Chances look very grim for Rajasthan as Chennai have been in great form this season.
It’s battle royale as Rajasthan Royals host Chennai Super Kings in match 43 of Indian Premier League (IPL) at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium, Jaipur, on Friday. It’s a must-win match for Rajasthan if they want to stay afloat for the playoffs.
Both the teams come into this match after winning their previous games. The Royals registered a 15-run win over Punjab in the last match despite KL Rahul’s unbeaten 95. RR rode on Jos Buttler’s impressive 82 to reach 158/8 after which the bowlers displayed a clinical bowling effort to restrict Punjab to 143/7.
On the other hand, the Super Kings outclassed Royal Challengers Bangalore by 6 wickets in their previous outing. Helped by superb spells from Ravindra Jadeja and Harbhajan Singh, CSK stifled RCB for 127/9 before a whirlwind knock of 31 off 23 from MS Dhoni helped them reach the target in 18 overs.
Timing – 8 pm
Venue – Sawai Mansingh Stadium
Where to watch – Star Sports 1 and Star Sports 1 HD
Head to head
With a 12-6 win-loss record, Chennai clearly hold the edge over Rajasthan.
Ish Sodhi has played only two games so far this season for RR. With an impressive performance in the last match, he is expected retain his place. Dhruv Shorey debuted for CSK in the last game. Despite an unimpressive start, he should keep his spot in the playing XI.
Prediction: who will win?
Chances look very grim for Rajasthan as Chennai have been really dominant this season. In their last five matches also, Chennai have been the more consistent side winning four times. With current form, team combination and consistency, CSK look favourites to win this one.
According to oddschecker.com, the odds are placed at 16/13 for Rajasthan and 8/11 for Chennai.
Sawai Mansingh Stadium Pitch Report
In the last match between Rajasthan and Punjab, the Jaipur pitch turned out to be a slow turner. Shot-making won’t be easy on this pitch and spinners will play the key role.
Moneycontrol Dream 11: Shane Watson, Jos Buttler, Ambati Rayudu, Sanju Samson, MS Dhoni (wk), Dwayne Bravo, Ravindra Jadeja, Ish Sodhi, Harbhajan Singh, Lungi Ngidi, David Willey
Players to watch out for
MS Dhoni (CSK) – Captain Cool has been in dream form this season. With six unbeaten knocks so far, he is averaging 90 in IPL 2018. Expect him to fire at the ground where he hit his highest ODI score of 183*.
Jos Buttler (RR) – With a 58-ball 82, Buttler helped RR win their last match against Punjab. He has been firing at the top of the order and Rajasthan would be looking for another flying start from him.
Points TableWith only four wins from their ten games, Rajasthan are struggling with 8 points on the sixth spot. A loss here would end their season early but a win would keep them in contention for the playoffs, provided they win all their remaining matches. On the other hand, CSK are almost certain to qualify for the playoffs. With 14 points from their ten games, they would try to end in the top two.