Sunday, May 12, 2013

Playing to Lose Again

Kolkata Knight Riders 152/6 (20/20 ov); Pune Warriors 106 (19.3/20 ov)
Kolkata Knight Riders won by 46 runs

 PW have been playing their matches for the purpose of losing. It has been too obvious. This match was no exception.

The starting odds were about 1.8 in f/o KKR. These came down fast to 1.35 just after 5 overs with KKR at 44/0. That was abnormal and the odds rising to only 1.52 after fall of two quick wickets and score at 52/2 in 7 overs was also abnormal. Normally the odds should have come back to the starting odds i.e. above 1.7 at least. For the wise, this should have been an indication about the outcome of the match, a comfortable win for KKR. 

The manipulation in session scoring during KKR innings took place as usual. With sudden deceleration in  scoring after the 5th over, the score at the end of the first session (0-10 overs) was such as to be less than the minimum score on offer at any point. The opposite happened for the next 10-20 overs session as a result of 53 runs (15 in the last over) scored in the last 4 overs.

Inexplicably Marsh bowled only 2 overs for 7/2 in the innings, while the other bowlers went for runs in the end.

Some more interesting observations. In the 11th over of PW innings, Uthapa played a shot up in the air, but the ball fell between two fielders. The batsmen took only a single while there was a comfortable two. The next ball Uthapa faced, after a single to Mathews, he gave a simple catch straight to backward point. I am sure a senior in-form batsman could not have played so if playing natural cricket. That was virtually the end of the chase for PW who eventually folded for pathetic 106 runs, never having looked back after having lost first wicket in the 3rd over.

It was also worth watching how Mathews fetches the ball from outside the off stump to give a catch straight in the hands of the lone deep long-on fielder.


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