.
Aakash Chopra Reckons To Play Both Mustafzur Rahman And Jofra Archer When He Is Available
Aakash Chopra reckons the Rajasthan Royals will have to field Bangladesh pacer, Mustafizur Rahman, in their playing XI until Jofra Archer becomes available. The Rajasthan Royals will miss the services of England pacer Jofra Archer at least in the initial stages of the tournament.
“Then you can play four bowlers in which you will have Shreyas Gopal, Jaydev Unadkat, Kartik Tyagi and with Jofra not being there, you can play Mustafizur and Jofra when he comes back,” said Chopra.
After Jofra Archer, Rajasthan Royals (RR) will miss the services of Bangladeshi pacer Mustafizur Rahman for the first two matches in the IPL 2021 as when he reaches India on April 5, he will have to spend a mandatory seven-day quarantine, ruling him out of the first match against Punjab Kings on April 12.
The former KKR player concluded by stating the Rajasthan Royals would have to necessarily play two overseas pacers, considering the lack of depth in their Indian bowling department.
“In my opinion, they should definitely play two overseas fast bowlers if this team has to go ahead in this IPL,” signed off Aakash Chopra.
The Rajasthan Royals also have the option of playing Andrew Tye as an overseas pacer if Mustafizur Rahman fails to deliver the goods. But much like their batting, the lack of experience is evident even in their Indian bowling contingent. Sanju Samson is expected to do the bulk of the scoring for the Rajasthan Royals this season.
Chris Morris, the most expensive player in IPL history, is another vital player for RR. With England pacer Jofra Archer’s availability for IPL 2021 still uncertain, Chris Morris could have to bowl at the death. Chris Morris was bought by the Rajasthan Royals for a whopping ₹16.25 crore at the IPL 2021 Auction, with the South African expected to be the side’s frontline pacer this season.
Probable Rajasthan Royals XI: Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler (wk), Sanju Samson (c), Riyan Parag, Rahul Tewatia, Shivam Dube, Chris Morris, Shreyas Gopal, Mustafizur Rahman/Jofra Archer/ Andrew Tye, Kartik Tyagi, Jaydev Unadkat