The Rajasthan Royals were one of the few teams who were focused on building a strong first-choice playing 11 first, and then focusing on the backups. While they had retained a solid trip of Sanju Samson, Yashasvi Jaiswal, and Jos Buttler, the RR management led by Kumar Sangakkara made some strong buys at the Auction.
From the squad standpoint, Rajasthan Royals have done a commendable job. The starting 11 looks good with the likes of Shimron Hetmyer, Yuzvendra Chahal, Trent Boult, Ravichandran Ashwin, and Devdutt Padikkal. The only area the team may have some challenges is the all-rounder portion. Other than that, there’s plenty of firepower in the line-up.
Meanwhile, the Royals will be continuing their journey under the potent leadership of Sanju Samson, who only last year was promoted as the Captain. Not only he is the leader of the squad but he is also the most expensive player on the line-up. Having impressed as a captain batter last year, stakes would be high on Sanju Samson.
So, with the kind of squad RR has assembled, let’s look at the best predicted playing 11 for Rajasthan Royals for IPL 2022? Before that, let’s also look at the complete squad of Rajasthan Royals. Also, please note, the playing 11 is selected keeping 4-5 batters, minimum 2 all-rounders, 1 wicket-keeper, and minimum 3 pacers in mind.
IPL 2022 Final Squad for Rajasthan Royals (RR)
Batters and WKs: Devdutt Padikkal, Karun Nair, Rassie Van der Dussen, Riyan Parag, Shimron Hetmyer, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Dhruv Jurel (WK), Jos Buttler (WK) & Sanju Samson (C&WK)
All-rounders: Anunay Singh, Daryl Mitchell, James Neesham, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Ravichandran Ashwin & Shubham Gharwal
Bowlers: Kuldeep Sen, Kuldip Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Obed McCoy, Prasidh Krishna, Trent Boult, KC Kariappa, Tejas Baroka & Yuzvendra Chahal
Top-order: Jos Buttler, Yashasvi Jaswal & Devdutt Padikkal
Even before the Auction had started, Rajasthan Royals had their opening pair well settled. The fire and ice combination of Jos Buttler and Yashasvi Jaiswal, which was also retained ahead of the Auction would continue to open for the team. The same combination did decently well for RR in 2021, so 2022 should be equal or better in terms of performance.
In addition, the team also got a solid young opener in the form of Devdutt Padikkal, but the former RCBian should continue to play at 3 as mentioned by RR management post the Auction. With Jos Buttler at the top, the other two lefties may feel less burdened, and that can allow them to play their natural game.
Middle-order: Sanju Samson & Shimron Hetmyer
The middle-order for Rajasthan Royals should see captain Sanju Samson playing at 4, followed by aggressive Shimron Hetmyer. Sanju will have to demote himself to accommodate Padikkal, but he wouldn’t mind that for the team’s cause. Meanwhile, Shimron Hetmyer at 5 adds good firepower in the lower middle-order.
Finisher All-rounders: James Neesham & Ravichandran Ashwin
The top 5 batters seem settled for Rajasthan Royals, but the finisher all-rounders may be a cause of concern for them. They don’t have many good all-rounders, and that can cause a few issues for the team. If they play Ashwin at 7 with Neesham at 6, their lower-order becomes thin. If they play Riyan Parag at 6 with Neesham at 7, they are expecting 4 bowlers from Neesham, which could also be an issue.
Overall, Neesham as batting all-rounder at 6 and Ashwin as bowling all-rounder may be their strongest combination to go ahead. While the batting may still be slightly feeble, the bowling would be more strong, and that is what should be their priority. This would also mean, more responsibility on Sanju Samson’s shoulders in the batting.
Bowlers: Navdeep Saini, Trent Boult, Prasidh Krishna & Yuzvendra Chahal
Bowling for Rajasthan Royals has the right mix of youth and experience. While Trent Boult, Yuzvendra Chahal, and Ravichandran Ashwin form for an experienced pair in the bowling, Prasidh Krishna and Navdeep Saini are fresh blood for them. For pace-friendly pitches, the combination can work wonders with almost 16 overs of potential pace.
Strongest Predicted Playing 11 for Rajasthan Royals for IPL 2022:
Jos Buttler, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Devdutt Padikkal, Sanju Samson (C&WK), Shimron Hetmyer, James Neesham, Ravichandran Ashwin, Navdeep Saini, Trent Boult, Prasidh Krishna & Yuzvendra Chahal
So, that completes the best predicted playing 11 for Rajasthan Royals for IPL 2022. Overall, Rajasthan Royals have 8-9 confirmed players in the starting 11. Their combination would depend on the gap they would want to address in the playing 11. Meanwhile, barring the above-mentioned best playing 11, Rajasthan Royals can also look at the following combinations.
Other Playing 11 Options for Rajasthan Royals:
- Riyan Parag / Karun Nair for James Neesham and Nathan Coulter-Nile for Navdeep Saini
- KC Cariappa for Navdeep Saini for spin-friendly pitches
- Riyan Parag in place of Navdeep Saini at 6 with James Neesham at 7 and Ravichandran Ashwin at 8.