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Monday, April 16, 2012

Tendulkar set to return for Mumbai Indians against Daredevils

IT WOULDN’T be a stretch to say that on paper, at least, the Delhi Daredevils look the most improved side in the Indian Premier League since last season.
Two solid wins have sandwiched below-average display in Bangalore last week, but it is on Monday the Daredevils will face their toughest challenge yet when they take on a Mumbai Indians side that, along with league leaders Pune Warriors India, is looking the most potent in the competition.
A win on Monday will take the Daredevils to the top of the table after four games, given their strong net run rate of + 0.820, while Mumbai too will get past Pune if they win, albeit having played one more game.
Mumbai slipped up once when they couldn’t chase down a paltry run target against Pune but Harbhajan Singh’s team has been force to reckon with, despite the absence of Sachin Tendulkar due to a finger injury for the last three games. The Mukesh Ambani-owned franchise beat defending champions Chennai Super Kings the opening match of the season, and also notched up resounding wins against Deccan Chargers and Rajasthan Royals.
Their main strength have been their bowlers, with Munaf Patel, Lasith Malinga and Kieron Pollard being the top three wicket-takers thus far in the league. The likes of Rohit Sharma and Pollard have stepped their game and played match-winning knocks

Cheerleaders and Celebrities at IPL-5

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Calm Rohit stars as Mumbai Indians steal win over Deccan Chargers

Rohit Sharma anchored Mumbai Indians' chase of 139 against Deccan Chargers brilliantly at the ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium in Visakhapatnam on Monday night as Dale Steyn ended on the losing side despite a brilliant bowling performance. Mumbai Indians needed 18 runs to win from the last over of the match bowled by Dan Christian, but Rohit hit two sixes, including one in the last delivery to steal a five-wicket win for his team and get them back to winningw ays.

There was also a hint of controversy in the dismissal of Deccan Chargers' captain Kumar Sangakkara; but despite that unfortunate event, this was the kind of match the fifth edition of the Indian Premier League desperately needed.

Steyn gave the Chargers the perfect start when he brilliantly caught T Suman off his own bowling and then bowled an excellent maiden over to his South African counterpart Richard Levi before clean bowling him with a swinging yorker to leave Mumbai Indians tottering at 10 for 2 after four overs. The fourth over of Mumbai Indians' innings bowled by Steyn saw him showcase his wide range of deliveries including good length, slow ones, bouncers and a slightly short delivery. The young left-arm spinner Ankit Sharma (0-18) also kept things tight at the other end and conceded only nine runs in his first three overs.

The introduction of Christian into the attack though eased the pressure on Mumbai Indians as Rohit hit him for a boundary and a massive six over deep extra cover in his first over that cost the Chargers 14 runs. Rohit was also lucky when on 23, his attempted heave over midwicket off an Anand Rajan delivery just evaded a diving Steyn at third man.
Rohit Sharma plays a shot during the IPL Twenty20 match against Deccan Chargers. (AFP/Getty Images)

Monday, April 9, 2012

IPL Mood Swings - Funny Movements

Sachin might play tomorrow: Ojha

MI’s Pragyan Ojha, who has played in both the games so far, caught up with the media before the match against his former team tomorrow. 

Excerpts from his interaction:

On coming back to Vizag

I have played a lot of cricket here [in Andhra Pradesh]. Right from Under-15, I have been playing here. It’s a great feeling to be back. 

On Sachin Tendulkar’s injury

I think he is recovering very well. The way things are looking, management will take a call tomorrow. Most likely he is going to play. The response is very positive, and we are hopeful that he will play this game. 

On the Deccan Chargers

I think it’s very important that you don’t take any team for granted. Deccan Chargers are a very good side. I was part of them for the past four years. I know the side. They are very talented. As a professional, I believe we shouldn’t be taking it easy. We should give it our best and see that we have a good game. 

On playing for the Mumbai Indians

Playing for Mumbai [Indians], it is a very good side. When I see myself playing for Mumbai Indians, it really motivates me a lot. When you play for a side that has so many match-winners, it really encourages you. The way the guys are playing, I would love to be a part of them and win games for them.

On the Vizag wicket

From what I saw [from the match last night], it was turning and holding up a bit. Definitely, it is encouraging for all the spinners who are playing here tomorrow. I am looking forward to it.

On the mood in the camp after the loss against PWI

It’s in the initial stages [of the tournament]. In a way, it has made us more focussed. I believe that with the team we have, we should do really well in this tournament. 

On what advice he would give Harbhajan Singh should the MI captain win the toss

I personally feel it would be good if we bat first. But he [Harbhajan] has a lot of experience behind him, he has seen a lot of wickets in India and he is the best person to make the decision. 

KXIP's Bansal in code of conduct breach

Harmeet Singh Bansal from the Kings XI Punjab team received an official warning and reprimand for breaching the DLF Indian Premier League (IPL) Code of Conduct during his team’s match against Pune Warriors India in Pune last night.
Mr Bansal pleaded guilty to a Level 1 offence (Article 2.1.8), for a breach of Match Playing Conditions clause 42.4.2 when he bowled two high full pitched balls during the 19th over of the Pune Warriors India innings. For Level 1 breaches of the IPL Code of Conduct, the IPL Match Referee’s decision is final and binding.