Punjab v Rajasthan, IPL 2013, Mohali May 8, 2013

Likeable teams in lively tussle for playoff push

35

Match facts

Thursday, May 9, 2013
Start time 1600 (1030 GMT)

Big Picture

These must be the two teams neutrals like the most. Rajasthan Royals are led by one of the most admired Indian cricketers of all time, and have made the most use of domestic - and limited, mind you - resources. Kings XI Punjab have not been the most efficient side of the tournament by a long distance, but they have played attractively. It also helps that at almost every step of the way, they have had to deal with umpiring howlers, which they have complained about but not without humour.

This is no goodwill match, though. This is pretty serious business with pretty serious implications. Kings XI need to win almost every one of their remaining five games. They have five wins so far, and nine is no longer the magic number because three teams have either been eliminated or are on the brink of elimination, making it a much tighter competition in the middle of the table.

Royals have six points more than Kings XI, but the latter have a game in hand. All the winning of hearts and matches against odds might amount to nothing if Royals slip here.

Form guide

Kings XI Punjab WLLLW
Rajasthan Royals WWLWW

Watch out for...

Kings XI have relied mainly on David Miller, whose good performance hasn't come as a surprise to those who follow South African cricket, but they have in their side a man who almost single-handedly took them to the semi-final of the inaugural IPL. Shaun Marsh has shown glimpses of that form in the three matches he has been able to play so far, but Kings XI can really do with the real deal here.

If IPL performances matter for India selection, Ajinkya Rahane has started his good run a touch too late, scoring back-to-back fifties and claiming the Man-of-the-Match award in both the matches. For Royals, though, the runs haven't come too late, and they will need more of the same from him.

Stats and trivia

  • The two highest successful chases this IPL belong to Kings XI. Royals are not too far behind. They have scripted the fourth- and fifth-highest successful chases this season.
  • Miller has now scored three successive scores of fifty or more. This is not too rare an even in Twenty20 cricket, but only seven men have gone a step ahead. His century against Royal Challengers Bangalore, scored off 38 balls, was the sixth-fastest in T20s.
  • At 813 runs, Rahul Dravid and Rahane are now the fourth-most prolific opening partnership in IPL. Only Michael Hussey and M Vijay have done better than their eight stands of 50 or above.
  • This is the fourth match Royals are playing in eight days. Only Royal Challengers have had to go through such a busy week in this IPL.

Quotes

"We are very close to play-offs, there is no doubt about that. We have been playing very good cricket, but we still need to finish it off strongly. To get to the finals, certainly we have got the quality players."
Royals' Shane Watson is confident

"I know it sounds like a whinge. And it is."
Kings XI's Adam Gilchrist while joking about the umpiring blunders that his team has suffered

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on May 9, 2013, 5:16 GMT

    Miller looks in prime touch and can kill any team. especially batting second. But, like i said before, Miller was looking primed to win a game single-handedly for KXIP for past couple of matches but somehow failed to cross the finish line. He finally crossed the finish line against RCB and law of averages might catch up with him. He might fail today. I hope Dravid wins the toss and RR fields first. That would be half the job done. RR's strength is batting, so save it for the last. RR should play an all pace attack like at Jaipur against KKR. Sreesanth and Edwards for Tambe and Tait. Bowl KXIP out for less than 140 and chase it down 16 overs. That'd boost the NRR.

  • Abitha on May 9, 2013, 10:40 GMT

    All the Veterans are playing and scoring Sachin Dravid Hussey. Make this your Day Gillie. A day to REMEMBERGood Luck Kashinath

  • TSJ07 on May 9, 2013, 10:35 GMT

    Its going to be a cracker of a game here in Mohali. Both teams would like to win to get boost to their chances of reaching in the last four. I'm supporting KXIP but Dravid is my hero and IMO No.1 cricketer from India (not God), a real team man and someone who could be role model for today's budding cricketers. I hope RR loses today only to win next all matches just like KXIP win all their next matches. Difficulot but not impossible.

