Brutal Buttler century guides Royals to Capitals conquest

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Jos Buttler blazed a third century of his remarkable season to help Rajasthan Royals get the better of Delhi Capitals in Mumbai.

The English opener cracked 116 from 65 balls in Rajasthan's 222-2, making his highest score of the IPL campaign so far and emphasising his position as the leading run-scorer in the 2022 competition. Despite a late rally, Delhi fell short by making 207-8 in reply, sliding to a 15-run defeat, with the Royals going top of the table.

This was game seven for the Royals and Buttler, and he came up trumps once more, sharing in a first-wicket partnership of 155 with Devdutt Padikkal (54) before captain Sanju Samson (46no) came out firing for the final overs.

Delhi were up against it from the off but had a sniff of a chance when Rishabh Pant began finding all corners of the Wankhede Stadium; however, Pant's departure for 44 from 24 balls in the 12th over meant there was only tenuous hope left.

Prithvi Shaw (37) and David Warner (28) had given Delhi a reasonable enough start but failed to stick around.

Yuzvendra Chahal at deep fine leg dropped Pant early in the 12th over, misreading the flight of the ball, but the batsman fell two deliveries later. Pant got a top edge when looking to pull into the leg side, and Padikkal watched the ball soar high into the night sky before it fell to allow him to take a fine catch.

Lalit Yadav and Rovman Powell showed fight to leave Delhi needing 36 from the final two overs, but Prasidh Krishna (3-22) then had Yadav caught behind in a remarkable wicket maiden. Three sixes by Powell at the start of the 20th over raised hopes of a miracle finale, but Delhi's protests over a possible no-ball killed their own momentum.

Buttler serves up another ton of treats

Man-of-the-moment Buttler came into this season with one century in 65 IPL matches, spread across six years. Now he has four in 72, and on this occasion it took him 36 balls to reach 50 and only 21 more to advance to three figures.

Buttler made a ton against Mumbai Indians in his second game of the season, and followed that knock of exactly 100 with an impressive 103 in his sixth outing, against Kolkata Knight Riders. There were nine fours and nine sixes in this masterpiece by the 31-year-old, and he has 491 runs for the season, 226 more than the next highest scorer in the competition (KL Rahul – 265).

Surreal McCoy

Royals paceman Obed McCoy cost his team 26 runs with a dreadful over that included nine runs given away in extras, five of which came from a wild and head-high no ball that raced away to the boundary. It was probably the worst delivery that will be bowled in this year's IPL, sailing way outside off stump after slipping out of McCoy's hand and landing several yards wide of wicketkeeper Samson.

When McCoy conceded three sixes from the first three balls of the final over, Delhi needed three more maximums for victory, but the paceman avoided further embarrassment.

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