Daredevils need to keep wickets in hand as they face Mumbai Indians test | ipl$dd | Hindustan Times
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Daredevils need to keep wickets in hand as they face Mumbai Indians test

In IPL 9, 13 of the 14 games have been won by sides batting second. Experts feel a target makes life easier for batsmen, helping them chalk out strategy.

ipl Updated: Apr 24, 2016 13:25 IST
Siddhartha Sharma
Quinton De Cock of Delhi Daredevils plays a shot against Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Quinton De Cock of Delhi Daredevils plays a shot against Royal Challengers Bangalore.(PTI Photo)

In IPL 9, 13 of the 14 games have been won by sides batting second. Experts feel a target makes life easier for batsmen, helping them chalk out strategy.

In 15 games, only six have seen par scores (160 or more), and in these the side batting first has rarely lost wickets in a bunch at crucial situations.

Ahead of the Delhi Daredevils match against Mumbai Indians, Daredevils middle-order batsman Karun Nair too felt the need to keep wickets batting first. “Keeping wickets in hand is what I would do,” he said.

In the six games where teams have managed over 160, there have been partnerships and fewer wickets have been lost at crucial intervals. For instance, KXIP made 161 against Gujarat Lions and the innings was studded with partnerships. Kolkata Knight Riders made 187 against Mumbai because three of their first four batsmen scored. Royal Challengers scored 227 against Sunrisers Hyderabad with Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers putting up a show, and the side scored 191 against Daredevils with the top order firing again.

“Batsmen have gone for too much batting first and have fallen behind. As the tournament progresses, the balance will shift,” said Nair.

His assessment is correct for the nine games that did not see a par score. In five of them, teams lost two or more wickets in power-play. Once that is the case, rebuilding is on the mind of batsmen. Mumbai lost four wickets against Pune, Daredevils lost four against Knight Riders, Sunrisers lost three against KKR and Mumbai lost two against Gujarat and Sunrisers.

While these games may highlight the haste right from the start, with batsmen unsure of what would be a par score, the remaining games show the importance of losing the plot at a crucial stage.

After building a foundation, KXIP lost David Miller and Glenn Maxwell in the same over to Gujarat’s Dwayne Bravo. Wriddhiman Saha couldn’t go with the flow and consumed 25 deliveries to score 20. Pune too experienced that as they lost three wickets in the space of 30 runs against Gujarat.

Mumbai all-rounder Keiron Pollard said it was not about batting first, as the pressure was no less batting second. “Batsmen chasing have a lot of pressure, yes, you know what you are chasing, but still you will have to go out and chase. If you lose a couple of wickets, you are on the back foot and might have to change your game. It is about giving important contributions,” he said.