Rajasthan Royals host Pune Warriors in the second of two Indian Premier League (IPL) games scheduled for Sunday. The Royals remain in contention for a place in the knock-out stages and are favourites to beat the Warriors in this game. The team from Pune can still, mathematically, make the next round but it would require an almighty collapse from every other side above them.
Where to Watch
Play starts at 3.30pm BST. Catch highlights on ITV 4 and ITV 4 HD at 9pm BST. Follow the match live, via text updates, on ESPN Cricinfo.
The Royals have regained a lot of their big-team aura under captain Rahul Dravid. The Indian batting legend, who retired from international duties last year, has led from the front and the 2008 champions have six wins from 10 games.
However, the side owned in part by glamorous Bollywood diva Shilpa Shetty come into this game after a poor defeat to defending champions Kolkata Knight Riders. The game, played in Kolkata, was dominated by Gautam Gambhir's men, who turned in an excellent performance with the ball to restrict Shane Watson and co to 132/6; spinners SachithraSenanayake and Sunil Narine and seamer Rajat Bhatia finished with 4/67 from their 12 overs.
And Kolkata's big guns, so often accused of inconsistency, delivered with the bat as well, with veteran South African all-rounder Jacques Kallis and Indian Yusuf Pathan scoring an unbeaten 33 and 49 respectively for a match-winning third wicket partnership of 78.
Meanwhile, Pune continue to struggle to make an impression on the IPL. And based on present form and position, the team from the state of Maharashtra are unlikely to change that record this year. They have only two wins from 11 games so far - although one of those was a shock win over Chennai Super Kings - and come into this game after a 17-run defeat to Royal Challengers Bangalore in their last game.
To be fair to Robin Uthappa's side, a number of key players have struggled for form. But with big hitters like Aaron Finch, Yuvraj Singh, Steven Smith and Angelo Mathews, they should do better. Finch failed to get going against Bangalore, as did Singh and Smith. The captain and Sri Lankan all-rounder Mathews were the only ones who showed resistance to Bangalore's bowlers, with the former hitting 75 off 45 balls. It was all too little though, with Murali Kartik picking up 2/29 for Bangalore.
Earlier, a strong and quick batting performance from Bangalore's top order - Saurabh Tiwary and South African AB de Villiers hit half-centuries while Chris Gayle and Virat Kohli provided hurricane-like interludes - allowed them to post 187/3.
- Last Five(most recent first): L W W L L
- Last Match: Kolkata Knight Riders beat Rajasthan Royals by eight wickets
- Last Five(most recent first): L L L L L
- Last Match: Pune Warriors lost to Royal Challengers Bangalore by 17 runs