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IPL 2018: All eyes on Rahane and Williamson

New Delhi: Sunrisers Hyderabad will open their Vivo IPL 2018 campaign when they take on the returning Rajasthan Royals in Match 4 today.

Rajasthan Royals make a return to the IPL after two years with a trip to Hyderabad to face the 2016 IPL winners. Rajasthan Royals has a good bunch of players with Rahane, Buttler, Stokes, Stuart Binny, Jaydev Unadkat and Sanju Samson in their ranks.

Ben Stokes was in the thick of things in his maiden stint in the IPL last season; he scored 316 runs (including a century & a half-century), took 12 wickets & clung on to 5 catches.

RR had to reorganise their plans last minute because their first-choice captain Steve Smith too was banned by the BCCI. RR spent liberally and signed up some exciting talent, including the English all-rounder Ben Stokes, the wicketkeeper-batsman Jos Buttler and Heinrich Klaasen.

Sunrisers Hyderabad lost their top scorer, David Warner, while the Royals lost the Australian captain, Steve Smith, just before the start of the tournament.

SRH would bank upon their strong batting line up that includes new captain Williamson, Shikhar Dhawan, Yusuf Pathan, Manish Pandey, Carlos Brathwaite, Deepak Hooda and Shakib Al Hasan.

Shikhar Dhawan has been in excellent form so far this year, and he will be expected to shoulder the additional responsibility to make up for the absence of David Warner.

In the SRH line-up, Bhuvneshwar Kumar – the Purple Cap winner in the last two IPL seasons, and Rashid Khan are the ones likely to cause most damage with the ball.

Team Head to Head

Overall: Matches – 7, Sunrisers Hyderabad won – 3, Rajasthan Royals won – 4

Team:

Sunrisers Hyderabad: Kane Williamson (C ), Shikhar Dhawan, Manish Pandey, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Wriddhiman Saha, Siddharth Kaul, Deepak Hooda, Khaleel Ahmed, Sandeep Sharma, Yusuf Pathan, Shreevats Goswami, Ricky Bhui, Basil Thampi, T Natarajan, Sachin Baby, Bipul Sharma, Mehdi Hasan, Tanmay Agarwal, Alex Hales, Carlos Brathwaite, Rashid Khan, Shakib Al Hasan, Mohammad Nabi, Chris Jordan and Billy Stanlake.

Rajasthan Royals: Ajinkya Rahane (C ), Ankit Sharma, Sanju Samson, Ben Stokes, Dhawal Kulkarni, Jofra Archer, D’Arcy Short, Dushmantha Chameera, Stuart Binny, Shreyas Gopal, S Midhun, Jaydev Unadkat, Ben Laughlin, Prashant Chopra, Krishnappa Gowtham, Mahipal Lomror, Jatin Saxena, Anureet Singh, Aryaman Birla, Jos Buttler, Heinrich Klaasen, Zahir Khan and Rahul Tripathi.

Siddharth Raghvendra Raghuvanshi

By Siddharth Raghvendra Raghuvanshi

Editorial Assistant of Sirf News with experience in covering sports and entertainment for Navbharat Times and Network 18's IBN Lokmat