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IPL 2021: 5 Players that Rajasthan Royals might target in the auctions

Rajasthan Royals (RR) have been one of the most under-achieving teams in the history of the Indian Premier League. The winners of the inaugural edition, Rajasthan Royals are yet to reach the finals again and have failed to make the top-four in the last few seasons. 

We look at some players the team might target this season. 

Players Released by Rajasthan Royals ahead of IPL 2021 Auction: Steve Smith, Ankit Rajpoot, Oshane Thomas, Akash Singh, Varun Aaron, Tom Curran, Anirudha Joshi, Shashank Singh, Robin Uthappa (traded)

Players Retained by Rajasthan Royals ahead of IPL 2021 Auction: Sanju Samson (C), Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer, Jos Buttler, Riyan Parag, Shreyas Gopal, Rahul Tewatia, Mahipal Lomror, Kartik Tyagi, Andrew Tye, Jaydev Unadkat, Mayank Markande, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Anuj Rawat, David Miller, Manan Vohra

IPL 2021 Auction Purse: 34.85 crore INR 

Slots to fill: 8 (including three overseas)

Also Read: IPL 2021: 5 Players that KKR might target in the auctions

Jhye Richardson: 

The Australian could be one of the much sought after bowlers in the upcoming IPL auctions, and is sure to interest the RR franchise as well. In IPL 2020, the team was let down by the lack of a reliable fast bowler who could accompany and build the pressure on the rivals along with Jofra Archer. Match-after-match, the Englishman started off well with early wickets, but the inability of the fast bowler at the other end to control his line and lengths led to the team’s downfall. 

Jhye has great pace and showed his skills in the tough overs in the recent Big Bash League, where he finished as the leading wicket taker with 27 scalps in 16 games at a strike rate of 12.7. He was in excellent form and played a huge role in his team’s run to the finals. Overall, Jhye has conceded runs at a rate of just 7.81 in his domestic T20 career, which makes him the ideal new ball partner to Archer. Teams with two overseas pacers have traditionally fared well in the IPL, and RR could well try out the tactic. 

Ben McDermott: 

The wicket-keeper is one of the best hitters in Australia, and he displayed the same in the recent Big Bash League as well where he scored over 400 runs in 12 games at a strike rate of nearing 140. The 26-year old has scored 1660 runs in 73 games in his career thus far at an average of over 31, which is evidence of his consistency and his skills. 

The RR team struggled with top-order batters in the last edition of the tournament after persistent failures by Steve Smith. The franchise was forced to open with Ben Stokes in the latter half of the IPL 2020, and though he struck a century at the top, he is better suited in the middle order. With Sanju Samson and Jos Buttler likely to open the innings, McDermott could be the ideal fit at either number three or four. With the team also trading Robin Uthappa, the side is on the look-out for a solid top-order player, and it would not be a bad move to go after McDermott in the upcoming auctions. 

Also Read: IPL 2021: Overseas players who could start a bidding war

Umesh Yadav: 

The fast bowler was released by RCB ahead of the 2021 auctions after a poor season where he leaked runs aplenty in the death overs. Umesh is not the most reliable bowler with the ball in the fag end of the innings, but he is an effective bowler with the new ball, which makes him a good choice for the RR team. If the cricketer can send down three overs with the new ball, the Royals can look to save Archer for the death overs, which has been an Achilles Heel for the team over the last few seasons. With Kartik Tyagi in the squad and Ben Stokes a handy pacer as well, the RR team will have plenty of options when it comes to fast bowlers in the side.

Umesh has picked up 119 wickets in 121 games, with his best performance coming in 2018, where he picked up 20 scalps in 14 games at a strike rate of just under 16. Then, RCB had used him effectively as a new ball bowler, and if RR can utilize him well, he could well pip Jaydev Unadkat for a place in the XI. 

Shivam Dube: 

The player was let off by RCB after an inconsistent season with the team in IPL 2020, and he could be more than an ideal fit at RR. Though Rahul Tewatia won the side a number of games last season, often, the all-rounder was left with a lot to do, especially with Ben Stokes absent for the first half of the tournament and young gun Riyan Parag proving to be inconsistent. The addition of Shivam Dube will ease a lot of pressure on Tewatia, whilst also allowing the top order to play with a lot more freedom. 

Though Dube has just played 15 IPL games with 4 wickets and 129 runs, he has tremendous skills and needs backing to realize his true potential. 

Chris Morris: 

The RR team is desperately in need of a fast bowler who can control the run-flow, and there is no better player than Chris Morris that the team can aim to buy in the upcoming auctions.  Genuine gun death overs bowlers, Morris is also more than a handy batsman, who could lend tremendous balance to the Royals set-up. The franchise could then afford to bowl Archer in the powerplay overs along with Kartik Tyagi, while keeping Morris for the death. 

He also strikes the ball at a rate of over nearing 158 in the IPL with the bat, and his batting skills could ease the pressure on the remaining batters.

Also Read: Five RCB Players to Watch Out for in IPL 2021


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