IPL theme: Slow pitches & thrillers | india | Hindustan Times
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IPL theme: Slow pitches & thrillers

No team has yet touched 200 runs in the IPL-II. Just one century has been seen. It’s a curious statistic in a format which is innovating and improvising constantly. Shorter boundaries, heavy bats, lightning quick outfields and yet 200 is still a mirage, writes Ravi Shastri.

india Updated: May 02, 2009 00:50 IST
Ravi Shastri

No team has yet touched 200 runs in the IPL-II. Just one century has been seen. It’s a curious statistic in a format which is innovating and improvising constantly. Shorter boundaries, heavy bats, lightning quick outfields and yet 200 is still a mirage.

Two themes have been noticeable. One, the pitches in South Africa, after a season of use, are now worn out. So despite rollicking starts the scoring retards in the middle overs.

Scoring quickly against spinners with spread fields is a sticky proposition. The middle order feels the heat once openers have fired. In trying to maintain or up the tempo, they tend to take more risks. And falter.

AB de Villiers and Tillakaratne Dilshan have been exceptions and Suresh Raina is hitting his straps, but teams are struggling for consistent middle-order batsmen.

Spinners, pitches and expectations are all combining to take a toll. In a curious manner, what spectators have lost out in terms of big boundaries, they have gained in the matter of close finishes. There will be more edge-of-the-seat thrillers ahead.