KKR has shut all doors of semis with their yesterday’s performance. I quoted yesterday on my blog that KKR will lose and won’t make it to the semis and KKR proved my words right. KKR won the toss and elected to bat first on dry pitch but this time Ganguly and Gayle failed to give them the start which they were giving in earlier matches. Gayle after hitting superb six of R.Ashwin again stepped out to send the ball out of the park on the next ball but to his misfortune he got stumped by Dhoni and I must say Gayle threw his wicket and did not batted sensibly which was demand of the situation. McCullum came in but he also didn’t last long and played sweep shot to Ashwin but caught on fine leg and KKR were looking in all sorts of trouble but their woes continue and this time umpire Sanjay Hazare wounded them further by giving hard decision of LBW to Sourav Ganguly of Doug Bollinger. In came David Hussey and he also didn’t last long as he was also stumped by Dhoni of Ashwin’s bowling. Ashwin bowled beautifully in his spell and finished his spell upfront picking up 3 wickets and put KKR on back-foot. After this Angelo Mathews and Manoj Tiwary steadied the innings for KKR and did good partnership of but once Manoj Tiwary and Angelo Mathews got out. KKR innings fell apart and they bowled out for paltry total of 139 and CSK got the target of 140 to win this match. KKR reached 139 after poor start that was heartening for them. Hayden and Vijay came out for CSK to open the innings but very soon Hayden got out to Chris Gayle and it looked like something will happen and match will become interesting but Vijay and Raina made this match one side affair with their superb and intelligent stroke-making and did partnership in excess of 150 runs and won the match for CSK. Raina especially played superb innings and he showed his his class once again and became highest run-scorer in IPL. Vijay supported Raina very well and achieved one more 50. CSK won this match by 9 wickets and few overs to spare which gave big boost to their net run-rate and they zoomed to No.2 position from No.6. Now they CSK can breathe easy and if they win their next 2 matches they will be in semis. For KKR, They not only lost the match but also shut down the doors of semis as their net run-rate took big beating with this loss. Even if they win next two matches they can’t reach semis because they not only have to win but have to win with big margins and they will be playing two formidable team in their next two matches RR and MI. Even outburst by Ganguly couldn’t help KKR to win.
R. Ashwin named Man of the Match for his superb spell.
At CCI, DD took MI in a very important encounter. For MI this was formality and they experimented in this match by giving chance to their benched players. DD put in their best side for this match. Sachin won the toss and elected to bat first with new opener and wicket-keeper C.Madan. Both started quietly and very soon C. Madan got out hooking. Saurabh Tiwary replaced Madan and did useful partnership with Sachin as maestro again looked in brilliant form but maestro failed to play big innings today and fell for useful 30. Rayudu joined Tiwary and both did good partnership and put MI in situation from where they can accelerate. Tiwary got out trying to hit the ball out of the park and in came Pollard and he took the attack to DD and finished of in style by hitting 25 runs of last over. At one stage it looked like MI achieve 140 or 150 score but late burst by Pollard gave the winning total to MI. First time in the tournament Pollard justified his purchase for whopping amount and this innings of his was paisa vasool innings. DD got the stiff target of 184 to chase and this time DD got fantastic start from their openers Viru and Warner as they put on 69 runs in first six overs but very soon Warner threw his wicket and from here on it became MIs match as they kept picking wickets at regular intervals and DD kept throwing wickets. In such a crucial match DD continued their habit of playing reckless strokes and lost the match. I must say they need somebody who can make them understand that cricket is also a game of brain. Its not bat and ball and you have to play according to the situation. I feel whatever matches DD lost in this tournament is because of the over-confidence and disrespect for opposition bowlers. It was Pollard day today as his fielding and bowling also played big part and naturally he was Man of the Match. For DD things are getting tougher and tougher for DD but they have the players who can come good any day but they have to apply their brains if they want to make it to semis.
Today RR will take on RCB. On points table both teams are identical and whoever win will seal his position in semis. Both teams have to try and win convincingly as well to improve their run-rate because 5 teams are on same points and net run-rate will be decide the teams for semis. In this match nobody is favourite but on paper RCB looks far superior than RR but as we all saw in this tournament, RR defeated big teams with their limited resources, so RCB have to take this match very seriously if they have to win. Both teams have match winners and whoever play good and intelligent cricket will win.