IPL 2010: Player’s Performance

 IPL-3 is in final stage with Mumbai, Bangalore, Deccan and Chennai qualified for the semi finals. Mumbai will take on Chennai in the final and rest two will fight for the 3rd spot. Teams like Delhi Daredevils and Kolkata Knight Riders have only themselves to blame, they had plenty of riches within their ranks for their vapid show, others like Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab neither had the firepower nor the form to help their cause. These four teams, which failed to make to semi final, paid the price for the lack of form of their key players, names which promised a lot, but delivered a little. Let’s have a look at performance of top players from these four teams. Yuvraj Singh (Kings XI Punjab)Matches: 14 Runs: 255 Highest: 43 Average: 21.25 S/R: 128.14He was in news for all other reasons except his batting!!Stripped from captaincy, Yuvraj didn't do his reputation any good by being one of the biggest flop stories of this campaign. Even Yuvraj did come out with his own statement saying there is no problem within the side. Kumar Sangakkara (Kings XI Punjab)  Matches: 13 Runs: 357 Highest: 56 Average: 29.75 S/R: 138.91 If the outgoing captain of Kings XI Punjab was struggling to find form, the incumbent fared only marginally better. Kumar Sangakkara's 42-ball 56 against Mumbai Indians was a match-winning effort, but most of his other contributions were forgettable may be because of captaincy pressure on him. S Sreesanth (Kings XI Punjab)Matches: 6 Wickets: 3 Best Bowling: 2-24 Average: 63.66 E/R: 10.05 The Kerala speedster is never in the news for his performances. In the inaugural edition, we remember him for crying in public after the 'Slapgate' incident. But … [Read more...]

IPL : Cricket or Carnival ?

 When the IPL started in 2008, its huge popularity made one feel that it would serve the cause of cricket. Now, one is doubtful. IPL venues look more like carnivals instead of grounds where cricket is played. Cricket shares the limelight with team owners who grace the VIP stands and dugouts with their family and friends. The owners are usually bigwigs in the movie and corporate world. Cheerleaders prancing and ear-blasting music are the hallmarks of an IPL match. Pictures of post-match parties which players are compulsorily supposed to attend are splashed on Page 3 of tabloids and newspapers every day. These activities have hardly anything to do with cricket. They are more like marketing gimmicks to attract people who have no actual interest in the game. A true blue cricketer will surely be interested only in cricket and would indulge in activities like parties only in his leisure time. The staunch cricket fan also comes to the stadium to just enjoy the game of cricket. He is not interested in watching Shahrukh Khan, Shilpa Shetty or even Vijay Mallya. Even a fan watching the game on TV would prefer to watch it on silent mode minus all the noise and would barely tolerate the innumerable advertisements which keep popping up. The recent scams reported in the media have not helped matters any. A cricket lover watching the match would keep wondering if the game being played is clean and if any murky deals are going on behind the scenes? The off-field googlies of IPL-3 are reminiscent of the time when the betting scam involving Hansie Cronje, Herschelle Gibbs and others, had surfaced. Names of some of our own cricketers had also cropped up. That was a very difficult time for cricket and the sport lost many of its fans. One hopes that IPL does not … [Read more...]

IPL: Tales of money, politics and family

 Time was when the grouses against IPL were that it resulted in players being overworked, that the cheerleaders’ costumes were against Indian culture and that the focus was on film stars instead of cricket. This was baby talk compared to the issues being raised now. Now we know that the IPL Commissioner's brother-in-law has a stake in an IPL franchise; his stepson-in-law holds the web rights for IPL. We already know that a member of the BCCI has a stake in another IPL franchise. Looks like the great men in the cricket board who rule the cricketers with an iron hand have not heard of something called 'clash of interest'. Also, a minister in the Central Government 'blesses' the formation of a new franchise and the lady who is rumoured to be his love interest gets a 'free' stake in the franchise. She of course claims that it is 'sweat equity' for advice rendered to the franchise. And as if all this was not enough, the IPL Commissioner, Mr. Lalit Modi, who seems to be greatly troubled over the allotment of the Kochi franchise, vents out his ire on Twitter. One would think that a person of his stature would use a proper forum to present this issue. It looks more like he is bent on disqualifying the Kochi franchise, Rendezvous Sports World as well as disturbing Mr. Shashi Tharoor's already fragile ministerial post. The match off the field , that is the Modi-Tharoor spat is now providing more entertainment than the actual matches. With skeletons tumbling out of various cupboards, one realises that IPL is not just about cricket and entertainment now. One can now hear about franchises routed through tax havens which obviously indicate money laundering activities and of pressures to allot franchises to particular business entities. It does look … [Read more...]

