Two wicketkeeper-batsmen, KL Rahul and Sanju Samson, will aim to begin the season on a winning note while leading Punjab and Rajasthan respectively. Punjab is blessed with plenty of game-changers, including Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, Chris Gayle and Nicholas Pooran. But, the list doesn’t stop there as PBKS has added teeth to the batting unit with the acquisition of Dawid Malan and Shahrukh Khan.
Mohammed Shami will lead the bowling attack, which has been bolstered by the signing of Australian speedsters Jhye Richardson and Riley Meredith. Leggies Ravi Bishnoi and Murugan Ashwin are expected to form the spin-bowling combination.
PBKS has a number of match-winners in its squad, but will have to get the combination right against Rajasthan that is heavily reliant on its overseas stars. All-rounders Ben Stokes and Chris Morris, who was bought for a whopping Rs 16.25 crore at the auction, will look to make the difference. Having made the switch from Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), Shivam Dube will be keen to do the same.
Jos Buttler, Yashasvi Jaiswal and Samson could make up the top of the batting order, while leggies Rahul Tewatia and Shreyas Gopal are likely to be the first-choice spinners. In the absence of ace fast bowler Jofra Archer, Rajasthan may pick one between Andrew Tye and Mustafizur Rahman to assist the Indian pacers.