Tough tussle on cards for Rajasthan Royals

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> An interesting battle is on cards when Shane Warne-led Rajasthan Royals meets Punjab Kings XI in Jaipur on Monday.

Updated: April 21, 2008 17:56 IST
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A keen tussle is on cards when Shane Warne-led Rajasthan Royals meets Punjab Kings XI in the Indian Premier League encounter at the Sawai Man Singh stadium in Jaipur on Monday.

Both teams have lost their opening matches and are desperate to open their account in the high-profile tournament.

Though Punjab lads fought gamely, their efforts proved to be insufficient against Chennai Super Kings.

On the other hand, Rajasthan Royals failed to put their act together and were largely done in by inept batting. They were restricted to 129 for 8 in 20 overs and their bowlers could not dent the formidable batting lineup of Delhi Daredevils, who marched to nine wicket facile win.

Warne had claimed that his team was well-balanced and had worked on a clever strategy but the burly tweaker was made to eat a humble pie last evening.

It was poor batting that weighed heavily against the Rajasthan Royals and adding salt to injury is the fact that the hosts would be compelled to take on the field on Monday
with more or less same set of players.

South Africans Graeme Smith and Morne Morkel and Pakistan players Younis Khan, Sohail Tanveer and Kamran Akmal will not be present for the match.

According to the owner of Jaipur Franchise, Manoj Badale Pakistani players are expected to arrive on Tuesday after their T20 match against Bangladesh.

The woes of the host team also lie with form of top players. Shane Watson could not build on his start and Darren Lehmann looked a bit rusty.

Taruvar Kohli, Yousuf Pathan and Mohammad Kaif also failed to make any impression. Ravindra Jadeja and Dinesh Salunkhe, however, managed to impress in the lost battle.

Warne scored 14 and bowled 2.1 overs but cited the reason that he was keeping himself for slog overs if the match went to distance.

Punjab Kings look better with their top batting order including James Hopes, Kumar Sangkara, Yuvraj Singh and Simon Katich, who were among runs, while the presence of veteran Brett Lee, S Sreesanth, Irfan Pathan and young Piyush Chawla gives variety to their attack.


Rajasthan Royals: Shane Warne (Capt), Aditya Angle, Swapnil Asnodkar, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammad Kaif, Kamran Akmal, Sumit Khatri, Taruwar Kohli, Justin Langer, Darren Lehmann, Dimitri Mascarenhas, Parag More, Morne Morkel, Pankaj Singh, Munaf Patel, Niraj Patel, Yusuf Pathan, Mahesh Rawat, Anup Revandkar, Dinesh Salunkhe, Jaydev Shah, Graeme Smith, Sohail Tanvir, Siddharth Trivedi, Shane Watson, Younis Khan.

Coach: Shane Warne

Kings XI Punjab: Yuvraj Singh (Capt), Karan Goel, James Hopes, Kumar Sangakkara, Simon Katich, Pankaj Dharmani, Irfan Pathan, Brett Lee, Piyush Chawla, Wilkin Mota, S Sreesanth, Ajitesh Argal, Rishi Dhawan, Mahela Jayawardene, Simon Katich, Uday Kaul, Sahil Kukreja, Shaun Marsh, Kyle Mills, Luke Pomersbach, Ramesh Powar, Nitin Saini, Ramnaresh Sarwan, Vikram Singh, Tanmaya Srivastava, Sunny Sohal.

Coach: Tom Moody.

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