Saurashtra, the reigning Ranji Trophy Champions, are set to compete in the Irani Cup against the Rest of India. This marks Saurashtra’s second appearance in the Irani Cup, and they aim to secure their first title. Meanwhile, the Rest of India is looking to make it three consecutive wins in this prestigious competition.
Saurashtra Preview Jaydev Unadkat leads a formidable side that has performed well as a unit in recent Ranji Trophy seasons. Unadkat understands the challenges posed by the strong Rest of India team and expects a solid performance from his players.
Harvik Desai and Jay Gohil are expected to establish a strong opening partnership, while the addition of Cheteshwar Pujara provides a significant advantage. In the middle order, Sheldon Jackson and Arpit Vasavada will look to build partnerships, while Prerak Mankad and Chetan Sakariya are reliable finishers.
In the bowling department, Jaydev Unadkat and Chetan Sakariya will lead the attack with the new ball, aiming to secure early breakthroughs. Dharmendrasinh Jadeja and Prerak Mankad, who troubled batsmen in the Ranji Trophy, will play crucial roles. However, Saurashtra’s bowling lacks depth, and they will rely on Parth Bhut to deliver a strong performance.
Saurashtra Predicted Playing XI: Jaydev Unadkat (c), Harvik Desai (wk), Jay Gohil, Cheteshwar Pujara, Vishvaraj Jadeja, Sheldon Jackson, Arpit Vasavada, Chetan Sakariya, Prerak Mankad, Dharmendrasinh Jadeja, Parth Bhut
Rest of India Preview Under the leadership of Hanuma Vihari, Rest of India seeks to secure another trophy after their victory earlier this year. Most of the players in the squad were part of the team that defeated Saurashtra previously, which gives them confidence in this match. Vihari expects a strong performance from his players to secure a third consecutive title.
Mayank Agarwal, the top run-scorer in this year’s Ranji Trophy with 990 runs, will aim to provide a solid start alongside Rohan Kunnummal. The middle order boasts the likes of Sarfaraz Khan, Yash Dull, and Sai Sudarshan, who will be expected to contribute runs. Srikar Bharat, Shams Mulani, Saurabh Kumar, and Vihari complete a potent batting lineup.
The Rest of India’s bowling attack features in-form bowlers Navdeep Saini and Akash Deep, who will aim to make early breakthroughs and put Saurashtra under pressure. Shams Mulani, with a remarkable season behind him, will look to bowl effective spells alongside Saurabh Kumar. Vihari will also play a vital role with the ball.
Rest of India Predicted Playing XI: Hanuma Vihari (c), Mayank Agarwal, Srikar Bharat (wk), Rohan Kunnummal, Sarfaraz Khan, Sai Sudarshan, Shams Mulani, Akash Deep, Yash Dull, Navdeep Saini, Saurabh Kumar
PITCH AND WEATHER CONDITIONS
Weather Conditions Expect warm and dry weather throughout the match in Rajkot. The pitch is likely to be flat, offering good batting conditions in the initial days. Batsmen will find it comfortable to play their strokes. However, as the match progresses, the pitch is expected to assist spinners more, particularly on the last two days. Therefore, the team batting first should aim to post a total of around 400 runs in the first innings.
Venue Details The Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Rajkot typically provides a flat surface where batsmen have enjoyed success in the past. Spinners tend to perform well on this dry surface, extracting sharp turn. Fast bowlers usually find it challenging to get assistance from the track.
Toss: To Bat Given the batting-friendly conditions on the first two days, the team winning the toss is likely to opt to bat first. However, from Day 3 onward, spinners are expected to come into play and make it difficult for batsmen to score freely.
SAUR vs ROI Winning Prediction Saurashtra aims to overcome their previous loss in the Irani Cup against the Rest of India. However, their bowling attack lacks depth, which could be a concern. Rest of India boasts a well-balanced team with a strong batting lineup, giving them an advantage in this contest.
Prediction: Rest of India to win
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