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IPL 2024: Dhawan ruled out as RR elect to bowl first against Punjab Kings

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Mullanpur, April 13 (IANS) Punjab Kings' skipper Shikhar Dhawan has been ruled out of their clash against Rajasthan Royals as captain Sanju Samson won the toss and elected to bowl first in a crucial Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 clash at the Maharaja Yadavindra Singh International Cricket Stadium here on Saturday.

The good news for ninth-placed PBKS in their third game of IPL 2024 is that the big-hitting Liam Livingstone is back, while Atharva Taide comes in for Dhawan, who has a niggle. “We would have bowled first as well, but we'll now have to put the runs on the board.”

“The balance has been good, we'd have liked to win a few more games, but the middle-order looks good, especially Shashank and Ashutosh. We've got exciting players and plenty of quality,” said stand-in captain Sam Curran, which is surprising considering Jitesh Sharma is the designated vice-captain.

Currently, at the top of the table, RR skipper Sanju Samson said opener Jos Buttler and off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin are having niggles, and will miss out on Saturday’s clash. In place of the two, West Indies big-hitter Rovman Powell and Mumbai’s off-spin all-rounder Tanush Kotian come into the playing eleven.

“We'll bowl first, it looks like a decent wicket to bowl first. We've made a target to not think about the goal, focus on the process, work on building the team and we're doing well. A lot of challenges outside as well, we've many players missing from tonight's game,” he said.

The pitch for Saturday’s clash is the one which was used for Punjab Kings’ clash against Delhi Capitals in an afternoon match on March 23. The last five IPL matches between these two teams have all gone into the last over, producing unforgettable finishes in the tournament.

Playing XIs

Punjab Kings: Atharva Taide, Jonny Bairstow, Prabhsimran Singh, Sam Curran (captain), Liam Livingstone, Shashank Singh, Jitesh Sharma (wk), Harpreet Brar, Harshal Patel, Kagiso Rabada and Arshdeep Singh

Substitutes: Rahul Chahar, Ashutosh Sharma, Vidwath Kaverappa, Harpreet Bhatia and Nathan Ellis

Rajasthan Royals: Sanju Samson (c/wk), Riyan Parag, Rovman Powell, Shimron Hetmyer, Dhruv Jurel, Tanush Kotian, Trent Boult, Keshav Maharaj, Avesh Khan, Kuldeep Sen and Yuzvendra Chahal

Substitutes: Yashasvi Jaiswal, Tom Kohler-Cadmore, Shubham Dubey, Navdeep Saini and Abid Mushtaq

--IANS

nr/bsk/


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