Absence of Jos Buttler, Andrew Tye and Jofra Archer has been dearly felt by Rajasthan Royals, who have won just one of their three matches in the UAE leg. That sole victory also came due to a final-over meltdown by Punjab Kings batters, or they’d have been winless.
Their troubles mean they are now locked in a four-way battle for the final playoffs spot ahead of the business end of the season.
The Royals have also struggled to find their best combinations and batting order. Liam Livingstone has look a fish out of water in the middle order when he is a natural opener. While they’ve tried to make a middle-order batsman out of an opener, David Miller, an actual middle-order batsman, rots in the dugout.
Royal Challengers Bangalore
Royal Challengers Bangalore have also had their problems in the UAE leg. Like the Royals, they have also won just one of their three matches in the desert but are well placed to make the playoffs, thanks to their stellar work back in India.
Heavy defeat to Kolkata and then another to Chennai had the Bangalore faithful uneasy but a morale boosting win over defending champions Mumbai Indians has put their campaign back on track.
Glenn Maxwell was the star of their victory as his switch-hit-laden 56 off 37 helped Bangalore reach a decent 165 – a target their slow bowlers Yuzvendra Chahal, Maxwell and Harshal Patel defended successful as they took all but one Mumbai wicket.