Have you been too busy studying for your exams to take note of what has been going on in the IPL? Or have you been too engrossed in searching for a job to know who has hit the most ‘DLF Maximums’ over the past week? Maybe all your time is being taken up by stalking your ex-boyfriend; or you could just be some closeted IPL fan who likes to keep up appearances by publicly denouncing the ‘pajama cricket’ but want to know how your favorite IPL team is doing?
Never fear. For the attention-deficit IPL fan in you, I present to you ‘The Plunder Games’ – a weekly recap of all the IPL action. Here, you can catch up with all the past week’s action in just 10 minutes.
Game 44: KXIP vs RCB
Kings XI Punjab 163 for 6 (Saini 50, Hussey 45, Mandeep 43) beat Royal Challengers Bangalore 158 for 5 (Gayle 71, Kohli 45, Mahmood 3-20) by four wickets
Match in 140 characters: PK and Mahmood restrict RCB to 158 despite another Gayle 50; freak run outs threaten to derail easy chase, but Chawla takes KXIP home
Charlie Sheen Winning Moment: KXIP should never have had to sweat in the closing stages of the game, after the impressive performance of their seamers and their top order batsmen; but there they were, inducing themselves into a state of panic after some tight bowling by RCB in the final overs. With 2 runs needed off 2 deliveries, it needed the much maligned Piyush Chawla to deliver the winning moment with a thumping hit over long on.
Viagra Performer of the day: Azhar Mahmood continued his impressive performance in the IPL, bagging the MOM award for his efforts; but he reaped the rewards of Praveen Kumar’s highly skilled opening spell where he conceded only 8 runs off his stipulated overs, which was bowled to the likes of Gayle and Kohli.
Game 45: PWI vs MI
Mumbai Indians 120 for 9 (Tendulkar 34, Bhuvneshwar 2-9, Nehra 2-19) beat Pune Warriors 119 for 6 (Manhas 42*, Harbhajan 2-18, Malinga 2-25) by one run
Match in 140 characters: MI huff and puff to 120 as the Warriors keep them on a tight leash; in response Bhajji and co pay them back, as Pune fall short by one run
#TrottsFault: Long time Dada fans won’t like to hear it; but Ganguly has nothing left to offer on the field. He is still one of the better leaders in the IPL, but it time he thought of mentoring the side, a la Shaun Pollock or Stephen Fleming. His stagnant knock never got the Warriors anywhere, and only made the chase more difficult. It is time for one of the country’s greats to leave gracefully.
Viagra Performer of the day: Whisper it, but it looks like Harbhajan Singh might just be returning to his best as a bowler. For the second game running, he bowled with control and picked crucial wickets to keep the Mumbai Indians in the driver’s seat throughout the Warriors’ innings.
Best tweet of the day: MIndians slowing down as they are about to reach yet another 3 figure mark. *Mandatory alert* (by @KnightsDen)
Game 46: CSK vs DC
Chennai Super Kings 160 for 6 (du Plessis 42) beat Deccan Chargers 150 for 5 (White 77) by 10 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
Match in 140 characters: CSK get off to a bright start, only to stumble in second half to 160; White and Dhawan lead spirited response, but all-round CSK seal a win
Charlie Sheen Winning Moment: When Sangakarra joined White at the crease, the game was wide open, with the Chargers slightly ahead. So, when Raina took a blinder of a catch to get rid of the Chargers skipper, it was advantage CSK as White and co could not build any sort of winning momentum after that.
Viagra Performer of the day: Cameron White continued his good form with the bat, as his defiant 77 was all that kept the Chargers in the game. He almost never made it past his first ball, when he was dropped by Morkel off his own bowling but he didn’t quite make CSK pay for that.
Best tweet of the day: Albie Morkel is that habitual movie late-comer, who has arrived 2 hours early for the matinee show today to make amends. (by @knittins)
Game 47: KKR vs PWI
Kolkata Knight Riders 150 for 5 (Gambhir 56, Mathews 2-17) beat Pune Warriors 143 for 8 (de lange 3-34, Narine 1-13) by seven runs
Match in 140 characters: Gambhir and Mac get off to a flyer before Warriors fight back to restrict KKR to 150; despite all round Mathews, PWI fall short by 7 runs
#TrottsFault: Once upon a time, Yusuf Pathan was the most feared Indian batsman in IPL. Now, he is barely a shadow of that figure, as it looks like he is desperately trying to get himself dropped from the remaining games. Another listless batting performance was followed by poor bowling which almost got PWI back in the game. KKR’s successful run is keeping the detractors at bay for now, but he has to get his act together before he becomes another forgotten man of Indian cricket.
Viagra Performer of the day: No batsman has been able to decode Sunil Narine till now, as his impressive run continues. This time, he kept bamboozling one of the past masters of spin, Ganguly to effectively seal the game in KKR’s favor. As the World T20 championship looms on friendly pitches, international coaches will have to get cracking if they are to stop this man from tying their batsmen in knots.
