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Deccan make things tough for themselves
by CricketArchive Staff Reporter


Player:ML Hayden, RP Singh, RG Sharma, Yuvraj Singh, AB de Villiers
Event:Indian Premier League 2009

DateLine: 18th May 2009

 

As the Indian Premier League enters its last week, some of the matches have rather tantalising consequences, while other have connotations that could well spell success or disaster for teams.

 

Take, for example, the cases of Deccan Chargers and Kings XI Punjab. Now, thanks to the largesse of the Hyderabad team, Punjab suddenly find themselves in the top four, having won an improbable one-run win over the Chargers.

 

Both sides have one game left in the league stage, but with the points now identical, 14 apiece from 13 games, its now quite a possibility that Chargers’ fate could be dependant not only on how Punjab do, but also how Rajasthan Royals and Bangalore Royal Challengers shape up.

 

In stark contrast, a win over Punjab would have taken Deccan to 16 points from the same number of games and given them a buffer.

 

On the other hand, Rajasthan and Bangalore would be looking for wins, the only way for them to go ahead. What make it all so much more appetising is the fact that Deccan meet Bangalore in the last game in the league, and the latter, with two games left, can still grab four points, and edge out either Deccan or Punjab.

 

Rajasthan also have one more opportunity to clamber into the last four, one game pending that can bring them to 15 points. But that would depend on how other sides do.

 

On the top of the table Delhi are there, and looking quite comfortable too. Eighteen points to the good, they are all set for the knockout, with the win over Punjab making it an easy ride from them in the last week of the league.

 

Chennai Super Kings would also like to believe that they would keep their appointment with the semis, though they still have to ensure at least one win, or ideally two, from their remaining games, against Kolkata Knight Riders and Punjab, which would really be the game to watch.

 

So essentially, with one week left, there is only one side, Delhi Daredevils, that can take the foot off the gas. All the others have a chance to make it, and more importantly, lose it. Of these, it would be a pity to see Chennai go down, it that happens, but that looks unlikely, since they have really come into their groove.

 

Punjab seem to have this roller-coaster psyche that works one day, then does to sleep. By elimination, they may still win another game.

 

Bangalore suddenly seem to have been out of action for a long time, but they have suddenly realised what winning is, and that may serve them well, while Rajasthan Royals have a remote outside chance.

 

So essentially, it is Kolkata and Mumbai Indians who would be packing their bags earliest, and that’s a pity.

 

But if Deccan Chargers were to lose out, they would deserve it. They relinquished to matches from potentially winning positions, and almost gave it away against Kolkata too, had it not been for Rohit Sharma.

 

The week also saw Yuvraj Singh snatching one more hat-trick, as Deccan gifted Punjab a win. Given that it’s he and Sharma who are the hat-trick men of the IPL, the specialists would be wondering what they’d have to do.

 

Rudra Pratap Singh regained the Purple Cap, while Matthew Hayden has not intentions of relinquishing the orange headgear. AB de Villiers still is the most dependable of the lot though, but Virender Sehwag better be prepared for the time when the law of averages catches up with either De Villiers or Tillekeratne Dilshan, or even Dinesh Karthik.

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