Rajasthan Royals (Hindi: राजस्थान रॉयल्स) is a cricket franchise representing pink city Jaipur in the Indian Premier League. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced in September 2007 the establishment of the Indian Premier League, a Twenty20 competition to be started in 2008. In January 2008, the BCCI unveiled the owners of eight city-based franchises. The team is one of the eight founding members of the IPL in 2008. The Jaipur franchise was sold to the Emerging Media for $67 million, making it the least expensive team in the league. There is also no Icon Player in the team. It is currently captained by the Australian all rounder Shane Watson and coached by Paddy Upton. They won first edition of IPL under the captaincy of former Australian spinner Shane Warne.
The highlight of this franchise, is the way they promote all sorts of players despite their age and experience. You can be 18 or you can be 40. If the team thinks you can do the job for them, you get a shot. Ravindra Jadeja was a teenage star back in 2008 like Sanju Samson is a teenage star today. Pravin Tambe isn’t the only bowler in his 40s to turn his arm over for the franchise either. Former Australia international Brad Hogg might have significantly more impressive credentials than Tambe, but it wasn’t like other franchises were queuing up at his door begging him to sign on the dotted line. And Tambe repaid team’s faith when he took hat-trick in 2 legal deliveries.
The Rajasthan Royals franchise is owned and chaired by Manoj Badale. Other investors include Ryan Tkalcevic, Lachlan Murdoch, Aditya S Chellaram, Shilpa Shetty and Suresh Chellaram. The Group acquired the franchise for $67million. Incidentally, this was the least expensive franchise in the Indian Premier League and probably the least fancied team in the league at the beginning of the tournament. Bollywood actress and Celebrity Big Brother winner Shilpa Shetty and her business partner (now husband) Raj Kundra paid approximately US $15.4 million for an 11.7% stake before the start of IPL 2 in early 2009, therefore valuing the team at $132 million. It made a pre-tax profit of $7.5 million in 2009.
Rajasthan Royals home venue is the iconic Sawai Mansingh Stadium(Hindi: सवाई मानसिंह स्टेडियम).The Stadium is a cricket stadium in Jaipur, Rajasthan, India. It was built during the reign of Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II who was also known as SMS, hence the name of the SMS Stadium. It is situated at one corner of the Rambagh Circle. The stadium seats 30,000 and is one of the best in India, after the 2006 renovation. But in IPL7 Sardar Patel Stadium, Ahmedabad will host the Rajasthan Royals matches.
Team anthem and mascot
The team’s mascot is a lion named Moochu.
The team anthem is ‘Halla Bol’. In the first IPL season the song was sung by Ila Arun.While in second season, it was sung by huudiya.
2008 IPL season
Prior to the start of the inaugural IPL season, many considered the Royals as possibly the weakest team in the IPL, giving them little chance of competing well in the tournament.Evidence of the latter opinion seemed to be confirmed when the team lost its first match against the Delhi Daredevils in a 9 wicket loss. The fears were confirmed that the team was likely to struggle, but who would have ever though that this was the beginning of a new dawn for the team? But this team believed in writing their own script and there was something about their style of cricket, perhaps the simple attitude with which they approached the game. This simplicity was bought about largely by Warne’s captaincy, as he never had the fear to lose and was always calm in dealing with his players and pressure situations.
2009 IPL season
The Royals came into the tournament in South Africa as the defending champions, but not one of the favourites since Sohail Tanvir was ineligible to play for the team due to the ban imposed by the BCCI on Pakistani players playing in the competition. As well as the fact that Shane Watson, their star player last time around was unavailable for the whole season as Australia featured in an ODI series against Pakistan in the UAE. Without these two, the team looked slightly weaker than the previous season and players such as the countryman Graeme Smith, fiery pacer Shaun Tait and the aging ‘Fuhrer’ Shane Warne had to be relied on. Rajasthan Royals ended 6th out of the 8 teams in the competition, winning 6 matches out of the 14 they played.
2010 IPL season
The Royals were back in India after their average outing in South Africa. This time they seemed to be a better outfit as they were to play in conditions which should have suited them the most. But they had to suffer an unfortunate start to the competition, with a narrow 4 run defeat to the Mumbai Indians at the Brabourne Stadium in Mumbai. The highlight of this match though, was Yusuf Pathan hitting the fastest ever hundred in IPL history, off only 37 balls! Even some of the Mumbai fans were disappointed not to see Rajasthan win, by the end of it all. Consequently, they failed to make it to the playoffs for the second consecutive season as they finished 7th out of the 8 teams in the competition, winning 6 games out of 14 played.
2011 IPL season
The Rajasthan Royals, and the Kings XI Punjab were temporarily ejected from the league due to issues with their unreported ownership changes. The teams were reinstated with involvement from the High Court. Their owners were broken into several legal entities when the BCCI required the incorporation of the companies. Kochi was also at risk of ejection for the same reasons before BCCI cleared their new ownership pattern for the tournament.
Rajasthan were dismissed from the competition since they ended at the 6th position out of the 10 teams in the tournament, having again won 6 out of their 14 matches played, with one being a no result.
2012 IPL season
Rajasthan Royals finished in seventh place among the point table in season 5 of IPL winning only seven matches out of sixteen.
2013 IPL season
Rajasthan Royals qualified for the playoff stage by finishing third in the group stage, thus grabbing a spot in Champions League 2013. They won against Sunrisers Hyderabad in the eliminator but lost to Mumbai Indians in the second qualifier, which led to their exit from the tournament.Shane Watson was declared the Man of the tournament.
2014 IPL season
Rajasthan Royals retained five players – Sanju Samson, Ajinkya Rahane, Shane Watson, James Faulkner and Stuart Binny – for the seventh season of the IPL. Rajasthan Royals scored 65 runs off the last 17 balls at a strike rate of 382.35 to win the match against RCB. Shane Watson will lead the side in IPL season 7 and Rahul Dravid will play the role of a mentor.