IPL 2018: Buttler keeps playoff hopes alive for RR

IPL 2018: Buttler keeps playoff hopes alive for RR

The next stop: Things are heating up at the top with two playoff spots open for four teams to grab.

Despite a cautious start, Buttler bursted with wonderful strokes at the right time to power RR's chase of 169. RR won the toss and elected to bowl, and MI took to the crease. Sportsbet Australia gives slimmer 8/13 odds of a Mumbai victory, while a Royals victory returns 13/10 odds. They had earlier thrashed Sunrisers Hyderabad by eight wickets on Sunday. With this loss, the Mumbai Indians not only have to win both their remaining games but also have to depend on other teams.

Jasprit Bumrah provided Mumbai early delight when he had D'Arcy Short caught behind poking at one which left him in the first over.

Not much changes are expected to be seen in both sides as the two teams will look to continue with their winning combination.

"I think we've got the momentum now and there's no reason why we shouldn't make it to the playoffs", Archer said.

However, Ajinkya Rahane then joined Jos Buttler in the middle and began producing some delightful strokeplay.

But skipper Ajinkya Rahane will expect his team to get their act together and aim for consistency as several must-win games have been lined up for them. He hit five sixes and nine boundaries in his innings. The England batsman began with scores of 29, 23, 24, 22, 6 and 10 before turning a tide after being promoted to the opening slot. Buttler scored his fifth consecutive fifty in this year's IPL to bat Mumbai Indians out of the contest.

Despite the shaky start, skipper Rahane and Jos Buttler batted confidently and stitched a 95-run partnership.

Buttler hit a six off the last delivery of the 18th over to take RR home in style.

Buttler's unbeaten 94 helped Rajasthan defeat defending champions Mumbai Indians with two overs to spare keeping them firmly in contention of reaching the Play-offs. However, the scenario could have been completely different had it not been for some dropped catches. Suryakumar pulled one down the throat of Unadkat at fine-leg for a 31-ball 38 and Rohit Sharma was dismissed in the exact same manner the very next ball, for his third golden duck this season.

Kishan was unable to repeat his heroics from the previous match and fell for 12 runs. Being the most successful side in the first decade of IPL, MI have earned the notorious sobriquet of late risers, of late bloomers.

Per ESPNcricinfo's Smart Stats metrics, Archer had a Smart Economy Rate of -0.01 in this game, which essentially means that he saved more runs than he conceded.

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