  • Qa_ankit on May 9, 2013, 9:23 GMT

    Well my combination is bit different. I might surprise a bit but truly speaking i might be thinking like Dravid. I will not touch my opening pair for sure and with watson at 3. But i will bring one person till yet no body has talked or might have forgot. Parera. I am not a big fan of him as haven't seen him play but i feel he can come for this game. So my team with some little changes will be: Dravid, Rahane, Watty, Parera, Binny, Hodge, Samson, Faulkner, Trivedi, Sreesanth and one spinner. If not Parera, then would love to go for Edwards for sure. Bring some thing that can shock the other team. Else they can make plans and execute them.

  • Kashi0127 on May 9, 2013, 8:51 GMT

    Its going to be interesting tussle. Two teams I like most and like to see them in finals. I can bet Dravid will not panic like Kohli if there is a Miller onslought!

  • latecut_04 on May 9, 2013, 8:45 GMT

    As much as i like RR since we are at the business end of the tournament I do hope they overcome their shortcomings.Trivedi needs to be replaced.Shaun Tait may fire especially considering the match is at Mohali.(i asume its).Also from what i remember about Fidel Edwards he is too good to be warming the benches.not sure about his current from though.On the batting front RR struggled earlier when Watto failed to deliver.Dravid-Rahane have come to party in the last 2 matches but they were comparitively weaker bowling sides.Hope to see my dear Dravid's yet another victory..Halla Bol..Jeetega bhai jeetega...Rajasthan Jeetega!!!!

  • on May 9, 2013, 8:43 GMT

    KXIP will win... Chak de Punjab

  • Sunilcecil on May 9, 2013, 8:30 GMT

    Bring in azhar that will give bowling the sting that lacked in previous match! 190 runs should not have been scored!

  • SherjilIslam on May 9, 2013, 8:15 GMT

    @caught_knott_bowled_old on (May 9, 2013, 6:04 GMT):You are spot on. Rajasthan with the resources of Watson,Dravid,Rahane,Faulknera,Tait,Edwards cannot be called as underdogs.They had a very good mix. of local talents and they have a cool sets of options. The actual underdogs are KXIP. With very few quality resources,they are pushing themselves against all odds.See their line-up, i don't think any of the current player of their squad is a regular in their national team.

  • himanshu.team on May 9, 2013, 7:18 GMT

    With the kind of form Shaun Tait has shown, he must be dropped. Edwards is a much better bowler, who bowls nearly as fast as Tait but has far greater control, more so in death overs. A big reason for Tait being so expensive is due to the runs he gives away as extras. Other than that, if the wicket is a flatbed, as expected, Sanju Samson will keep his place. Dravid, Rahane, Hodge, Binny, Trivedi, Faulkner and Watson are automatic selections. Other two spots must go to Ashok Menaria and Sreesanth (if you need another fast bowler) or Harmeet Singh (if you want a genuine spinner in the side). So the side for me would be: Dravid, Rahane, Menaria, Watson, Hodge, Binny, Samson, Faulkner, Sreesanth/Harmeet, Trivedi and Fidel Edwards. I do not have much knowledge of KXIP, but I don't think they can tamper too much with their winning combination.

  • on May 9, 2013, 5:16 GMT

    Miller looks in prime touch and can kill any team. especially batting second. But, like i said before, Miller was looking primed to win a game single-handedly for KXIP for past couple of matches but somehow failed to cross the finish line. He finally crossed the finish line against RCB and law of averages might catch up with him. He might fail today. I hope Dravid wins the toss and RR fields first. That would be half the job done. RR's strength is batting, so save it for the last. RR should play an all pace attack like at Jaipur against KKR. Sreesanth and Edwards for Tambe and Tait. Bowl KXIP out for less than 140 and chase it down 16 overs. That'd boost the NRR.

