IPL 2019: Rajasthan Royals Among Favourites to Lift the Trophy – Shane Warne
Australian spin-king Shane Warne believes the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Rajasthan Royals (RR) is one of the favourite teams to lift this year’s coveted trophy. The twelfth edition of domestic professional league competition will kick off on March 23. According to Warne, the IPL 2019 could be a massive moment for the Jaipur-based franchise.
“The squad that Rajasthan Royals have, I think we will be one of the favourites,” Warne told India Today.
The 49-year-old legendary Warne himself had been at the helm of affairs for Royals in the maiden edition of the IPL. Royals won the last-ball thriller by three wickets at Wankhede on June 1, 2008.
Apart from the other season local skippers, Warne was the only overseas captain to lift the title for Royals.
He added it would be sad if they would miss out on featuring in the playoffs.
“Mumbai and Chennai will always be favourites. But for us, anything less than the playoffs will be a disappointing year. When you think about it, we won it in the first year and we haven’t won it for the next ten years. I think it could be the Royals’ year this time,” he added.
In the previous edition, CSK lifted the trophy on its comeback in the IPL fold.
However, Royals also faced a two-year suspension including CSK, following the fallout of IPL fixing saga in 2013. The teams miss out in the ninth and tenth edition respectively post fixing investigation.
Concurrently, Warne who’s the Brand Ambassador for the Royals stressed the franchise would miss out on their prominent players due to the upcoming 2019 World Cup. Also, Warne maintained the availability of such significant players would play a quintessential role for the side.
While hailing the depth in the squad, Warne believes the players have enough to showcase in the forthcoming IPL.
Now, it would be interesting to see how things will shape up as Smith has been suggested it will take five-to-six-weeks for his recovery.
“The boys have a put together an amazing squad. It is a World Cup year. We are probably going to lose Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Steve Smith and Jofra Archer maybe. But we think they will play 10-11 games and can still have an impact in the tournament,” Warne concluded.
Regarding an IPL track record, Royals made it to the playoffs stage in 2013, 2015 and 2018 respectively.
The franchise players will don the pink jersey for the entire IPL 2019 edition.
Tahir Ibn Manzoor
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