THE CAP: Jofra Archer took its first wickets in almost 20 months as a new league SA20 took off at Newlands in Cape Town on Tuesday.
The England fast bowler took three for 27 to set up a comfortable eight wicket and bonus run victory for MI Cape Town against Paarl Royals.
The injured Archer played just one game last year, sending nine overs without taking a wicket for the England Lions against England in Abu Dhabi in November.
Struggling with back and elbow injuries, he had not played in a representative game since arriving for Sussex in July 2021 and had not taken a wicket since playing for Sussex against Kent in May of This year.
Archer, bowling’s first change, struck with his third ball on Tuesday when Wihan Lubbe was caught off guard. Bowling over 140 km/h, he claimed two more wickets on successive balls in his fourth and final final, dismissing David Miller and Ferisco Adams.
“After this long, long break, it was great to see. He’s back in full force,” the Cape captain said. Rashid Khan.
Losing captain Miller, who was put down by Archer on the 18th before being caught for the 42nd, acknowledged Archer’s impact.
“It’s great to have him back for world cricket,” he said.
A near-full crowd of around 20,000 watched the first match of a tournament which Cricket South Africa hopes will revive local interest in the game and bring financial stability to an organization which has lost hundreds of millions of rands in recent years.
All six teams in the league are drawn from Indian Premier League franchises. There was a heavy IPL influence on Tuesday in the form of loud music, fireworks, flame machines and announcements that filled every available moment.
MI Cape Town is owned by Mumbai Indians. Along with a full complement of players and coaches, the Mumbai franchise sent an eight-person media and marketing team to promote the Cape Town side.
The playing conditions included permission for teams to nominate 13 players before finalizing their XI after the draw. Neither team made any changes to their first-choice team after Khan won the toss and decided to go bowling.
Two “strategic timeouts” of 2min 30sec were scheduled in each round to “allow the teams to regroup tactically” – and the television channels to fit in some advertisements.
Archer and his fellow bowlers limited the Royals to 142 for seven with England white ball captain Jos Buttler leading with 51.
MI Cape Town took the win, however, with 19-year-old prospect Dewald Brevis hitting an unbeaten 70 from 41 balls.
South Africa have reduced their international matches in order to host the SA20, including forgoing a one-day series in Australia which was due to start on Thursday.
Short scores:
Paarl Royals 142-7 in 20 overs (J. Buttler 51, D. Miller 42; J Archer 3-27, O. Stone 2-31). MI Cape Town 143-2 in 15.3 overs (D Brevis 70 not out, R. Rickelton 42). MI Cape Town won by three wickets.



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