20 Mar 2019
IPL 2019: Rahane excited about Steve Smith's comeback
RR had managed to enter the play-offs last season after serving their two-year suspension. This term, they will get a shot in the arm by the presence of Australian star cricketer Steve Smith.
In the same light, Ajinkya Rahane praised Smith.
Smith arrived in Jaipur on Sunday for pre-season training
Smith missed last season after the BCCI followed Cricket Australia's sanction.
CA had imposed a 12-month ban on the cricketer alongside David Warner for their role in a ball-tampering scandal against South Africa.
Smith sees his ban come to an end on March 29.
He arrived in Jaipur on Sunday to join the training camp of Royals.
And the mood surrounding Smith is positive.
Smith's best IPL season came in 2017 for RPS
Smith had his best season in the 2017 edition of the IPL.
He scored a staggering 472 runs for Rising Pune Supergiant and led the side to the final.
The senior cricketer had amassed three fifties.
One will hope that Smith can emulate the performances this time as well.
He is likely to be available till April end for the Royals.
IPL 2019 is massive for Smith
The Australian selectors wanted both Smith and Warner to earn a comeback into the ODI line-up by producing substance in IPL 2019.
Therefore, this season will be massive for these two cricketers.
Smith's presence will bolster the Royals team, as they missed the overall balance last term.
Smith is likely to bat at number three and handle the responsibility of anchoring the innings.
'We all know his ability to win matches'
"It's good to have him back as a Rajasthan Royals player. He is a quality player and it's always good to have him in your team. Also to pick his mind will be very important. We all know his ability to win matches," said Rahane.
RR will look to derive the maximum from their stars
The focus for RR will be to get the maximum out if players such as Smith, Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes from the start. The three cricketers will not be available from May 1. The group stage ends on May 5.