IPL 2018: Top 3 Players to Watch Out for on the Rajasthan Royals

Post the IPL 2018 auctions, the franchises have a new look to the team with many new faces coming up and some old veteran players to represent their local franchise. With the 11th edition of Indian Premier League to start off in April, team Circle of Cricket gets down to list the key players from Rajasthan Royals squad who can make a difference with their performance this year.

The team which won the inaugural edition of Indian Premier League under the captaincy of Shane Warne is making their way back after two years of suspension. From the start of the tournament, Rajasthan Royals are said to have unknown talent hidden in them. Royals of Rajasthan had a very decent IPL 2018 auction building their team around Steven Smith. Manoj Badale’s blue army will definitely have some firework this season with many match winners in the team.

Rajasthan will get full support from their fans as they have Sawai Mansingh Stadium, Jaipur as their home ground for the coming season.

Steven Smith

Smith who led Rising Pune Supergiant in the nail-biting finals of 2017 IPL against Mumbai Indians was retained by Rajasthan Royals for Rs 12 Crores. Steven Smith will prove to be very effective for the team at the top order as he was a part of the franchise before it got terminated for two years. Steven Smith leading a whole new Rajasthan Royals will be very valuable for the team with support coming from experienced Ajinkya Rahane who can bat up in the order and stimulate quick runs on the board.

Smith has more than 1700 runs in the tournament with an average of 37 plus Rajasthan will be heavily dependent on their captain.

Ben Stokes

Ben Stokes who was bought by Rajasthan as the most expensive player at IPL 2018 auction for Rs 12.5 Crore will have the liberty to free his arms in the middle over and take wickets at intervals with his bag full of different all-rounding skills.

The latter from England was one of the most valuable players in the previous edition of IPL with scoring 300 plus runs and taking 12 wickets in the tournament. Ben Stokes’s presence in Rajasthan Royals team will be very beneficiary for players like Stuart Binny and Jofra Archer who have the ability to single handily change the fortune of a game.

Rajasthan will be hoping for their star all-rounder player Ben Stokes to play every game for them.

Jaydev Unadkat

Unadkat who was the most expensive Indian player to be sold at IPL 2018 auction fetch a mind-boggling amount of Rs 11.5 Crore. The player from Saurashtra has been in a decent form in the recent past. Jayadev is a very skilful player for Rajasthan as he has performed well for RPS in the previous edition of IPL.

The left arm pacer has better IPL economy from most of the other known bowlers. He will be opening the bowling attack with Dhawal Kulkarni who was retained by the team using Right to Match card.

Unadkat is well known for his responsibilities and his wickets taking spirit. He becomes one of the contenders to grab Purple Cap at the end of the tournament.

The players listed above, form the core strength of the franchise and have the ability to win matches for the team. It will be great to see how each one of them performs under the mentorship of Shane Warne.

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Prospects of Newcastle in the 2007-2008 English Premier League

Without a doubt, the appointment of Sam Allarydce, Big Sam, as the new gaffer or manager for Newcastle for the 2007-2008 season had been greeted with cheers by the Toon Army. With his growing reputation of grooming of Bolton Wanderers that were challenging for Europe and giving the Big Four of Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester United, it is widely expected that Newcastle would finally challenge for Europe at least.

In the off season, Big Sam has radically transformed his Newcastle squad; making wholesale changes to his team and moulding it into his own image. Let take a closer view on the 2007-2008 squad below.

At the back, with Irish Number 1 Shay Given in goal, Newcastle is usually in safe hands. In front of him, there are the ever improving England U21 Steven Taylor and new recruit the Czech David Rozehnal, Newcastle has improved a previous weakness. Another indicator was the release of Craig Moore, Oliver Bernard, Alan O’brian and Titus Bramble from defence shows his determination to cut the dead wood from the team. Plus the transfer of or the addition of Geremi from Chelsea, Claudio Cacapa from Lyon, Jose Enrique from Villarreal and Habbib Beye from Marseille to the likes of Steve Carr, Peter Ramage and Celestine Babayaro , Big Sam has rebuilt up the defence and his options at the back.

