At the halfway stage of the tournament, Delhi Capitals and Rajasthan Royals sit at different ends of the points table. Delhi, with 10 points from seven matches, are placed second while Rajasthan, who ended their losing streak in their last game courtesy a match-defining partnership between Riyan Parag and Rahul Tewatia, are still placed sixth and they are in desperate need to turn things around further. Parag and Tewatia aside, the return of Ben Stokes in RR’s last outing was a positive sign for the team and even though he didn’t fire with bat and ball, a world-class all-rounder like Stokes is expected to come good more often than not. Delhi, on the other hand, are hit by a spate of injuries that could affect their fortunes in the tournament
Shreyas Iyer: Captain Iyer has blown cold over the past few matches since his match-defining 88 not out against Kolkata Knight Riders in Sharjah three games ago. He hit a respectable 42 in the last match against Mumbai Indians, but could not stay till the end to give his team a good total. He would look to play the anchor especially in the absence of Rishabh Pant, who has been sidelined due to a hamstring injury.
Shikhar Dhawan: Dhawan had had an indifferent IPL until the last game when he batted through the innings to return 69 not out and help the team to 162/4. This was Dhawan’s first half-century of the season after middling returns of 5, 32, 26, 34, 35 and 0 in the last six matches. Delhi would hope the left-hander continues this run of form.
Kagiso Rabada: Rabada holds the Purple Cap with 17 wickets in seven matches and has been the go-to man for captain Iyer whenever the team has required a breakthrough. He has troubled batsmen with pace, variations and the ability to execute bouncers and yorkers with precision, and has emerged as the leader of the attack in the absence of Ishant Sharma.
Ben Stokes: Stokes was unimpressive on his return to the IPL but more can be expected out of the England all-rounder, considering his form with the bat and ball over the past year and a half. Stokes is equally adept against pace and spin and while he was asked to open the innings in his first IPL 2020 match, he could be better suited to the middle or lower middle order.
Jos Buttler: Buttler has shown moments of brilliance in the tournament thus far but hasn’t been able to play that one match-defining knock yet. His top score of 70 came in a losing cause against Mumbai Indians and other scores of 16, 13, 22, 21 and 4 have fell short of expectations. He would look to aim higher and give his team a much-needed win.
Rahul Tewatia: Following his remarkable 51 off 30 against Kings XI Punjab in Sharjah, Tewatia seemed to have blown cold with the bat but part of that was due to the extraordinarily difficult situations RR have often found themselves in. In the last match, though, with wickets in hand and target still in sight, Tewatia brought his ‘A’ game to the table and hammered an unbeaten 45 off 28, including a hat-trick of boundaries against the miserly Rashid Khan. Tewatia also has five wickets from seven matches thus far and is well-placed to add to that tally as well.
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