The 2008 IPL Champions are back in the main fold after an absence of a couple of years. Rajasthan will be aiming to bring their glory days back with a decent season this year.
They retained only a single player and that was Steven Smith, who will also lead them this season in the IPL.
They went with the auction with an amount of 67.5 crore, of which 65.85 has been spent on 22 players.
There most expensive buy has been the most expensive player this season, Ben Stokes. The Royals acquired his signing for a whopping INR 12.5 crore. Also they broke the bank for Indian pacer Jaidev Unadkat, for whom they paid 11.5 crore and made him the most expensive Indian player. They used the RTM card to buy back Ajinkya Rahane, and Jos Butler has been a terrific signing for them with just a mere bounty of INR 4.4 crore.
Stokes will be wearing Rajasthan colours this year
Jofra Archer, D’Arcy Short have been their other overseas recruits, the Royals also paid 6.2 crore for Krishnappa Gowtham whose pay rose from a base price of 20 lakhs.
Steve Smith (Captain), Ben Stokes, Jaydev Unadkat, Sanju Samson, Jofra Archer, Krishnappa Gowtham, Jos Buttler, Rahul Tripathi, D’Arcy Short, Ajinkya Rahane, Dhawal Kulkarni, Zahir Khan, Ben Laughlin, Stuart Binny, Dushmantha Chameera, Anureet Singh, Aryaman Vikram Birla, Midhun S, Shreyas Gopal, Prashant Chopra, Jatin Saxena, Ankit Sharma, Mahipal Lomror.
The squad this year has some decent individual players, a good batting unit and a pretty fine pace attack. The pitches in Jaipur haven’t ever been that fast so that has been a strange selection by the franchise. But this team lack in the spin department quite vividly, as they lack a quality spinner in the entire squad. Shreyas Gopal and Gowtham may well be their spinning options but that is pretty mediocre compared to other teams.
D’Arcy Short can be a real gem for Royals
But the side have a good all round back bone as Ben Stokes, Stuart Binny and Gowtham will provide the batting and bowling simultaneously. Ajinkya Rahane at the top of the order wil give the stability that their innings will require and the others will bat around him. Apart from the spinning area, the squad they have is quite capable to go the distance and they also have Shane Warne back as mentor this season. With Warne back in the helm and these sets of players, another recap of 2008 is what the Royals fans will be hoping for.