Gujarat Lions (GL) will take on Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) at the Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium on Friday. GL skipper Suresh Raina will be looking for nothing but a win to turn the wheels of fortune in their favour. Gujarat Lions were thrashed in their first two matches by Kolkata Knight Riders and Sunrisers Hyderabad.

 

Raina has plenty of things to worry about. If they really want to win games from here on, he will have to take some tough calls while opting for his playing XI. He really needs to drop either of Aaron Finch or Dwayne Smith to make way for James Faulkner or Dwayne Bravo, rather both. Good news for them is that Ravindra Jadeja will be back in the playing XI and they will be a bolstered side. 

 

Rising Pune Supergiant, on the other hand, will also have to rework their team combination before they take the field against Gujarat Lions on Friday. Steve Smith will be back in the side and that would axe one of the foreign players, which could either be Faf du Plessis or Adam Zampa. 

 

The biggest worry for RPS is MS Dhoni is out of form and that is not a good sign at all. Dhoni needs to get back to his rhythm as soon as possible if RPS has to do well. Ajinkya Rahane also needs to fire at the top of the order. Although it has just been three matches but to gain momentum, consistency is important. 

 

Here are the likely XIs:

 

Gujarat Lions: Jason Roy, Brendon McCullum, Suresh Raina (c), Dwayne Bravo, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, James Faulkner, Praveen Kumar, Dhawal Kulkarni, Shivil Kaushik, Basil Thampi.

 

Rising Pune Supergiant: Faf du Plessis, Ajinkya Rahane, Steve Smith (C), Rahul Tripathi, Manoj Tiwary, Ben Stokes, Mahendra Singh Dhoni (wk), Rajat Bhatia, Deepak Chahar, Ashok Dinda, Imran Tahir.