  • Abitha on May 9, 2013, 10:40 GMT

    All the Veterans are playing and scoring Sachin Dravid Hussey. Make this your Day Gillie. A day to REMEMBERGood Luck Kashinath

  • TSJ07 on May 9, 2013, 10:35 GMT

    Its going to be a cracker of a game here in Mohali. Both teams would like to win to get boost to their chances of reaching in the last four. I'm supporting KXIP but Dravid is my hero and IMO No.1 cricketer from India (not God), a real team man and someone who could be role model for today's budding cricketers. I hope RR loses today only to win next all matches just like KXIP win all their next matches. Difficulot but not impossible.

  • Qa_ankit on May 9, 2013, 9:23 GMT

    Well my combination is bit different. I might surprise a bit but truly speaking i might be thinking like Dravid. I will not touch my opening pair for sure and with watson at 3. But i will bring one person till yet no body has talked or might have forgot. Parera. I am not a big fan of him as haven't seen him play but i feel he can come for this game. So my team with some little changes will be: Dravid, Rahane, Watty, Parera, Binny, Hodge, Samson, Faulkner, Trivedi, Sreesanth and one spinner. If not Parera, then would love to go for Edwards for sure. Bring some thing that can shock the other team. Else they can make plans and execute them.

  • Kashi0127 on May 9, 2013, 8:51 GMT

    Its going to be interesting tussle. Two teams I like most and like to see them in finals. I can bet Dravid will not panic like Kohli if there is a Miller onslought!

  • latecut_04 on May 9, 2013, 8:45 GMT

    As much as i like RR since we are at the business end of the tournament I do hope they overcome their shortcomings.Trivedi needs to be replaced.Shaun Tait may fire especially considering the match is at Mohali.(i asume its).Also from what i remember about Fidel Edwards he is too good to be warming the benches.not sure about his current from though.On the batting front RR struggled earlier when Watto failed to deliver.Dravid-Rahane have come to party in the last 2 matches but they were comparitively weaker bowling sides.Hope to see my dear Dravid's yet another victory..Halla Bol..Jeetega bhai jeetega...Rajasthan Jeetega!!!!

  • on May 9, 2013, 8:43 GMT

    KXIP will win... Chak de Punjab

  • Sunilcecil on May 9, 2013, 8:30 GMT

    Bring in azhar that will give bowling the sting that lacked in previous match! 190 runs should not have been scored!

  • SherjilIslam on May 9, 2013, 8:15 GMT

    @caught_knott_bowled_old on (May 9, 2013, 6:04 GMT):You are spot on. Rajasthan with the resources of Watson,Dravid,Rahane,Faulknera,Tait,Edwards cannot be called as underdogs.They had a very good mix. of local talents and they have a cool sets of options. The actual underdogs are KXIP. With very few quality resources,they are pushing themselves against all odds.See their line-up, i don't think any of the current player of their squad is a regular in their national team.

  • himanshu.team on May 9, 2013, 7:18 GMT

    With the kind of form Shaun Tait has shown, he must be dropped. Edwards is a much better bowler, who bowls nearly as fast as Tait but has far greater control, more so in death overs. A big reason for Tait being so expensive is due to the runs he gives away as extras. Other than that, if the wicket is a flatbed, as expected, Sanju Samson will keep his place. Dravid, Rahane, Hodge, Binny, Trivedi, Faulkner and Watson are automatic selections. Other two spots must go to Ashok Menaria and Sreesanth (if you need another fast bowler) or Harmeet Singh (if you want a genuine spinner in the side). So the side for me would be: Dravid, Rahane, Menaria, Watson, Hodge, Binny, Samson, Faulkner, Sreesanth/Harmeet, Trivedi and Fidel Edwards. I do not have much knowledge of KXIP, but I don't think they can tamper too much with their winning combination.

  • KanAloshFozter on May 9, 2013, 6:41 GMT

    In this match Miller and Mandeep hold the key for KXIP. Amidst all hues and cries about Miller,Mandy has been batting pretty well. I'd like to see him get a big score. RR is the likeliest to win because of Rahane,Dravid,Watto and Samson. Sreesanth in for Tambe

  • Siva_Bala75 on May 9, 2013, 6:41 GMT

    Gilly should play. also, Gony should be replaced by a batsman- Manan Vora or Valthaty who can also bowl a bit. I am sure Hussey+Valthaty+Sathish can bowl 4 overs. Dravid is the greatest but then Miller is the latest! Odds are in favour of KXIP if they chase.

