Task cut out for Warne’s Royals
The Shane Warne-led Rajasthan Royals will have their task cut out when they host Kings XI Punjab at the Sawai Man Singh Stadium in the DLF Indian Premier League on Monday.
Both teams have lost their respective opening matches, but the pressure is more on Warne & Co. Batting remains the main concern for Rajasthan Royals.
South Africans Graeme Smith and Morne Morkel and Pakistan players Younis Khan, Sohail Tanveer and Kamran Akmal will not be here for the match.
The Pakistani players are expected arrive on Tuesday after their Twenty20 match against Bangladesh.
It was inept batting which led to Rajasthan Royals’ disaster against Delhi DareDevils in their opening match on Saturday.
Shane Watson could not build on his start and Darren Lehmann looked a bit rusty.
Tanveer Kohli, Yousuf Pathan and Mohammed Kaif also failed to make any im- pression. Ravindra Jadeja and Dinesh Salunkhe, however, managed to impress in the lost battle.
Against DareDevils, Rajasthan Royals were restricted to 129 for 8 in 20 overs and their bowlers could not dent the formidable batting line-up of Virender Sehwag & Co, who marched to the nine-wicket win.
Warne scored 14 and bowled 2.1 overs but later reasoned that he was keeping himself for slog overs if the match had gone to dista- nce.
Yuvraj Singh’s Kings XI also went down to Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s Chennai Super Kings, but the former at least fought gamely.
Their top order, including James Hopes, Kumar Sangakkara, Yuvraj and Simon Katich, were among runs, while the presence of Brett Lee, Sreesanth, Irfan Pathan and Piyush Chawla will surely pose a problem or two to the Rajasthan Royals’ batsmen.