Rajasthan has lost just once in the last three seasons to Mumbai, but its squad is stretched thin
It has dominated the mighty Mumbai Indians over the last three seasons, winning five of their six meetings. But ahead of Thursday’s clash against the defending champion in Delhi, Rajasthan Royals will have it tough, as it looks to make the most of limited resources.
As if losing Jofra Archer and Ben Stokes to injuries wasn’t a big blow, Liam Livingstone and Andrew Tye pulled out because of COVID-related issues. It leaves Sanju Samson’s side with only four overseas cricketers: Jos Buttler, David Miller, Chris Morris and Mustafizur Rahman.
The RR team management will also have to ensure that the recent departures, coupled with the disturbing events outside the bubble, don’t end up demoralising the domestic cricketers.
MI, after a five-day break, will be eager to bounce back from successive losses. In addition to improving its mid-table position, the squad will be keen to gift captain Rohit Sharma a victory on the eve of his 34th birthday.
MI will be hoping that Hardik Pandya gets back into his groove. The hard-hitting batsman has been found wanting, with opposition bowlers successfully employing wide yorkers against him. Hardik’s inability to find a counter has played a part in MI managing only two wins in the first five games.
MI has a reputation of shifting into a higher gear mid-season and it will hope that the new venue brings with it a change of fortunes.