  • SantoshKewat on May 9, 2013, 6:20 GMT

    Rajasthan are comfortably placed as one of the top four teams and they will be hoping to replicate that success in their away match against the upbeat Punjab team.

  • caught_knott_bowled_old on May 9, 2013, 6:04 GMT

    Guys, a T20 team with Dravid, Rahane, Watson, Hodge, Faulkner cannot be said to have 'limited resources'. This 'underdog' image of RR is all bogus. They're as strong as any of the top 5 teams. The team that is truly the underdog and punching above its weight is KXIP. But with Shaun Marsh and David Miller, they finally have some real fire-power that can give them a shot of making the Qualifiers. Looking forward to an exciting match. But as a neutral, I'm inclined to supporting KXIP because they're the underdog.

  • Pawan_fearless on May 9, 2013, 5:47 GMT

    RR will win.. Halla Bol.....

  • FAB_ALI on May 9, 2013, 5:28 GMT

    Best Possible RR team - Rahane, Dravid, Watson, Samson, Binny, Hodge, Faulkner, Cooper, Sreesanth, Trivedi & Chandila.

  • LovedFansofIndianCricket on May 9, 2013, 5:10 GMT

    Looking the form of David Millar, instead of Shun Tait please add Feidel Edwards in the Team. If RD team get Millar cheaply then match is in your hand.

  • Romenevans on May 9, 2013, 4:46 GMT

    To Dravid The Legend - No Tait, no matter what happens, even if you have to play an Indian bowler in replacement for him. I'd like Fidel Edwords in the team for Tait, but the thing is, i haven't seen him in their Dug out in all the matches, he is part of the team but is he even in India and part of RR at present?

  • Romenevans on May 9, 2013, 4:40 GMT

    If Rahul can hear me, please NO, yes i mean a big NO to Tait and Owais Shah. We RR need to win this and seal the 2nd place in the playoffs. Go RR! Halla BOL.

  • vijay.dravid on May 9, 2013, 4:31 GMT

    RR will win this match..each rr team member is their duty superbly and in t20 a game can be won even if 4-5members of the squad clicks. Rahul's super captaincy is amazing to watch.

  • on May 9, 2013, 4:12 GMT

    Its clear that the TOSS will play a vital role in today's match. the team chasing has a good chance of winning the contest coz the pitch is full of runs and the bowling unit of both the teams are not that strong. Even a score of more than 180 will be chase down easily. Its a contest between hodge+watson vs Marsh+ miller.

  • Venkiviru on May 9, 2013, 3:59 GMT

    rr should win....Halla Bol !!

  • .......junk on May 9, 2013, 3:54 GMT

    would love to see shaun and luke winning it for punjab.both the teams have weak bowling and a good batting , one who bats second will win it what ever be the target so punjab strenghthen your batting with luke mash david and miller these 4 can win you the rest of the matches , ironically , dont know why i feel miller catch drop by virat similar to steven waugh's catch dropped by gibbs ..oh boy did virat drop the cup??

  • Narbavi on May 9, 2013, 3:25 GMT

    I would like to see both teams in the play offs, but tough for kings 11, they would have won the mumbai game had the umpire did his part correctly, anyway, RR will start slight favourites for this game, i expect Edwards to play instead of Tait and probably Chandila might come in

  • on May 9, 2013, 3:14 GMT

    This is one of the games, where I am officially confused on who to support. I love watching these two teams play at all times. Main reason being, these are the two teams who have really encouraged & shown a lot of faith in their youth. When you watch these teams play, even if they play against the team you support, you still want them to do well for some reason. They have really created an aura around them in which you love to watch and support them. The two seniors of the teams, Gilli &Dravid are also a massive cause of this. Both have them through out their careers & even after retirement have been some of the most lovable cricketers in history. In my opinion, these two should be mentors for their respective national sides to show the youth the keys of being not only a great cricketer but also a future role model. I know Gilli has not been in the best of form but would really like to see him and Dravid go for the toss today. I know for a fact, I am not going to miss a single delivery

