Rajasthan v Chennai, IPL 2013, Jaipur

Second spot in Rajasthan's sights

The Preview by Kanishkaa Balachandran

May 11, 2013

Comments: 44 | Text size: A | A

Match facts

May 12, 2013
Start time 2000 (1430 GMT

Shane Watson hits through the off side, Kings XI Punjab v Rajasthan Royals, IPL, Mohali, May 9, 2013
Royals' top order has been hard to breach in the last three games © BCCI

Big Picture

It's ironic that even at this stage, not even one of the four playoff berths have been confirmed. It's easy to think that Chennai Super Kings, table leaders since April 28, have already made it to the playoffs, but mathematically, they haven't. Victory against Rajasthan Royals on Sunday will confirm their position in the final four. After Jaipur, they head back home to face the easiest of their three opponents , Delhi Daredevils, before heading to Bangalore. Both their away games are against teams that haven't lost at home. The prospect of Super Kings getting eliminated is highly improbable, given their consistency. They had a rude wake-up call against Mumbai Indians, but the manner in which they overpowered Sunrisers Hyderabad - another team with an unbeaten home record till that night - showed that they hadn't hit a late-season slump.

Royals will be aware that if there's one team that can challenge their fortress, it's Super Kings. Royals' remaining opponents aren't the easiest - Super Kings, Mumbai Indians (away), Sunrisers (away). However, given their recent form, it's hard to bet against them from qualifying either. Their last three wins - consecutive - have come while chasing. They will also be aware that Super Kings posted 223 in their last match, so if they end up bowling first, their bowlers will have to be at their best. Royals are third with 18 points and their aim will be to knock Mumbai off the second position.

Form guide

Rajasthan Royals WWWLW
Chennai Super Kings WLWWW

Players to watch

M Vijay missed a few games due to injury, and though he failed in his comeback game against Mumbai, scoring 2, he found his touch against Sunrisers. Though he didn't score big - he scored 29 - his three consecutive sixes against Ishant Sharma, all stand-and-deliver shots, showed that he was getting his groove back.

The Royals top order has been in sparkling form of late, with the team losing just eight wickets in the last three games. Their top three - Rahul Dravid, Ajinkya Rahane and Shane Watson - have aggregated 368 runs, with a total of five half-centuries. Super Kings' bowlers will be tested.

Stats and trivia

  • Super Kings have won two out of the three games they have played at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium
  • MS Dhoni has effected nine stumpings off R Ashwin, the best wicketkeeper-bowler combination in the IPL


"We need to bowl better in the death overs and giving away 87 runs in last five overs is not acceptable. We could not maintain the momentum in death overs. About 50-55 in last five is okay but not more than that."
Super Kings' fielding coach Steve Rixon

Kanishkaa Balachandran is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by GRVJPR on (May 12, 2013, 14:10 GMT)

As a citizen of jaipur I can tell you when there is a rain around here it's one of the most difficult pitch to bat in the country. CSK has no chance today. It's been raining, there will be plenty of movement and these flat wickets stars of CSK and MSD as a captain will be fully exposed. RR wins even before match begins.

Posted by   on (May 12, 2013, 10:33 GMT)

RR: 1. Dravid 2. Rahane 3. Sanju 4. Watson 5. Binny 6. Hodge 7. Baby 8. Faulkner 9. Harmeet 10. Sreesanth 11. Edwards.

Powerplay overs: Edwards,Faulkner,Watson. Middle overs: Sree,Binny,Harmeet and Baby.

Death overs: Edwards,Faulkner.

Go RR...Halla Bol!

Posted by anton_ego on (May 12, 2013, 9:57 GMT)

Probably the best match of the league stage. But as the law of averages tend to intervene, Royals must lose today. 5 half centuries means, Royals are bound to have an off day, except when Hodge gets a decent hit today. But as @cnksnk put, Jakati should get a game today since Royals are packed with right handers. Jaddu and Jakati could prove a good combination. But the pitch assists pacers more, so that will be a crucial decision for Dhoni. The contest am awaiting most is Vijay Vs Rahane. This could be the game for Rahane to give a slap on the selectors face if Viajy flops and Rahane succeeds.

Posted by   on (May 12, 2013, 9:49 GMT)

@ TeamRocker Both CSK (Hussey,Dhoni) and RR (Top3 batters) are as dependent on few players as other teams and which team has been ungraceful in defeat this IPL? Kindly point out. RR is not weak, its fans are flattering themselves by calling themselves underdogs.

Posted by Ali_86xz on (May 12, 2013, 9:18 GMT)

Two of the World's best legends. Two of the World's greatest cricketers. Two of the Cricket World's best and respected men - encounter tonight. That is of course - Sir Rahul Dravid and Sir MS Dhoni. They both are on the top of the Fair Play Award, and they both are on the top of the Points Table. This is going to be the the best encounter in the season of this IPL. It should be a tie!!!

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Tournament Results
Super Kings v Mum Indians at Kolkata - May 26, 2013
Mum Indians won by 23 runs
Mum Indians v Royals at Kolkata - May 24, 2013
Mum Indians won by 4 wickets (with 1 ball remaining)
Royals v Sunrisers at Delhi - May 22, 2013
Royals won by 4 wickets (with 4 balls remaining)
Super Kings v Mum Indians at Delhi - May 21, 2013
Super Kings won by 48 runs
Sunrisers v KKR at Hyderabad (Deccan) - May 19, 2013
Sunrisers won by 5 wickets (with 7 balls remaining)
Warriors v Daredevils at Pune - May 19, 2013
Warriors won by 38 runs
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