Friday, April 12, 2013

Fixers and Actors are just not Bothered

The DD vs SRH match on 12/4/13 further confirmed (though in a sense every match does so) that for the fixers and the players, ACSU of ICC were just non-existent. I say so because this match was one of the crudest and the most blatant displays of fixing. Though there are a large number of matches that will fall in this category, the final of Big-Bash being one of those.

DD have lost their last 3 matches and must try hard to win this one. On paper they are much stronger team with awesome Sehwag, Warner, and Jayawardene at the top of their batting. They win the toss and decide to bat. Odds are 1.57 in their favour on the strength of the team on paper inspite of their poor showing of late. Fine.

Warner gives catching practice to mid on in the first over and DD are 0/1. The odds shoot up to 1.8. Then Jayawardene and Sehwag play some shots for score to be 26/1 in 4.2 overs, and appears that DD are on course. A worthwhile partnership appears to be in the offing, there having been such partnerships on view in last matches, some of those after fall of early wicket/s. The odds fall back to 1.57. Were huge bets placed backing DD then? The action that followed in the field would indicate so. But it could be so designed from the beginning also, to manipulate session scoring. Jayawardene decides to get out, and Sehwag follows him on the very next ball. SRH become the favourites with odds of 1.6 or so in their favour. and remain favourites for most of the part in the match thereafter.

With Sehwag and Jayawardene hitting boundaries, most of the punters would place bets for runs on offer (at an average of 7 an over) during this 0-10 overs session. With fall of these wickets and then Botha on the last ball of the 9th over, session scoring was so manipulated that the session score of 46 was (had to be) less than the minimum on offer any time during this session.

Wickets continued to fall at regular intervals, belying the hopes of revival thst surfaced now and then, for DD to score a miserly 114 in their 20 overs.

The experts considered the match to be over for DD, Sidhu telling in his style that this score would easily be chased 99 out of 100 times. Ishant Sharma, the SRH bowler came on the mic and told that it was a difficult wicket but they would chase down this small total easily (was he trying to justify for public consumption the harakiri by DD batsmen and ensuing harakiri by their own batsmen?). But the drama was far from over.

SRH lost their first wicket early through a run out, but then were a comfortable 43/1 in 7 overs with odds in their favour being around 1.15. In the 8th over 3 singles were taken of first 3 balls and Manjrekar in the commentary box was explaining how easy it was to score, especially singles, with the two left-handers on the crease, And soon enough, the wickets started falling. Now it was the turn of SRH batsmen to throw wickets inexplicably. Just see how Sangkara gives catching practice to Sehwag in the slips. With fall of White at 69 and the 5th wicket soon after at 71, the odds became very volatile, DD again becoming favourite just for some fleeting moments. Commentators started commenting as if DD would now win. Camera goes to SRH dug out and the commentator comments that the gloomy faces of SRH were such as if they had lost the match. This comment follows boundaries by the SRH batsmen.

with SRH at 89/5 in 16 overs, a wicket falls again, off the first ball after strategic time out. The odds on betfair show 1.8 in f/o SRH (jumped up from 1.3 before fall of wicket), and then 1.56 (at 90/6) even before a 4 is scored. At 96/6, odds come down to 1.38. At 100, they lose the key batsman at that stage, Perera, and Manjrekar comments, "Why do SRH not want to win?"  Then DD bowlers feed lose balls to SRH tailenders to enable them to win comfortably with 4 balls to spare.

The above just exemplifies how subtly the correlation between commentators' utterances and the actions (opposite) on the field takes place. If  one sees the recordings of matches critically, one would come across such things thousands of times and understand what I am talking about.

DD show and prove their devilry in losing the fourth consecutive match, two of those to much lower placed teams.

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