Rajasthan take on Hyderabad in match 40 of the Indian T20 league at the Dubai International Stadium on Thursday.
Despite boasting a power-packed batting unit, things haven’t gone according to plan for Rajasthan this year. They have won only four matches out of ten, and are still within touching distance of a play-off spot. Currently, Rajasthan sit in sixth place in the points table and are coming here with a convincing win over Chennai.
J Buttler was outstanding in his 48-ball 70 that guided the team home but the form of B Stokes has been a cause of concern. The team has relied heavily on the duo of J Archer and R Tewatia with the ball and the bat, respectively. Rajasthan need to win at least three out of their last four games from here on if they wish to make the play-offs, something easier said than done.
Hyderabad, on the other hand, are looking to get back into winning ways after losing their previous three games in the league. Despite the efforts of D Warner, J Bairstow, and R Khan, Hyderabad have failed to win several games.
However, Natarajan has lessened the death bowling concerns to some extent. The onus is on the openers to start the fightback from this point. The Orange Army will be hoping for a strong performance, especially with their hopes of a play-off place on the line.
The reverse fixture saw the pair of R Parag and R Tewatia pull off a thrilling run chase at this same venue 10 days ago. With two evenly matched teams on paper and two valuable points on offer, we should be in for a cracking contest in Dubai.
- Match: Rajasthan vs. Hyderabad, Match 40
- Venue: Dubai International Stadium, Dubai
- Date & Time: Oct. 22, 2020, at 7.30 PM IST
Probable Playing XI
J Buttler (WK), S Smith (C), S Samson, R Uthappa, B Stokes, R Parag, R Tewatia, S Gopal, J Archer, A Rajpoot, K Tyagi
D Warner (C), J Bairstow (WK), M Pandey, K Williamson, P Garg, V Shankar, A Samad, R Khan, S Sharma, K Ahmed, T Natarajan
The pitch at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium has favored the batsmen slightly in the recent games. Teams have started to exploit the shorter side of the ground, but they could be in for a test against the spinners, who are making good use of the slowness of the track. The pacers will have a say in this game, with a change of pace being a key variation at the venue.
Although dew is expected in the second innings, both teams will ideally look to bat first, as the pitch is likely to slow down as the game progresses. The average first innings score in 17 games at this venue has been 170, so anything above 160 should be a competitive score.
- J Buttler’s exploits against Chennai showed why he is so highly rated in the current batch of players. He will look to start from where he left off the other night.
- After getting five single-digit scores, S Smith strikes form with 57 and 24* in his last two innings. He will look to partner the big hitters in the team successfully.
- R Tewatia has been making meaningful contributions with both the bat and the ball for the team. And, who can forget his heroics when he came against R Khan and Hyderabad just a week back?
- J Bairstow has scored 316 runs in 9 innings at an average of 35. Two of his three fifties have come at this venue.
- K Williamson has not faced as many balls as the others on the team. But he has maximized his opportunities and will be key on a slow surface.
- T Natarajan has bowled the pressure overs and delivered consistently. He has 11 wickets in 9 matches and looks good to increase the count.
Howzat Dream Team
- Wicketkeepers: J Bairstow, J Buttler
- Batsmen: S Smith, R Uthappa, D Warner, M Pandey
- All-rounder: R Tewatia
- Bowlers: K Ahmed, T Natarajan, J Archer, K Tyagi
- Captain: J Bairstow/D Warner
- Vice Captain: J Buttler/ J Archer
NOTE: The Howzat dream team above is just a suggestion. You can select your own fantasy cricket team, and win cash daily. Also, don’t forget to make any necessary changes to your team once the actual playing 11 is announced by each team (30 minutes before the start of the match) as some players you have selected might not be part of the fantasy 11.