Are Rajasthan Royals too dependent on overseas players?

Tags: Indian T20 League 2020, Rajasthan XI

Published on: Sep 13, 2020

The Rajasthan Royals made a big statement after letting go of their captain and star batsman Ajinkya Rahane late last year. Rahane had been associated with them since 2011 and also captained them for one and a half years. Midway through the last season, he was sacked as the skipper and Steve Smith was given the reigns.

Much like their leadership, they have also decided to go foreign with their team’s core. They boast of overseas players like Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, Jofra Archer, Steve Smith, David Miller, and Tom Curran. So, their core mostly consists of players from England, and one can only imagine what will happen when English international schedule overlaps with the IPL, like it happens every year. This year, luckily they won’t miss their services for too long as the last match of Eng-Aus series is supposed to happen on the 16th of September.

Too much dependency on overseas players is never a good thing, and it’s a surprise that RR didn’t do much about it in this year’s auctions. They did buy Robin Uthappa, which was a smart move as he will be the only Indian player in the team with the distinction of playing in all the editions of IPL. It seems they were trying to replace Rahane with Uthappa as he also brings a calm and experienced head much like Rahane did. Although they still have decent Indian talent in Sanju Samson, Jaydev Unadkat and Manan Vohra, they still lack an Indian regular.

Last year, it was mostly Stokes and Buttler who contributed significantly in their team's success and when they left for national duty, RR’s hopes of making it to the playoffs also went with them. This somehow has always been their problem. In the initial few years of IPL, they were heavily reliant on the Aussie duo of Warne and Watson except for a few good performances from Yusuf Pathan and Ravindra Jadeja. Only during the 2012-13 time did they have Indian leadership in the form of Rahul Dravid and local talent like Sanju Samson, Pravin Tambe and Karun Nair came through.

As far as this year is concerned, they will be feeling quite relieved that their overseas pool will be available for most of the IPL and frankly it will be their best shot at the trophy for the last three years.

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