Tuesday, May 15, 2012

nail-baiting finishes (last over; last ball) - brand IPL 5


IPL version 5 has been the most entertaining of them all – so many matches going down the wire – last over, nay last ball finishes – and some unheard names suddenly emerging to the fore.  It is best of action out there !!  63 matches have been played and there have been some unpredicted results and unsung heroes playing key roles in them – some good bowling performances and more batting performances.  With just 9 more to go, it is still not a clear picture.

In match no. 63, CSK won in the last ball in a match of swinging fortunes – with 5 needed off the last ball, Bravo swung Rajat Batia for a six ……………  before that have you ever heard of Gurkeerat Singh…… this player, Gurkeerat Rupinder Singh from Faridkot, Punjab did a start turn in the match against Deccan.  Kings XI Punjab needed 16 off the last over with David Hussey at the crease and there were some expectations.   At the other end was little known Gurkeerat batting on 13.  It was Manpreet Gony bowling the last over – first 2 produced 3 runs – 13 off 4 – slightly running out of hand or so one thought !

The 3rd disappeared over midwicket – 6 to Gurkeerat, 4th a 4 in the off side and suddenly it was turning the other way – still 3 off 2; 2 off the 5th – a last ball finish and Gurkeerat closed it with another 4 !  

At Kolkatta, CSK required another win to be in the race and were chasing 159, not a high score after the brisk start KKR had.  Gambhir and Brendon McCullum had set off at breakneck speed, adding 99 in 11.2 overs  - from then on KKR slipped and at one stage they had lost 5 for 128.  some hitting by Yusuf Pathan took them to 158.   chasing 159, CSK had a close to 100 start off 10 overs before Sunil Naraine accounted for Michael Hussey and Murali Vijay in a spell of 4-0-14-2.  things slowed down.   27 were required off last 12 and it was the South African pacer Marchant de Lange.  The first ball was so fiercely struck that it could have taken someone along; second was another 4 and third disappeared a good 101 yards ! 

Only 9 required off last over and it was Rajat Bhatia who bowled the last over.  First was a single and second he had Dhoni bowled with a leg cutter.  Ravindra Jadeja made 3 off the next 2 and  Bravo could not score off the 5th with his bat leaving his hand.  5 off all the last ball – tension escalating, Bhatia bowled another low full toss which was sent soaring by Bravo just clearing the ropes and the fielders for a six and another last ball win !

In the earlier match – no. 62 at Bangalore there was the last over finish again.   RCB’s tally of 171 looked largely unlikely for long – it was a rain delayed match – Chris Gayle, AB de Villiers, Kohli all failed – when RCB were struggling relief came from Munaf  who ended up giving  four consecutive free-hits  and a six off the final delivery to double the run-rate.  Later some good hitting by Mayank Agarwal raised hopes and after 18 RCB were 134 for 6 with Zaheer khan just arrived, 150 looked probable.   19th over was bowled by Malinga, who was hit for 1-0-1-4-6-1 and Mayank had moved to 40.  last over was that of Munaf Patel – first a full toss hit over long off for a 6; 2nd a 4 giving Mayank 50 off 26 balls; 3rd another donkey drop hit for 4; 4th a 2; 5th – 6 and another 2 off the last -  Mayank finishing at 64 off 30 balls and Munaf’s figures read  4-0-54-1

In the chase, MI lost quick wickets Sachin, Gibbs, Rohit, Dinesh Karthik departed early and they were 51/5.  After 14 they required 77 off 36 balls.  57 required off the last 4 and Zaheer was hit for 16 with Ambati Rayudu slamming a six and four.  18th over of Vinaykumar cost 18 with runs flow being 1-6-4-6-1-0.   23 required off the last 2 and Zaheer was again  hit for 9.  off the tense last over 14 required and the options were limited – left arm spin of Appanna or that of Kohli, Dilshan, Chris Gayle……. It was Gayle  and by the 4th ball the match was over – Rayudu remaining not out with 81 and Kieron Pollard clobbering 51.  

Now there are some disturbing reports of match fixing in IPL – but the results have been unpredictable and there have been so many close matches; last over; last ball finishes with many little known players making them.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar.

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