IPL 2020: RR vs KXIP playing 11 prediction and preview

IPL 2020: RR vs KXIP playing 11 prediction and preview

Jos Buttler has finished his mandatory quarantine and is available for selection. That is the biggest news for the Rajasthan Royals (RR) as they clash with Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) on Sunday. Buttler would walk right into the squad at his preferred position of an opener.

Both teams are coming to the game after wins, owing to a couple of brilliant knocks. While Sanju Samson’s 32-ball 74 helped Rajasthan to a victory over Chennai Super Kings, the Royal Challengers seemed to have no answers for KL Rahul’s 69-ball 132 either.

RR, who walked into their last game without Buttler, their best batsman from the last season, still managed to score 216. And with Buttler returning to the fray, the batting order would be further strengthened. 

With the small boundaries, Sharjah is already a nightmare for bowlers, add to that the power hitters on both sides, the RR vs KXIP encounter is slated to be a high scoring one. Even in the last game at Sharjah, as many as 33 sixes and 18 boundaries were hit, the joint highest ever in an IPL game ever.

Buttler’s march back in squad would mean that David Miller will have to open up a slot for him. With him at the top and Steven Smith at three, Rajasthan Royals might have to demote Sanju Samson further down the order and use him as finisher, owing to his power hitting capabilities and RR’s lack of a proper finisher. However, Smith might demote himself to number four and give Samson the opportunity to score big. It is a decision that will depend on the situation of the game.

KL Rahul would be tempted to include Chris Gayle in the squad because of the short boundaries as well as the IPL veteran’s record against leg spinners. RR’s spinners in Rahul Tewatia and Shreyas Gopal did a brilliant job against CSK, something their captain would want them to repeat. If KL Rahul chooses to play the Universe Boss, Nicolas Pooran would have to make way from him and Mayank Agarwal would be demoted to open up a slot at the top. Nicolas Pooran has had a run of two poor games, managing scores of 0, 0(super over) and 17.

KXIP’s bowling attack looks settled with every one of Mohammad Shami, Ravi Bishnoi and Murugan Ashwin being amongst the wickets.

Likely XI:

KXIP: KL Rahul (c/w), Chris Gayle, Mayank Agarwal, Karun Nair, Sarfaraz Khan, Glenn Maxwell, Jimmy Neesham, Murugan Ashwin, Sheldon Cottrell, Ravi Bishnoi, Mohammed Shami

RR: Yashasvi Jaiswal, Jos Buttler, Sanju Samson (wk), Steve Smith (c), Robin Uthappa, Rahul Tewatia, Tom Curran, Riyan Parag, Shreyas Gopal, Jofra Archer, Jaydev Unadkat

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