As for midfield interestingly enough, Allardyce has allowed the likes of Kieran Dyer, Scott Parker and Nobby Solano to leave St James Park. These three players have been the main stay of previous Newcastle midfield. In came Joey Barton from Manchester City and Faye from Sam’s old club Bolton. Looking at it, it could be a wise move on Big Sam’s part as Dyer had his injuries, Solano is getting older in age and Parker may not be in his mould of a player. Furthermore, with exciting youngsters such James Milner and Charles N’Zogbia added with the experience of Nicky Butt, Emre and Damien Duff, Big Sam has a strong midfield to choose from for every match. Only concern is the addition of Barton may test his abilities to the fullest as he had been a problem player at City.

Up front, what more can be said of a front line of Micheal Owens, Mark Viduka from Boro, Alan Smith from Manchester United, Obafemi Martins and Shola Ameobi. A combination of youth and experience. The major concern of Allarydce would be the health of his strikers at his disposal especially Owen’s. Without a doubt, with Viduka and Ameobi, Sam may be trying to play a big-small combination up front if Owen is fit.

So far the performance have been encouraging though the recent defeat to Derby away is a wrong step down. Newcastle is current in 10th position, winning 2, drawing 2 and losing 1. At the moment, Newcastle is a team in transition as Big Sam is still moulding his teams to his ideals and playing styles. It can be strongly concluded once the team is consolidated to the playing style of Big Sam and gotten used to each other, performance should improve.

It can safely be concluded that Newcastle should be strongly challenging for a European Spot come end May 2008 with the current team and Big Sam’s abilities.

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The History of Blackburn Rovers FC

The though behind Blackburn Rovers Football Club came from a gentleman named John Lewis who was born 1855 in Market Drayton. The gifts he brought to football began in his days as a player and later he came to be known as one of the best referees in the country, presiding over several FA Cup finals.

November the 5th, 1875, saw Lewis and other gentlemen, notably Author Constantine arrange a meeting at the Leger Hotel in Blackburn where they discussed and concluded that they would establish a Football Club with the title Blackburn Rovers. The city already had a strong association with the game with existing clubs such as Blackburn Park Road FC and Blackburn Olympic FC. Their games were initially played at a place called Church in Lancashire as they had no ground of their own. This changed in mid 1877 when the club leased farmland at Oozehead close to Preston New Road.

This new ground itself was simplistic with its make shift turf and wooden planks to cover the heavy water logged; almost a small pool, in the centre of the playing field but it did generate a small income for the club with the ability to be able to charge a fee for the pleasure of been a spectator. Later Rovers leased a more suitable ground from the East Lancashire Cricket Club. Their debut match at Alexandra Meadows was played against Partick Thistle which they won 2-1 partially thanks to the football gifts of Richard Birtwistle who scored both goals for Rovers.

Blackburn Rovers first entry to the FA Cup came in November 1879 and got to off to a great start when they beat Tyne Football Club 5-1 in their opening game. Later in the 3rd round they received a humiliating defeat at the hands of Nottingham Forrest losing 6-0. During these times Rovers had out-grew their present ground and certainly were the largest club in the area. With this they did seek a larger venue and settled on one in Leamington Street which they altered and refurbished to make way for extra seating needed to cope with the current demand on visitors to their games.

One that nearly made it in the history books for Blackburn Rovers FC came in 1882 when they reached the final of the FA Cup and were up against the Old Etonians. However, the football gifts of the Etonians proved just a little too strong and Rovers lost 1-0. The following year the club were in no such form and only managed the 2nd round before being knocked out by Darwen 1-0 and to rub salt in the wound local rivals Blackburn Olympic went on to win the FA Cup.

Under new manager Thomas Mitchell they were victorious the season after when the beat Queens Park FC in the final 2-1 and again the following year beating the same club 2-0. And in fine form they once more won the FA Cup the next year this time beating West Bromwich Albion and in doing so were awarded a Silver Shield from the FA for their treble success. Blackburn’s form did see a dip from the previous years and were subsequently knocked out of the FA Cup in the 2nd round by Renton the year after but they did win it again 1890 when the gifts of William Townley scored 3 and Rovers went on to crush Sheffield Wednesday 6-1 and also 1890/91 season with a 3-1 win over Notts County FC, bringing Rovers FA Cup tally to a staggering five. During this time Blackburn purchased Ewood Park and spent, in respect of today a massive £1000 on extras and alterations.

After WW2 Rovers time in Division 1 came to end and for the next decade the club remained in Division 2 until making their way back to Division 1 in 1958. The silverware that they had been accustomed to in the early part of the century no longer existed, however they did regularly finish mid table. 1960, with the gifts of Scotsman Dally Duncan in charge they once again came close to another FA Cup trophy but were denied it in the final by Wolverhampton Wanderers losing 3-0. The 1970’s were not really a good period in the history pages for Rovers, spending the majority of the time between Division 2 and 3.

