Rajasthan Royals, on Saturday, finally returned to winning ways to register just their second win in seven games this season. The Royals beat Mumbai Indians by 4 wickets to revive their campaign. Asked to bat first, the three-time winners piled up 187 for 5. Quinton de Kock starred with the bat and top-scored for the side with 81. Skipper Rohit Sharma scored 47 while Hardik Pandya provided the finishing touches by slamming 28 off just 11 balls.
In reply, Royals rode on Jos Buttler’s 88-run knock to chase down the total in the final over. The inaugural winners of the competition suffered a mini collapse towards the end of the innings but Shreyas Gopal kept his nerve to score the winning runs.The Royals have already slipped far behind the leaders and cannot another slip up now. A few more bad results and the team can very well say goodbye to their playoff hopes.
No surprises then that the Royals would be desperate to win a handful of games in a row. However, they might find it difficult to do that as one of their most important players – Jofra Archer is likely to leave the side in the business end of the game. According to report in Daily Mail, England are all set to include Jofra Archer straight into their World Cup squad. But before playing in the World Cup, Archer is more than likely to be named in England’s squad for the one-off international in Ireland and the five-match series against Pakistan.
With the Ireland game on May 3, the allrounder is set to leave India before the league phase of the IPL gets over on May 5. Royals luckily have only one league game after May 3 but given their position right now, missing Archer will be a big blow for them. It should be also noted that along with Archer, Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler will also leave the Royals to join their England teammates.
Archer has so far picked up seven wickets in as many games and has been one of the most impressive performers for the Royals. Royals are more than likely to struggle to find a replacement for the Barbados-born allrounder.