Game 48: RR vs KXIP
Rajasthan Royals 177 for 6 (Dravid 46, Harris 4-34) beat Kings XI Punjab 134 for 8 (Tait 2-18, Botha 2-21, Watson 2-22) by 43 runs
Match in 140 characters: Dravid’s class, Menaria’s slogs, Hodge’s swings and Watson’s all round show lead the Royals to a convincing win over the Kings XI
Viagra Performer of the day: Shane Watson was always the big marquee player for the Royals, but a combination of enforced absence due to national duties and the brilliance of the Dravid-Rahane combination, had kept him from the IPL spotlight all season; Against the Kings XI, he reminded everyone of his utility, as his domineering performance with the bat and miserly spell with the ball sealed an easy win for Dravid’s men.
Game 49: CSK vs MI
Mumbai Indians 174 for 8 (Tendulkar 74, Rohit 60, Smith 24*) beat Chennai Super Kings 173 for 8 (Vijay 41, Bravo 40, Malinga 3-25) by two wickets
Match in 140 characters: Its the game of the season, as Vijay, Raina, Sachin and Rohit light up the game; but the star is Dwayne Smith who steals the game from CSK
Charlie Sheen Winning Moment: While it was Dwayne Smith who hogged all the glory in the end, one should not forget two brilliant last overs from RP Singh and Malinga which yielded just 13 runs. In the final context of the game, that ensured a target which the Mumbai Indians just about managed to chase.
Viagra Performer of the day: While Sachin rolled back the years and Rohit continued to dazzle with his IPL form, it was Dwayne Smith who was playing his first game this season, who displayed a tremendous calm, that even Dhoni would be proud of , to swat a 6 and two 4s off the final three deliveries to seal a last ball heist, which is becoming something of an MI trademark.
Game 50: RCB vs DC
Royal Challengers Bangalore 185 for 5 (Dilshan 71, de Villiers 47*) beat Deccan Chargers 181 for 2 (Dhawan 73*, Harris 47, White 45) by five wickets
Match in 140 characters: Dhawan n White take DC to a tough total; Dilshan leads the chase with a rapid 50, but it is de Villiers’ mental hitting which seals the deal
Viagra Performer of the day: If there was any doubts as to de Villiers’ legendary status before this game, his manic knock of 47 from 17 balls would have put those to rest. Many batsmen can score the same amount of runs or more, in the same number of deliveries; but in the context of the game, to hit such audacious shots off one of the finest bowlers in the game at such a critical stage requires an exorbitant amount of confidence in one’s own skills – and de Villiers possesses that in abundance.
Game 51: DD vs KKR
Kolkata Knight Riders 154 for 4 (McCullum 56, Gambhir 36) beat Delhi Daredevils 153 for 9 (Pathan 36, Kallis 2-20) by six wickets
Match in 140 characters: Kallis and Narine restrict DD to 153; KKR top order ensure easy win despite late hiccups..
#TrottsFault: In the absence of KP and early dismissal of Sehwag, much was expected from Jayawardene and Ross Taylor. While Jayawardene has been in decent form, the Kiwi skipper hasn’t really got going this IPL. A tortuous innings of 16 runs from 27 deliveries meant that DD had to struggle to post a competitive total, which was comfortably chased down by KKR.
Charlie Sheen Winning Moment: Virender Sehwag came into this game on the back of five consecutive half centuries. Once again, he started like a freight train, racing to 23 off 9 deliveries, before Kallis struck to take him out. The Daredevils never got going after that.
Game 52: PWI vsRR
Rajasthan Royals 126 for 3 (Watson 90*) beat Pune Warriors 125 for 6 (Majumdar 30, Tait 3-13) by seven wickets
Match in 140 characters: Pune’s listless batting form continues as Tait helps restrict them to 125; In response, a merciless Watson takes the Royals to an easy win
#TrottsFault: Who else, but the man who refuses to go away gracefully. Ganguly promoted himself to the opening slot but could only gather an unconvincing 14, which robbed the Warriors of any momentum.
Viagra Performer of the day: Shane Watson completed another terrific day at the office, as his scathing unbeaten 90 demolished any hopes the Warriors may have had of winning the game.
Best tweet of the game: “Ashish Nehra has a big heart!” FOUR. “Ashish Nehra will keep trying.” SIX. (by @sidin)
Game 53: DC vs KXIP
Kings XI Punjab 170 for 5 (Mandeep 75) beat Deccan Chargers 145 for 8 (Hussey 2-2, Praveen 2-15, Awana 2-27) by 25 runs
Match in 140 characters: Mandeep’s impressive run continues as KXIP post a challenging 170; a middle order implosion by the Chargers ensure a no contest.
Charlie Sheen Winning Moment: When David Hussey brought himself on to bowl, the game was in the balance. In the space of four deliveries, he ensured the game was virtually over when he took the scalps of the well set Harris and the dangerous White.
Viagra Performer of the day: Mandeep Singh has been one of the breakout Indian players this IPL; his punishing knock of 75 ensured that the Chargers would have to chase a tricky target. More performances like these would not hurt him one bit, as the selectors are on the look out for fresh talent.
Best tweet of the week:
How do you put an elephant inside a fridge? Open Fridge. Get Ramesh Powar out. Put elephant in fridge. (by @thecricketcouch)