by Daniel Grummitt
Ajinkya Rahane made the Royals run chase a formality.
REUTERS/Adnan Abidi. Picture Supplied by Action Images
Rajasthan Royals 121-1 (Rahane 62no) beat
Perth Scorchers 120 (Cooper 4-18) by 9 wickets
Champions League T20, Group A Match, Jaipur
The day’s second Champions League T20 match was markedly more one-sided than the first. Whereas Otago and Lions had needed a second tie-breaker to separate them, Rajasthan Royals breezed into the semi-finals courtesy of a nine-wicket demolition of a now-eliminated Perth Scorchers.
Slow bowlers Kevon Cooper and Pravin Tambe shared six wickets for 35 runs as Perth were dismissed for a pitiful 120 after being asked to bat. Ajinkya Rahane and Sanju Samson then hit unbeaten half-centuries to help the Royals ease home in the 17th over.
They did lose their skipper Rahul Dravid in the opening over of their run chase to Jason Behrendorff for a duck, but that was to be the Scorchers’ sole success. Rahane and Samson added an unbroken 120 for the second-wicket in 95 balls, with the former ending on 62 off 53 balls having hit seven boundaries, and the latter on 50 off 42 balls, also with seven boundaries to his name.
The Scorchers bowlers hardly disgraced themselves but were simply given far too few runs to defend. Behrendorff, Michael Beer and Joel Paris each went at around seven runs per over.
The Perth innings had earlier been a painful affair as they lost regular wickets. Six of their batsmen reached double figures, but only one of those – Adam Voges with 27 – went onto reach 20. James Faulkner took two wickets with his left-arm seam, but it was Tambe and Cooper who did most of the damage.
The 41 year-old leg-spinner took two for 17 from his fours overs, dismissing Tom Triffitt and Scorchers skipper Simon Katich. Trinidadian Cooper, meanwhile, ripped the heart out of the middle-order, removing Adam Voges, Hilton Cartwright, Ashton Turner and Joe Mennie en route to four for 18 and the man of the match award.
The Royals join Chennai Super Kings in having already qualified for the semi-finals, while neither Australian side – Perth Scorchers or Brisbane Heat – can now make the last four.
Group A standings: Royals 12 points (3 games played), Otago 10 points (3), Mumbai 6 points (3), Lions (4), Scorchers (3) both 2 points.
© Cricket World 2013