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Payback time for bowlers

Bowlers have been at their lethal best in the past week or so, picking up a hattrick of hattricks, besides forcing the lowest total in the IPL. Subhash Rajta reports.

cricket Updated: May 20, 2008 00:43 IST
Subhash Rajta

Bowlers have been at their lethal best in the past week or so, picking up a hattrick of hattricks, besides forcing the lowest total in the IPL.

It all began in Chennai on May 10 with Laxmipathy Balaji picking up the first hattrick against Mohali. Amit Mishra repeated the feat against Hyderabad a couple of days later at the Ferozeshah Kotla. Virender Sehwag threw the ball to the leggie in the last over with Hyderabad requiring 15 to win the match. It was a gamble for not long back a similar move had resulted in disaster for Delhi when Manpreet Gony smashed Shoaib Malik in the last over to pull off an improbable win Chennai. But Mishra responded brilliantly to seal victory for his team.

Makhaya Ntini came to the party on Sunday by destroying Kolkata. His was perhaps the best effort in the sense that the other two efforts came when the batsmen had no choice but to go after the bowlers. But Ntini sliced through the Kolkata top order.

The bowlers also recorded another triumph this week when Shaun Pollock and Co bowled out Kolkata for the lowest total of 67.

Apart from the hattricks, there were some outstanding spells like the one from Shoaib Akhtar where he picked up four wickets to destroy Delhi and successfully defended a small total of 133.

A few days back, Mohali coach Tom Moody had said bowlers would have to explore new methods to get back at the batsmen. He had suggested perfecting yorkers, slower balls and bringing in more variation for more effectiveness.
He sounded quite impressed on Monday by the way the bowlers has clawed their way back. "It's pretty impressive the way they have bowled recently. After being carted around initially, they have found their way back," he said.