Rahul Dravid’s team are looking increasingly more like the team to beat.
Following victory over Chennai Super Kings on Sunday there is a strong case to argue that Rajasthan Royals are the most likely team to lift the IPL trophy in 2013.
The big money surrounding franchises such as Chennai, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Mumbai Indians always made it likely that they would be challenging for the play-offs, but it the supposedly lowlier Rajasthan that look like the team to beat.
CSK still hold the top position in the IPL with a better net run rate than the Royals, but Rahul Dravid’s side are in the best form, winning four successive matches.
Dravid’s influence on the side is attributed greatly to their success, as the veteran Indian is highly respected throughout the sport and offers supreme leadership on and off the pitch.
The 40-year-old has also offered some important knocks with the bat as the Rajasthan top order continue to show they can compete with the so-called specialist Twenty20 players.
Australian all-rounder Shane Watson is fourth in the Orange Cap standings for most IPL runs currently and he has been competently assisted by young opener Ajinkya Rahane at the middle.
Along with Watson, fellow all-rounder Stuart Binny has provided an able fall-back in the batting order whilst with the ball Kevon Cooper and James Faulkner have served out the damage.
Coupled with these performances has been the rise of teenager Sanju Samson, after Dravid saw enough in the youngster to play him in the competition.
The captain’s decision has paid dividends as the 18-year-old has proved time and time again that he has cricketing maturity beyond his years and a wonderful array of shots that he is prepared to unleash to even the most feared international bowler.
After an impressive season in 2013 it would be hard to argue that Rajasthan wouldn’t be worthy IPL winners.