Mumbai Indians are marching ahead

 Author: Trina Ghosh (Gurgaon). Sachin fires Mumbai Indians to the top of IPL table. This was Mumbai Indians seventh win out of eight matches. The 2nd match of the IPL 2010 between Mumbai Indians and Rajasthan Royals which was played  on 13th March 2010 at the DY Patil stadium in Mumbai. Mumbai won by 4 runs. Remember Rajasthan Royals is the winner of 1st season of IPL T20. Mumbai Indians bowlers Amit Uniyal and Dimitri Mascarenhas took 2 wickets each in their 4 overs spells. Saurabh Tiwary and Ambati Rayudu’s half centuries made Mumbai Indians to pass the 200 runs mark. At the end, Mumbai with the tricks of Malinga win their first IPL match in season 3.        Mumbai Indians vs. Royal Challengers Bangalore was clash in the 14th T20 match of the IPL 2010 which was played in Mumbai on 20th March. The Mumbai Indians IPL cricket team has lost to the Bangalore Royal Challengers   by 7 wickets. This was only one match where MI has lost. Then again Mumbai Indians have absolutely demolished the Kolkata Knight Riders on 22nd March in Brabourne Stadium; Mumbai saw Mumbai beat Kolkata by 7 wickets. Sachin Tendulkar was the Man of the Match. After that   Mumbai Indians beat Chennai Super Kings in Brabourne Stadium on 25th march, MI won by 5 wickets (with 6 balls remaining). The 5th match of Mumbai Indians,   against Kings XI Punjab in Brabourne Stadium – Mumbai on 30th march and MI won by 4 wickets, Man of the Match: Lasith Malinga. This was their fifth win at Brabourne Stadium. Mumbai Indians vs. Deccan Chargers in Brabourne Stadium – Mumbai on 3rd April. MI won by 41 runs. Man of the Match: Harbhajan Singh.         Ambati Rayudu cracked an unbeaten 29-ball 55 as … [Read more...]

Team analysis: Kings Eleven Punjab

  Kings XI Punjab is a cricket franchise based in Mohali. The team is currently captained by Sri Lanka's captain-wicket keeper Kumar Sangakkara who replaced Yuvraj Singh after the 2009 season. For the IPL3, an additional venue has been chosen at Dharamsala. The first owners of the franchise included Preity Zinta, Ness Wadia (Bombay Dyeing), Karan Paul (Apeejay Surendera Group) and Mohit Burman (Dabur). The group paid a total of $76 million to acquire the franchise. There was rumor during 10 Feb that India’s premium manufacturer of 2-wheeled motorised vehicles – Hero Honda bought Indian Premier League Kings XI Punjab for a whopping US $ 260 million. However, no independent confirmation of this deal has been received from both the parties. Later on it was confirmed that the Hero Group had not acquired Kings XI Punjab. Performance: 2008 Season: The tournament got off to a slow start for the Kings XI, with the team losing their first two games. However, despite losing Australians Brett Lee and Simon Katich, the team found its groove. Powered by their balanced bowling lineup and effective top order, the team won 9 of its next 10 matches, clinching a birth in the semi-final. In the semi-final, their run in the tournament came to an end with a comprehensive 9 wicket loss to the Chennai Super Kings. 2009 Season: Finishing as semi-finalists during 2008, The Kings XI Punjab started with enormous ambitions to win the trophy. Their ambitions were supported by their new sponsors Emirates Airlines. With two available slots to fill The Punjab Kings made bids on Jerome Taylor and Yusuf Abdulla at the second IPL auctions. The team took a hit as most of their Australian cricketers were not available. … [Read more...]

