Rajasthan Royals, who won the inaugural edition of the IPL under the captaincy of Shane Warner, will be eyeing a second trophy under their young captain Sanju Samson. Let’s look at what the best possible XI for the Royals can be for IPL 2022.
Devdutt Padikkal, Karun Nair, Rassie Van der Dussen, Riyan Parag, Shimron Hetmyer, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Dhruv Jurel, Jos Buttler, Sanju Samson, Anunay Singh, Daryl Mitchell, James Neesham, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Ravichandran Ashwin & Shubham Gharwal, Kuldeep Sen, Kuldip Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Obed McCoy, Prasidh Krishna, Trent Boult, KC Kariappa, Tejas Baroka and Yuzvendra Chahal.
Predicted playing XI
Top-order: Jos Buttler and Yashasvi Jaiswal
Jos Buttler will open the innings for the Royals alongside the uncapped Yashasvi Jaiswal. Buttler is an absolutely destructive T20 batsmen who needs little introduction. The England international can be brutal in the powerplay overs. He has a strike rate of 150 in his IPL career of 65 matches and can win matches all by himself.
Jaiswal, on the other hand, was retained by the franchise ahead of the mega auction. The young batsman from Mumbai impressed in the last few games of IPL 2021 which helped him get retained. Jaiswal is not really a destructive batsman, but will be a good second fiddle to Buttler, who will go for the big shots. Young Jaiswal has played just 13 IPL games so far from which he has 289 runs at an average of 22.2.
Middle Order – Devdutt Padikkal, Sanju Samson, Shimron Hetmyer
Devdutt Padikkal, who opened the innings for the Royal Challengers Bangalore, is likely to be slotted in the middle order. Padikkal was bought by the Royals for a whopping Rs 7.75 crore in the mega auction and will be expected to bring returns for the franchise. The Karnataka batsman has not played too many years of IPL, but has been impressive in his brief career so far. This includes a maiden century in IPL 2021.
Captain Sanju Samson, on the other hand, has been the Royals’ best batsmen over the last couple of seasons. Last year, especially, he scored 484 runs in 14 matches at an average of 40.33 and a strike rate of 136.72.
Then comes Shimron Hetmyer, who was bought for Rs 8.5 crore. Hetmyer, like several of his fellow West Indian players, is a big hitting batsman who can accelerate the strike rate rapidly. The southpaw did well as a finisher for Delhi Capitals last year and will now be looking to hit lots of sixes for his new team.
All-rounders – Riyan Parag, James Neesham, Ravi Ashwin
The three all-rounders we are likely to see in the Royals’ playing XI are Riyan Parag, James Neesham and Ravi Ashwin. Neesham put up some impressive performances in last year’s T20 World Cup and has a strike rate of more than 151 in his T20 international career.
Riyan Parag, meanwhile, has been a part of the Royals family for a while now. All of 20 years of age, Parag is an effective legbreak bowler who also knows how to hit the big shots all over the ground.
The third all-rounder Ravi Ashwin needs no introduction. He will spearhead the spin bowling for the side but we have not really seen him play match-winning batting knocks in the IPL.
Bowlers – Yuzvendra Chahal, Trent Boult, Prasidh Krishna
Yuzvendra Chahal will share the spin bowling duties with Ashwin, while Trent Boult and Prasidh Krishna will be the frontline pacers. Boult bowled match-winning spells for the Mumbai Indians in 2019 and 2020, while Prasidh Krishna has come up the ranks swiftly since making his IPL debut with KKR in 2018. He has 30 wickets in 34 IPL games.
Image credit : IPL