Rajasthan Royals vs Delhi Capitals: Preview and Prediction

Rajasthan Royals lost against Punjab Kings by five runs in their second game in IPL 2023

Rajasthan Royals take on struggling Delhi Capitals in the eleventh match of the Indian Premier League 2023 at Guwahati’s Barsapara Cricket Stadium on Saturday. 

What Have They Done So Far?

Rajasthan Royals lost their last game against Punjab Kings by five runs after starting the campaign with a solid 72-run win over Sunrisers Hyderabad. Delhi Capitals have lost their opening two games in the tournament and are looking unsettled under David Warner’s leadership this season.

Sanju Samson-led side is looking confident for another impressive season and they can overlook a narrow defeat against Punjab Kings. Shikhar Dhawan played a captain’s knock to put 197/4 while batting first as the Rajasthan Royals’ bowlers proved clueless on a batting-friendly surface at Barsapara. 

Despite some promising notes, the Royals made a big gamble of sending Ravichandran Ashwin to open the innings alongside Yashasvi Jaiswal. Ashwin was dismissed on a duck and an unnecessary tinkering with a batting order also affected Yashasvi and Buttler’s innings.

Samson added a crucial 42 off 25 knock after losing three early wickets in the powerplay overs. But Devdutt Padikkal’s 21 off 26 conceded pressure in the Royals’ chase in the death overs. Impact player substitute Dhruv Jurel and the Caribbean big-hitter Shimron Hetmyer led the charge in the death overs to drag the game to the wire. But they fell five runs short in their chase with Jurel smashing 32* off 15 on his debut for the Royals.

In bowling, KM Asif started again as a pace partner to Trent Boult but conceded 54 runs without any wickets. With Kuldeep Sen and Sandeep Sharma waiting on the bench, the former CSK pacer might struggle to feature in the playing XI against Delhi Capitals. 

Meanwhile, Delhi Capitals welcomed back Anrich Nortje to their playing XI against Gujarat Titans and also handed a debut to young wicket-keeper batter Abishek Porel. They fielded the same batting order but the result was the same for the Capitals. Warner started confidently but the likes of Prithvi Shaw and Mitchell Marsh failed again to contribute to a good start.

Sarfaraz Khan, who donned the wicketkeeping gloves in the first game, showed some promising skills but failed to maintain an attacking strike rate. He scored 30 off 34 with the help of just two fours despite playing the majority of Delhi’s innings. 

The Capitals lost Warner and Rilee Rossouw on the back-to-back deliveries, with the Australian top-scoring with 37 runs off 32 balls and the South African on a golden duck. But Axar Patel’s brave 36 off 22 and debutant Porel’s 20 off 11 helped the Capitals score a challenging total of 162/8. 

In early overs, the total seemed defendable with returning Nortje bowling out both Titans openers and impact player Khaleel Ahmed dismissing Hardik Pandya within powerplay overs. But lack of spin options hammered Delhi once again as the Titans players dominated the middle overs to ensure an early win. 

Kuldeep struggled for the wickets while Axar, surprisingly, didn’t get a chance to bowl. Marsh was impressive as the fifth-choice bowler with Chetan Sakaria missing out but Mukesh Kumar remained wicket-less for the second consecutive innings.

Head to Head Record

Both teams have faced each other 26 times in IPL history, with Rajasthan Royals and Delhi Capitals recording 13 wins each. Last season, Rajasthan won the first leg of this clash by 15 runs while defending 222 runs while Delhi triumphed in the second leg with a dominating eight-wicket win. Both teams have produced high-scoring next-to-neck clashes lately with Delhi winnings three of the last five encounters. 

Key Players

Jos Buttler (Rajasthan Royals): The English big-hitter came to bat in the number three position against Punjab Kings despite smashing a 20-ball fifty against Sunrisers Hyderabad while opening the innings in the first game this season. Butter registered record 863 runs to win the Orange Cap last season and has already scored 73 runs from the opening two matches this year.

Buttler also recorded four centuries last year, including a knock of 116 runs off 65 balls against Delhi Capitals.

Anrich Nortje (Delhi Capitals): The South African speedster proved his pace dominance against Gujarat Titans with two valuable wickets to keep the Capitals alive in the game. Nortje missed the first game due to his involvement with the national team but is looking in great rhythm ahead of the Rajasthan Royals game. 

Nortje dismissed Devdutt Padikkal and Sanju Samson when both teams last played each other and will be looking for a familiar impact in the upcoming game.

Predicted Playing XI

Rajasthan Royals: Jos Buttler, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Sanju Samson ©, Devdutt Padikkal, Riyan Parag, Shimron Hetmyer, Jason Holder, Ravichandran Ashwin, Trent Boult, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Sen

Delhi Capitals: David Warner ©, Prithvi Shaw, Mitchell Marsh, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Rovman Powell, Abishek Porel, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Anrich Nortje, Chetan Sakaria, Khaleel Ahmed


Rajasthan Royals play this game as a host at Guwahati’s Barsapara Cricket Stadium and considering their performances in the opening two games, they are favorites to clinch two points against Delhi Capitals. 

Warner and co are expected to produce an improved all-round performance in the hope of a maiden win this season but Samson’s Royals are looking well settled across every department ahead of this crucial clash.