My failed IPL T20 Cricet Predictions

 Indian Premier League has thrown up some unexpected results and I failed to predict them before the onset of IPL T20 tournament in my Indian Premier League blog. Some players surprised me with their superb performances while some are disappointed me.  What I failed to predict: 1. Rajasthan Royals: I thought that it may win one or two matches but what happened is exactly opposite. I underestimated team spirit and Shane Warne’s leadership. Rajasthan Royals made me fool before my readers. Thank you Royals!  2. Hyderabad Deccan Chargers: Absence of a great leader and selection politics is the reason behind their worst performance. Gilchrist may not know about all these politics but coach Robin Singh knows. Hyderabad has worst franchisee owners in the IPL.  3. Venugopala Rao: I am still unable to recover (positive surprise) from his stellar performances. As an Andhraite, I am happy to see his unbelievable transformation from Dravid like batting to “Sixers Rao”. Greg Chappell spotted immense talent in him but I thought he was a test player. He will surely serve for India in all formats of cricket. Who can forget his valiant knocks and useful bowling?  4. Muralidharan: I thought that he will among the top three wicket takers before the onset of IPL but he is still struggling to take a single wicket per match.  5. Mohammad Asif: I thought McGrath-Asif combination will become a nightmare for opposition. But Asif disappointed me and his Delhi team with his wayward bowling.  6. Sreesanth: He is simply sensational after “slapgate” episode. He needs to be nurtured carefully for Test cricket. I also underestimated Mohali leg spinner "Piyush Chawla".  7. Ricky … [Read more...]

Who will win Indian Premier League title?

 Indian Premier League teams are exhibiting unpredictable performances in the recent days. No team is looking as hot favourite to win 2008 Indian Premier League. I surprised after seeing the decimation of Chennai Super Kings in Jaipur at the hands of Rajasthan Royals while Mumbai Indians comfortably defeated Delhi Daredevils as Delhi depended too heavily on their top order. Kolkata Knight Riders suffered successive defeats after rousing start in the initial matches. Even though these unpredictable results are good for IPL tournament but team fans are not in a position to digest their unpredictable performances. Bowlers are gradually gaining edge over batsmen and Delhi legend Glenn McGrath is simply a revelation in this tournament. There is visible drop in batting performances of some teams after the exit of foreign players. At present, Rajasthan Royals are consistently winning matches due to collective performances but you need match winners like Adam Gilchrist and Virender Sehwag etc to win in knock out matches. I am eagerly waiting to see how they perform in high voltage matches. Except Deccan Chargers and Bangalore Royals, all teams are looking strong to win the trophy. Mumbai Indians are current underdogs. Players I missed in IPL 2008: Andrew Flintoff and Kevin Pietersen. What I liked in IPL: 1. Shane Warne – superb leader and Jaipur success is a case study for MBA atudents.2. Rajasthan Royals team – Underdogs surprised analysts with their performances.3. Australian and New Zealand cricketers: We really missed these stars. Who can forget McCullum and Hussey centuries and Mathew Hayden’s consistency?4. Adam Gilchrist & Virender Sehwag: Most dangerous cricketers on their day.5. Shaun Pollock … [Read more...]

IPL news and analysis

 Indian cricketers are gradually taking centre stage in the Indian premier League after the exit of might Australians. Wonderful batting from Rohit Sharma (Lone warrior in a poor Hyderabad team) failed to save Hyderabad Deccan Chargers against Mohali IPL. Shane Ware’s Rajasthan Royals crushed Kolkata IPL but Warne-Ganguly episode took centre stage. Sourav Ganguly and Harbhajan Gang should think that Cricket is greater than any cricketer. Forget about spirit of the game, Ganguly scored a wonderful and fighting half century but team collapsed in the team.Verdict: No team seems to be clear favourite to win IPL. Most successful strategy: 1. Rajasthan Royals bet on young players and their strategy paid rich dividends. Kudos for Shane Warne for selecting young Indian cricketers over his Hampshire teammate Mascarenhas. IPL needs captains and coaches like Shane Warne. He picked Asnodkar as opener against a tough opposition like Kolkata. I can’t understand: 1. Why Hyderabad is selecting Arjun Yadav and Venugopala Rao ahead of dynamic young player Ravi Teja. I am getting headache by thinking about Hyderabad team selection. Robin Singh is the worst coach and VVS Laxman is the worst captain in IPL. 2. Why Bangalore is leaving Misbah-Ul-Haq on the bench? Bangalore needs Robin Uthappa as icon but not Rahul Dravid. My suggestion: 1. IPL authorities need to change “4 foreign player rule” to raise the quality of matches. Teams should need 5-6 international players for high quality games. 2. ICC should include IPL in their calendar otherwise we will see 10-15 retirement announcements from International players especially from England and New Zealand. 3. There are very good players in … [Read more...]

