(Reuters) - Rajasthan Royals failed in their bid to make the playoff of this year's Indian Premier League (IPL) but their pace spearhead Jofra Archer will leave with his held head high after his superlative performance in the tournament.
Sunday's 60-run thumping by Kolkata Knight Riders ended the 2008 winners' hope of a second IPL title but England quick Archer enjoyed a stellar season and still leads the race for the tournament's Most Valuable Player.
Archer is among the six bowlers who have claimed 20 or more wickets in this IPL and his economy rate of 6.55 is the best among them.
Rajasthan Captain Steve Smith felt the team's inconsistent top order had failed to complement the effort of Archer and all-rounder Rahul Tewatia.
"Jofra has been exceptional pretty much every game. Tewatia obviously has pulled a few out of the hat throughout the tournament ... Not enough support for them," the Australian said.
Barbados-born Archer also appeared to enjoy his lower order cameos and smashed 10 sixes in the tournament.
"Jofra was outstanding with his economy rates," Rajasthan coach Andrew McDonald said.
"He's been incredible on the field and stamped his authority on the game early in the tournament when he got his chance with the bat.
"His all-round game keeps getting better. We had too few contributions around him."
Archer said last week he was counting down the days to be free from the world of bio-secure bubbles that he has been trapped in for the past few months in order to play cricket amid the COVID-19 pandemic. [nL4N2HJ460]
"We come back stronger," the 25-year-old tweeted after his team crashed out of the playoff race.
(Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in New Delhi; editing by Richard Pullin)