Coming on the back of three consecutive losses, the fate of SRH is hanging by a thread and David Warner will need to marshal his troops effectively against RR. For Smith and co, the last game win should help them enter the match with confidence as finally explosive Buttler is back in form.
Sunrisers Hyderabad - L L L W L
Having lost their last three games on a trot, suddenly Sunrisers Hyderabad's campaign has been jeopardized. After six games, they had won and lost three games each, but they have failed to catch the bus after that. Their batting has not been able to click as they the franchise would have liked and despite decent performances from David Warner and Jonny Bairstow, the fact that they haven't been as explosive like last year, it has exposed their middle-order. Bowling wise as well, barring Rashid Khan, they look weak with Natarajan, leaking 40 or more in last two games. Their pace bowling looks toothless, to say the least.
Rajasthan Royals - W L L W L
The IPL has reached a point now when every game has become paramount especially for sides like RR, who completely lost their momentum after winning first two games of the season. They did win against SRH last time but after that lost out against DC and RCB, failing to carry forward the winning run. But after their last game win against they should be fairly confident and need to win few games, if they have to stand a chance to win the tournament. Good form of Steven Smith and Jos Buttler is a great boost, but the likes of Stokes and Samson, also need to join the party while their leg-spinners will again be key alongside Jofra Archer.
Sunrisers Hyderabad - David Warner
Last time, when David Warner batted against Rajasthan Royals, he narrowly missed his fifty but since then he has been batting well and looks in decent if not explosive touch. He nearly helped SRH cross the line against KKR but it wasn't meant to be, but he will look to turn around his team's fortunes this time around against Rajasthan Royals, who were quite stoked and riled up Warner after they won a thriller. The Aussie left-hander is averaging over 40 this season and would look to continue his good form.
Rajasthan Royals - Jos Buttler
After blasting a wonderful 70 in the last game against CSK and helping RR to an incredible win on a difficult pitch, Buttler will again be in the spotlight when the two sides lock horns in Dubai on Thursday. After failing to score freely against RCB in the middle-order, the English gloveman looked settled in his new No.5 position after having opened for the franchise. He launched a counter-attack in the last game and will again look to unsettle an inexperienced SRH bowling line-up with only Rashid Khan being the lone threat.
Sunrisers Hyderabad - Rashid Khan
SRH bowling unit has looked depleted in the absence of seasoned Bhuvneshwar Kumar but Afghanistan spinner Rashid Khan is waging a lone battle for his side and has emerged as the stand-out bowler, so far. He has taken 11 wickets in nine games and has an excellent economy rate of 5.53. He is going to pose a major threat to RR's middle-order especially the likes of Jos Buttler and Steven Smith and will be the bowler to look out for.
Rajasthan Royals - Jofra Archer
With 13 wickets in 10 matches, Jofra Archer has again impressed one and all with his versatile bowling tricks that have made the batsmen dance to his tunes. Be it in the powerplay overs or the death or as an enforcer in the middle-overs at times, there is nothing that this maverick pacer can't do. His economy rate of 6.76 is all the more exceptional when we think of the pressure he faces in a relatively weak pace bowling line-up for RR.
RR:Robin Uthappa, Ben Stokes, Steven Smith, Jos Buttler, Sanju Samson, Riyan Parag, Rahul Tewatia, Shreyas Gopal, Jofra Archer, Kartik Tyagi, Ankit Rajpoot/Varun Aaron.
Venue: Dubai International Cricket Stadium, Dubai
When to Watch: Oct 22, 7:30 PM IST
Where to Watch: Star Sports Network and Hotstar (in India)