Analysis of IPL captains

 Captains played a very crucial role in changing the fortunes of their IPL teams. Captains like Shane Warne and Dhoni inspired their teams with their leadership qualities while Dravid and Laxman buckled under pressure with poor batting and unimaginative captaincy. Unlike Dravid, Laxman at least sacrificed money and iconic status. Analysis of Indian Premier League captains: 1. Shane Warne: He is the coach, captain, magician, God, motivator and saviour for underdogs Jaipur. He inspired young Jaipur team to sensational victories. 2. MS Dhoni: Ice Man Dhoni showed his immense potential against Bangalore with his hard hitting and cool captaincy. Indian cricket is in the safe hands of this “Ice Man”. We will know his real potential in the coming matches where Chennai will miss the services of Mathew Hayden, Michael Hussey and Jacob Oram. Can he inspire his team like Warne? 3. Virender Sehwag: One superb inning against Hyderabad and nothing else. 4. Yuvraj Singh: He is playing consistently well in all the Mohali IPL matches. But team lost some matches due to bad selection and unsettled batting order. Indian vice-captain need to prove his captaincy skills. 5. Sourav Ganguly: He is an inspirational leader but poor batsman. Kolkata fans love the passionate combination of Sourav-Shahrukh but Ganguly needs to score runs. 6. Rahul Dravid: Why is he playing in this tournament? What can he do in Twenty20 games? He should sit at home and watch matches. Poor leader but good man. 7. VVS Laxman: You should pick your best players to win tight Twenty20 games. You can’t bat; you can’t see potential in young men; you can’t take bold innovate decisions; you can’t field; you can’t say no … [Read more...]

IPL Cricket stars we miss in May

 Indian Premier League teams will miss some match winning foreign cricketers in May. Absence of these stars will have maximum impact on teams like Chennai, Kolkata and Hyderabad while Teams like Rajasthan, Bangalore and Delhi will be less impacted by their absence. Dale Steyn is the bowler to watch out in May. 1. Chennai Super Kings: New Zealand all rounder Jacob Oram and Australian batsman Mathew Hayden and Michael Hussey will not play for Chennai IPL in the next month. Chennai will reach semi-finals but title hopes are almost out of question due to their absence. These three cricketers clean swept all the three man of the match awards in the Chennai matches. Chennai is the most affected team in the Indian Premier League. South African pacer Morkel may fill the void left by Jacob Oram and Stephen Fleming may partially fill the gap left by Michael Hussey. But who will replace Match winner Mathew Hayden? 2. Punjab Kings Eleven: Mohali IPL will miss its strike bowler Brett Lee, Kylie Mills and Simon Katich. It is almost impossible to fill the boots of Australian Speedster. 3. Hyderabad Deccan Chargers: They will miss their star batsman Andrew Symonds. So their hope of reaching semi-finals is almost out of question. 4. Bangalore Royal Challengers: They will miss New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor, Australian speedster Ashley Noffke and West Indies batsman Chanderpaul. But Bangalore fortunes will be boosted by arrivals of South African sensation Dale Steyn. Zaheer Khan, Praveen kumar, Anil Kumble, Dale Steyn and Jacques Kallis may destroy any batting lineup in Indian Premier League. 5. Delhi daredevils: Delhi will not be affected much due to the absence of New Zealand spinner Daniel Vettori. South African batsman De … [Read more...]