Cricket Sports

Brilliant Archer fails to prevent Royals fifth defeat

Jofra Archer’s brilliance went in vain as Rajasthan Royals were let down by their batsmen to slump to a 13-run defeat to Delhi Capitals in the Indian Premier League on Wednesday.

The Barbados-born England fast-bowling star snatched three for 19 from four excellent overs, a spell which helped restrict Delhi to 161 for six off their 20 overs.

But Royals then failed to mount a successful run chase at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium, slumping to 148 for eight from their allotted overs, to lose for the fifth time in eight games and remain one from bottom of the eight-team standings on six points.

After opting to bat first, Delhi were set back off the first ball of the innings when the slippery Archer got Prithvi Shaw to play on to one which came back off the seam.

And they were 10 for two in the third over when Archer struck in the third over, having new batsman Ajinkya Rahane caught at mid-on for two.

Opener Shikhar Dhawan then top-scored with 57 from 33 balls and captain Shreyas Iyer struck 53 from 43 deliveries, in an 85-run third wicket stand to revive the innings.

When Dhawan perished in the 12th over, Iyer put on a further 37 for the fourth wicket with Marcus Stoinis (18) before falling at the end of the 16th over.

Archer got his third wicket at the end of the penultimate over when Stoinis bungled a hook and was caught at mid-wicket.

The 25-year-old Archer is the franchise’s leading wicket-taker this season with 12 scalps at an average of 17 apiece.

In reply, Archer’s England teammate, Ben Stokes, smashed 41 from 35 balls while Robin Uthappa chipped in with 32 off 27 deliveries, but Royals never managed to find momentum.

Stokes put on 46 for the third wicket with Sanju Samson (25) to propel Royals to 86 for two in the 11th over before six wickets tumbled for 62 runs to derail the run chase.

CMC

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