  • on May 9, 2013, 3:04 GMT

    Kings XI should bring back azhar mahmood in place of naser and Chawla should be replaced by Bhatt as chawla is of no use his economy rate is very high as compared to other spinners in team.Miller should bat at no3

  • Yasin123Patel on May 9, 2013, 2:46 GMT

    well, i know RR hasn't a great away record. But don't forget that mohali pitch is similar kind of that in jaipur. Little bit of grass and nice carry. So there is almost no difference in pitch. Both are good batting wicket with little bit of help for bowlers too. Interesting contest. I hope RR win this one to cement their place in playoff. Couple changes needed. Edwards/badree for tait. Sree should include if badree play. Hope watto able to bowl considering minor injury in previous match. Also hope for fit binny.

  • on May 9, 2013, 2:07 GMT

    I really think RR/PUNJAB/RCB/MUMBAI they all are very good at their home,so i would go with Punjab in this match.Both teams are having compitataive side but its my pridicticion,who will bat second will win

  • Nike_007 on May 9, 2013, 2:02 GMT

    Considering the nature of Mohali Pitch I would suggest Edwards on the place of Tait. And no other change Dravid, Please. RR needs to win it because the upcoming games are against top teams.

    Kings XI are highly dependent upon Miller & Marsh and that's the difference between RR and KXIP. RR batting order is much more stronger than KXIP and bowling also looks better than opponent.

    I am hoping a Royal show today.

  • on May 9, 2013, 0:08 GMT

    Shaun Tait looked rusty in the last game. I think Sreeshant was not playing too badly in the games he played. I think he is better option than Shaun Tait and he could be a wicket taking option bowling overs between 7-15. The other option is Fidel Edwards if match fit. Trivedi and Shaun Tait could be replaced with Sreesanth and Fidel Edwards. I would even prefer Owais Shah over Brad Hodge. I also think a left-arm spinner would be useful, so Ankit Chavan or Harmeet Singh instead of Tambe. I am afraid, one of these games Trivedi might go for plenty. Bowling attack consisting of Faulkner, Watson, Binny, Sreesanth, Chavan, Edwards looks powerful.

  • coldcoffee123 on May 8, 2013, 21:31 GMT

    If Gilchrist is reading this, he must play all the remaining matches. He is a match winner. The guy can score a century in 50 balls. So what if he failed in the first few matches. Gilly was rusty, not having played any cricket recently. But now he should be fine. He just needs to spend more time in the middle rather than go nuts from ball one. He should curb himself and just try to hit ground strokes for a few balls and then decide to go in air. Cmon Gilly, show the opposition what you did to Sri Lanka in 2007 WC final.

  • on May 8, 2013, 21:17 GMT

    Kings xi win today...caz they hv also solid bowling linup

  • SurlyCynic on May 8, 2013, 20:26 GMT

    KXIP should win this easy :) Once again hoping for a blistering innings from Miller, Marsh needs to fire soon.

  • rao1995 on May 8, 2013, 19:46 GMT

    RR should easily win this easy :) Once again hoping a 100 run stand btw Dravid-Rahane with both getting half centuries and watto finishing off in style :) Hope Faulker gets a couple of wickets and there are chances of Samuel Badree / Owais Shah coming in for Kevon Cooper / Shaun Tait ...... ALL THE BEST RR <3

  • on May 8, 2013, 19:42 GMT

    I would really love to see Punjab have the last laugh here. Even though I'm huge admirer of Rahul Dravid, just to make the tournament more interesting I would bid on Punjab today. Kings XI ought to win this one, considering the position they are in and what more, they are playing in their home ground and we could expect a good game against a formidable RR. Lets not forget, the Royals don't have a great away game record and are also amidst a very busy week (4 games in 8 days), and are bound to have a misstep today. On the other hand, with the momentum from their inspiring win against a strong RCB, and their Urge to be in contention for the tournament and favouring home conditions, Kings XI are the Favorites for this one.

