Wed, 21 Oct 2020

Dubai [UAE], September 21 (ANI): Rajasthan Royals skipper Steve Smith and his team is looking forward to putting on a good show in their opening match for the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) against Chennai Super Kings (CSK).

IPL began on September 19 with Mumbai Indians (MI) locking horns with CSK in the tournament opener.

CSK managed to defeat MI by five wickets while on Sunday, Delhi Capitals triumphed over Kings XI Punjab in the Super Over.

Rajasthan Royals will take on CSK on September 22 at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium.

"Yeah obviously missed the last three ODIs in England. Been in Dubai for a couple of days now with some good rest and then got into a bit of running. Yesterday I did a bit of zig-zag running, which is part of the protocols to pass to get back to play and today I'll have a hit in the nets. Hopefully, pull up well from the hit and be good to play tomorrow," Smith was quoted as saying, in the team's media release.

"The guys have been here for a month now, and from all reports, the training's been magnificent. It's been good to catch up with both the old and the new Royals, we're in a good place and have got an outstanding squad this year, really strong, and we're ready to get going. Chennai and Mumbai both have been two solid teams for a long time now. We obviously watched a bit of the game the other night, the Super Kings played really well to get over the line in the end. Hopefully, we can put on a good show and get our campaign off to a good start," he added.

Smith had missed the recently-concluded ODI series against England due to extended concussion and now the right-handed Aussie batsman would be determined to showcase his skills in the UAE.

Rajasthan head coach Andrew McDonald has also brushed aside rumours of Smith's absence from the first match of Royals due to an extended concussion.

"Fantastic news that Steve is available. It's fantastic especially on the back of some setbacks back in the UK. It's obviously great to have your skipper available for the first game as I've said before we are in really good hands. In terms of the rest of the squad, we couldn't be happier with their preparation. We've got what we needed, having been here nice and early to get our preparation going on the back of the long lay-off," McDonald said.

"We have got the bases covered and have some really good depth in the squad and really looking forward to seeing what it looks like in a real competitive match against CSK. They had a fantastic first game, they're one game into the tournament which is a slight advantage when you come out against the team that's already played and performed. So, we'll definitely have our work cut out and really looking forward to what our guys can bring to the table and we're really excited about what the journey presents," he added.

To give their fans a wholesome experience, Royals have also announced the launch of their new app, 'The Rajasthan Royals app'. The franchise aims to drive a strong message, through the app, that it's more than the game on TV so that the fans could enjoy a package of entertainment and information from the team.

The application will feature various aspects of the Rajasthan Royals franchise including cricket, players, content, gaming, merchandise, and some never seen before technology that brings fans closer to the action.

Speaking on the launch of the app, Rajasthan Royals' COO, Jake Lush McCrum said: "With the IPL occurring away from India this year, digital engagement is even more crucial to us as a franchise, and the launch of this app enables us to entertain and engage the millions of fans watching at home on TV, through their second screen. We are excited by both the innovative features included in the app and the integrated gamification." (ANI)

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