IPL 2013 Preview: Rajasthan Royals aim to bounce back against Sunrisers Hyderabad

Rajasthan Royals will be a tough side to beat in their home ground Sawai Mansingh Stadium, Jaipur © PTI

By Devarchit Varma
Jaipur: Apr 26, 2013
Rahul Dravid-led Rajasthan Royals will aim to get back on the winning track when they clash against Sunrisers Hyderabad in the 36th match of the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) 2013 tournament on Saturday.
While the Rajasthan side will be under pressure after their consecutive losses in the tournament, the Sunrisers will aim to make amends and stamp their authority over the wobbly Royals on their home ground.
Rajasthan can draw inspiration from their last win at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium, wherein they thrashed the Mumbai Indians by a huge margin of 87 runs. But after that comprehensive win, they were pummeled by Royal Challengers Bangalore and Chennai Super Kings in away games.
After their poor show with the bat against the Royal Challengers Bangalore, the Rajasthan batsmen got their act together in the next tie and put up a strong first innings total, which was achieved by the Super Kings without any hiccup. It was the bowlers who let them down and Dravid won’t like to have a repeat of the same.
Rajasthan will have to pull up their socks and all departments will have to pull together in the same direction in order to end their losing streak, as the tournament is fast approaching the business end.
Ajinkya Rahane, Shane Watson and James Faulkner will be the key players for the Rajasthan Royals, and the presence of S Sreesanth, Brad Hodge, Dravid and Stuart Binny strengthens their chances against Hyderabad.
With four wins and three loses in seven matches so far, Rajasthan Royals will hope that they turn around the fortunes and win more games to move up in the IPL 2013 points table.
On the other hand, third-placed Sunrisers Hyderabad would like to put behind their loss to Chennai and bounce back against the Royals. 
Hyderabad lost to the Chennai Super Kings despite putting up a strong total and they will have to be wary of the in-form Rajasthan batsmen such as Rahane, Hodge and Dravid.
Shikhar Dhawan’s return to the side has boosted their batting firepower, as the poor form of Parthiv Patel, Kumar Sangakkara, Cameron White and South African Quinton de Kock have hurt them in the initial matches.
Dale Steyn leads a potent bowling attack of Hyderabad, which consists of Ishant Sharma, Amit Mishra and Thisara Perera, and it won’t be unfair to say that the Sunrisers have depended more on their bowlers to win matches.
The return of Dhawan and the West Indies skipper Darren Sammy in their ranks has strengthened their firepower and the Rajasthan Royals will have to get their act together in order to prevail.
The Sunrisers have won five out of eight games in the tournament and they will be aiming to consolidate their position in the tournament.
While the bowlers have so far done the job for the Sunrisers, the Rajasthan Royals have produced mixed performances — both with ball and bat. Since both the teams are placed in the middle of the points table, it becomes a crucial encounter for them.
Rajasthan Royals (Probable) : Shane Watson, Ajinkya Rahane, Rahul Dravid(c), Brad Hodge, Stuart Binny, Dishant Yagnik(w), Kevon Cooper, James Faulkner, Ajit Chandila, Siddharth Trivedi, R Shukla.
Sunrisers Hyderabad (Probable): Shikhar Dhawan, Quinton de Kock (wk), Hanuma Vihari, Cameron White (c), Darren Sammy, Thalaivan Sargunam, Ashish Reddy, Karan Sharma, Amit Mishra, Dale Steyn, Ishant Sharma.

Time: 16.00 IST | 10.30 GMT
(Devarchit Varma is a cricket fanatic who finds nothing more exciting to do than to write, watch or talk about the sport. Having played the game at club and college level, he now pursues his passion as a scribe)