Their turn around in fortunes came when a Mr Jack Walker took control of Rovers in 1990. Walker had made his millions in the steel industry that he inherited from his family. His biggest pay day came when British Steel paid him £360 million for his company in 1990. The manager of Blackburn at the time, Don Mackay was sacked when Walker persuaded the football gifts of Kenny Dalglish to come out of retirement and manage the club. Dalglish soon made new signings and improvements started to take shape and were becoming apparent as Rovers climbed the table.

At one stage they were the only clear winners of Division 2 but it ended slightly different as they had a disastrous losing run and only just managed to grab a play off place. Meeting Leicester in the final at Wembley they booked their place in the new Premiership League, beating Leicester 1-0. It had been 25 years since Blackburn Rovers FC had played in the top flight of English football.

Their largest pay out for a player that broke all English Football records at the time came when they brought the 22 year old gifts of Alan Shearer from Southampton in 1992. Other quality signings were made like Chelsea’s Graeme Le Saux and striker Kevin Gallacher from Coventry. The club enjoyed a fantastic Premiership season in 1993/94 when they managed to finish the table in 2nd place behind Manchester United. Their record transfer fee in 1992 would also be broken this season when they paid £5 million for striker Chris Sutton from Norwich City.

1994/95 season saw Rovers in close rivalry with Manchester United for the Premiership title. It was neck and neck towards the end of season and having lost to Liverpool the club thought United had taken the title but they only managed a 1-1 draw with West Ham which made Rovers Premiership Champions. Later Dalglish would become Director of Football for the club and Alan Shearer had proved he was worth every penny that Blackburn had paid for him by scoring over 30 goals in 3 consecutive seasons, a record in itself. In 1996 the football gifts of Shearer was sold to Newcastle United for a world record transfer fee of £15 million.

The good times for Rovers were soon becoming the bad times when they ended the 1998/99 bottom of the tables and found themselves in Division 1. Jack Walker sadly died in 2000 at the age of 71 and in remembrance a statue was placed at Ewood Park. Blackburn Rovers FC is still owned by the family. They did achieve promotion back to the Premiership in the 2000/01 season and dedicated it to the late Jack Walker.

The 2004/05 saw Mark Hughes take the managers post at Blackburn Rovers and with it a more secure solid club. Hughes signed gifts such as Aaron Mokoena and Newcastle United’s Craig Bellamy and steered Rovers to a 6th place finish in the 2005/06. In addition the club earned a place in the UEFA Cup the following year.

Hughes left for Manchester City in May 2008 giving Paul Ince a short spell in the job. With poor results and 11 games on the bounce without a win he was sacked on December 16th and to be replaced by Sam Allardyce on a 3 year contract. Blackburn Rovers FC still currently play in the Premiership.

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Short Biography of Famous Soccer Player – Oliver Kahn

His full name is Oliver Rolf Kahn. He was born June 15, 1969 in Karlsruhe, Germany. He was a German soccer player and played the position of the goalkeeper for Bayern Munich. From 1988 until 1994, Kahn played for Karlsruher. He has played 86 games for the Germany national team. His nicknames are «King Kahn» or «the titan».

Kahn begun his career at Karlsruher SC and in 1994 was transferred to Bayern Munich, his last professional club. He’s a modern goalkeeper, that manages his defenders splendidly and he also has the power of character to make himself heard and esteemed by his teammates, which is a surprising achievement considering he’s playing together with world class superstars at Bayern Munich and the German national team.

He is one of the most triumphant and famous soccer players of German in latest history, having won eight German championships, six German cups, the UEFA Cup in 1996, the UEFA Champions League and the Intercontinental Cup, both in 2001.

His personal contributions have received him four consecutive UEFA Best European Goalkeeper awards, three IFFHS World’s Best Goalkeeper of the Year awards. He is regarded to be one of the greatest goalkeepers of the all time and is the only goalkeeper in the history of football to win the FIFA World Cup Golden Ball (in World Cup 2002).

At 38 years of age, the majority players, even goalkeepers, make a decision to hang up their soccer boots, but not Oliver Kahn. For all we know, we might as well observe Oliver Kahn play for Germany in yet another World Cup in 2010.

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