  • on May 8, 2013, 19:42 GMT

    I would really love to see Punjab have the last laugh here. Even though I'm huge admirer of Rahul Dravid, just to make the tournament more interesting I would bid on Punjab today. Kings XI ought to win this one, considering the position they are in and what more, they are playing in their home ground and we could expect a good game against a formidable RR. Lets not forget, the Royals don't have a great away game record and are also amidst a very busy week (4 games in 8 days), and are bound to have a misstep today. On the other hand, with the momentum from their inspiring win against a strong RCB, and their Urge to be in contention for the tournament and favouring home conditions, Kings XI are the Favorites for this one.

  • rao1995 on May 8, 2013, 19:46 GMT

    RR should easily win this easy :) Once again hoping a 100 run stand btw Dravid-Rahane with both getting half centuries and watto finishing off in style :) Hope Faulker gets a couple of wickets and there are chances of Samuel Badree / Owais Shah coming in for Kevon Cooper / Shaun Tait ...... ALL THE BEST RR <3

  • SurlyCynic on May 8, 2013, 20:26 GMT

    KXIP should win this easy :) Once again hoping for a blistering innings from Miller, Marsh needs to fire soon.

  • on May 8, 2013, 21:17 GMT

    Kings xi win today...caz they hv also solid bowling linup

  • coldcoffee123 on May 8, 2013, 21:31 GMT

    If Gilchrist is reading this, he must play all the remaining matches. He is a match winner. The guy can score a century in 50 balls. So what if he failed in the first few matches. Gilly was rusty, not having played any cricket recently. But now he should be fine. He just needs to spend more time in the middle rather than go nuts from ball one. He should curb himself and just try to hit ground strokes for a few balls and then decide to go in air. Cmon Gilly, show the opposition what you did to Sri Lanka in 2007 WC final.

  • on May 9, 2013, 0:08 GMT

    Shaun Tait looked rusty in the last game. I think Sreeshant was not playing too badly in the games he played. I think he is better option than Shaun Tait and he could be a wicket taking option bowling overs between 7-15. The other option is Fidel Edwards if match fit. Trivedi and Shaun Tait could be replaced with Sreesanth and Fidel Edwards. I would even prefer Owais Shah over Brad Hodge. I also think a left-arm spinner would be useful, so Ankit Chavan or Harmeet Singh instead of Tambe. I am afraid, one of these games Trivedi might go for plenty. Bowling attack consisting of Faulkner, Watson, Binny, Sreesanth, Chavan, Edwards looks powerful.

  • Nike_007 on May 9, 2013, 2:02 GMT

    Considering the nature of Mohali Pitch I would suggest Edwards on the place of Tait. And no other change Dravid, Please. RR needs to win it because the upcoming games are against top teams.

    Kings XI are highly dependent upon Miller & Marsh and that's the difference between RR and KXIP. RR batting order is much more stronger than KXIP and bowling also looks better than opponent.

    I am hoping a Royal show today.

  • on May 9, 2013, 2:07 GMT

    I really think RR/PUNJAB/RCB/MUMBAI they all are very good at their home,so i would go with Punjab in this match.Both teams are having compitataive side but its my pridicticion,who will bat second will win

  • Yasin123Patel on May 9, 2013, 2:46 GMT

    well, i know RR hasn't a great away record. But don't forget that mohali pitch is similar kind of that in jaipur. Little bit of grass and nice carry. So there is almost no difference in pitch. Both are good batting wicket with little bit of help for bowlers too. Interesting contest. I hope RR win this one to cement their place in playoff. Couple changes needed. Edwards/badree for tait. Sree should include if badree play. Hope watto able to bowl considering minor injury in previous match. Also hope for fit binny.

  • on May 9, 2013, 3:04 GMT

    Kings XI should bring back azhar mahmood in place of naser and Chawla should be replaced by Bhatt as chawla is of no use his economy rate is very high as compared to other spinners in team.Miller should bat at no3