England Watch, IPL Week 5: Jos Buttler tops the class, David Willey stars on debut
Which England players starred in Week 5 of IPL 11? Tweet us @SkyCricket
By David Ruse
Last Updated: 07/05/18 10:52am
Jos Buttler was the best of the bunch as five England players saw action during week five of the IPL, while David Willey marked his tournament debut with a tidy performance.
Read on as we assess how Buttler, Rajasthan Royals team-mate Ben Stokes and Chennai star Willey, as well as Alex Hales (Sunrisers Hyderabad) and Liam Plunkett (Delhi Daredevils) fared in the latest batch of matches…
Jos Buttler (Rajasthan Royals)
Top score: 67
Rajasthan promoted Buttler up to open against Delhi and Kings XI Punjab and he dished out some serious blows! The 27-year-old cracked seven sixes and four fours in a 26-ball 67 in the rain-affected defeat to Delhi, reaching fifty from 18 deliveries. Buttler took Avesh Khan to the cleaners - blazing the paceman for four maximums in total and three in one over - while he also bludgeoned two boundaries off Plunkett. Buttler's innings against Kings XI, which also came in a losing cause, was more watchful, though he still managed seven boundaries. Royals are at the foot of the table and struggling to make the play-offs but Buttler is in the groove.
Ben Stokes (Rajasthan Royals)
Top score: 12
Best figures: 1-22
Buttler is in the groove but Stokes is not. He went wicketless against Delhi and scored only one run, while his innings versus Kings XI was cut short on 12 when Manoj Tiwary and Mayank Agarwal teamed up brilliantly catch him in the deep, long-off fielder Agarwal hurling the ball to Tiwary at long-on before he tumbled over the boundary rope. Stokes did dismiss Agarwal in Kings XI's innings, giving the all-rounder a rare moment of joy in an underwhelming IPL 11 campaign so far. The £1.4m has a top score of 45 in nine innings and has only bagged two wickets, stats he will be looking to augment in the reverse fixture against Kings XI on Wednesday.
Alex Hales (Sunrisers Hyderabad)
Top score: 45
Hales' numbers read the same as last week - the Nottinghamshire man backing up his 45 on debut against Rajasthan on April 29, with an identical total against Delhi on Saturday. Hales' second innings (31 balls) was brisker than his first (39 balls), while he also hammered three sixes against Delhi, each of them off Avesh Khan - not his week, was it? - in the sixth over as Sunrisers extended their winning streak to four catches. Hales' opening partnership with Shikhar Dhawan looks one to be feared.
David Willey (Chennai Super Kings)
Best figures: 1-24
Willey had quipped earlier in the week that you find out if you are in the Chennai side once skipper MS Dhoni wakes up at 4pm! Perhaps amused, Dhoni handed the England all-rounder his IPL bow against RCB on Saturday and he did not disappoint. Willey located swing, had Colin de Grandhomme caught at extra-cover and conceded only 24 runs from his four overs in Pune, while he also contributed in the field, snaffling a catch and running out Umesh Yadav with a direct hit from mid-off.
Liam Plunkett (Delhi Daredevils)
Best figures: 1-27
Plunkett impressed with wickets and economical bowling in his first two IPL games against Kings XI and Kolkata Knight Riders - but found life trickier in his three outings this week. The Yorkshire seamer was tonked by Ambati Rayudu and Shane Watson en route to figures of 0-52 from three overs against Chennai, with six sixes smashed off his bowling.
The 33-year-old then shipped 0-37 from three overs in the DLS win over Rajasthan, although he could have had Buttler caught on 43 - Delhi 'keeper Rishabh Pant shelling a tough chance down the leg side. Plunkett fared better against Sunrisers on Saturday, even if his team didn't, with 1-27 - the paceman conceding just two boundaries and dismissing Manish Pandey.
Those not selected:
Plenty of heel-kicking for the rest of the England contingent with Mark Wood (Chennai), Sam Billings (Chennai), Tom Curran (KKR), Chris Jordan (Sunrisers), Moeen Ali (RCB), Chris Woakes (RCB) and Jason Roy (Delhi) going unselected.
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