30 April 2009

IPL 2.0: It's a surprise package

The second edition of Indan Premier League started off on April 18th exactly on the same date of the first edition. Like the first the second season will definitely won't have the novelty factor. However different country, different conditions have changed the equations. Also, there have been a few surprises in the script so far. The team which finished at the basement in first season "Deccan Chargers" are on the top with 100% winning record. Last year's champs Rajasthan Royals have experienced mixed season so far. However their trump card Yusuf Pathan has already scripted two awesome victories.

Personally, the experience has been different than previous year. I along with my PGPM batchmates are taking a few minutes off from our busy schedule to watch a few overs of some matches together. Seeing a cricket match in hostel is a different experience altogether. Also the internal PGPL game, a superselector type game conducted by Kalpesh has enriched the experience. Each one of us has formed a thirteen member team and every match we will score cumulative points depending on performance of the players. Instead of Oooh, Aaahs, Howzzat we will be shouting 15 points to me, 25 points to me!

Cross posted at ipl-buzz.blogspot.com

Some highlights of last two weeks.

  • The first day belonged to veterans. Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid came out with flying colors with solid batting and ensuread victory for their team. Anil Kumble made a difference by his extraordinary bowling figures 5/5.
  • Spinners are key players in bowling attack. Anil Kumble, Piyush Chawla and Yusuf Pathan are keeping batsmen on their toes. Even part time spinners like Suresh Raina are able to check the scoring rate. In yesterday's match RCB v/s KKR, 15 overs of RCB were bowled by spinners. Who had speculated this before the start of the tournament ?
  • Malinga has been the best among pacers. The Sri-Lanka bowler representing Mumbai Indians has been a tough customer to handle with his toe crushing yorkers.
  • Gilly and Hayden are still the best. Former openers of world beating Australian team have been major scorers in the tournament so far. Their breezy innings had given solid foundation to their respective teams.
  • Rains have been major villains in this IPL. Two games were completely washed out. Also results of two matches of Kings XI were decided using D/L method. On both occasions Kings XI were on receiving end.
  • Super Over is a super idea! The first tie of IPL was the match betwen RR and KKR. The winners were decided using a new format super-over, a format in which both teams will given an over each to score maximum runs. KKR scored 15 runs and RR's Yusuf Pathan chased the runs in just 4 balls! The format has been welcomed by many cricketing experts.
  • Ajantha Mendis is not a mystery anymore. The KKR bowler who had been nightmare to batsmen is no longer a mystery bowler. The bowler gave away 16 runs in just 4 balls in a super-over decider. In other match againt Mumbai, the opening combo of Sachin and Jayasurya dismissed his deliveries to stands several times. In yesterday's match the mystery bowler was out of playing eleven.
  • International T20 stars may not be IPL stars. The major example for this Robin Utthappa. The T20 specialist who RCB had exhanged from Mumbai in place of Zaheer Khan is yet to bat beyond first over in the tournament. Not only batting he had been sloppy in the field too. In the match against DDD he dropped a catch at crucial juncture. At that point the match could have gone both ways.
  • One anonymous blogger has created flutters in the blogosphere and entire cricketing world by posting many funny inside stores of team KKR. The KKR team management is yet to find out who the mole is. It is some internal person or an enthusiastic bloggy on cyberspace. Still a million dollar question ...
  • Last but not the least - Strategy breaks! .. Lalit Modi's marketing brain's idea has received tons of criticism. On several occasions batting team has lost a wicket within first over after the break. For the viewers too it's a patch in the extertainment quotient of watching a T20 game.

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