Two home games, two defeats. Now all of a sudden even a place in the semis looks not that sure. However, it’s too early and it will be only too naive to try to spot the semi-finalists so soon, as proved by the humbling of the ‘mighty Mumbai Indians’.
The stand-in skipper Karthik won the toss and chose to bat (as advised). Warner and Sehwag trotted out and Sehwag stuck into the bowling attack a-prompt. Warner never got going and an ill-advised across the line nothing shot sent him on his way. Sehwag, meanwhile, continued to blossom and Dilshan’s drudgery went unnoticed. Dilshan finally perished with a SR of 60 and Sehwag soon followed following some brilliant catching from Kemp. The catch- eerily resembling his very own effort in an ICL match. 74 off 38 was what he had achieved and when AB holed out to Raina, the team had slipped from 102/1 to 107/4. Karthik, Manhas, Bhatia all did their bit and 185 was the score to defend.
AB ran out Parthiv but more importantly (and worryingly), it was the bowlers who were running out of ideas as Hayden found his old monstrous touch with the help of a mongoose bat. Nannes gave away just 6 from 2 overs but the score had reached 50 by the end of the 5th. The situation was desperate and even though Badri went, Raina and Haydos (93 from 43) showed no signs of letting up. A couple of wickets fell towards the end and an excellent Nannes final over gave Delhi a semblance of a chance as the situation read ’16 from 12′. Sangwan, with the help of bad lengths, laid those hopes to rest and the home team collapsed to a consecutive defeat.
Looking back-> In the 1st IPL edition, AB was run-out in his first match. Subsequently, he failed with the bat through out the series. This time around, it has been a similar case.
The ploy to bring in Dilshan when Sehwag goes, and AB when Gambhir goes worked well in IPL-2. With Gambhir’s well-documented hate of AB, this system seems to have gone out the window.
Looking ahead-> Sehwag and Gambhir appear too casual to be decent captains. Anyone willing to see Dan-the-man lead the line?
Inner team battles:
Sehwag (2) vs Dilshan (1)