IPL 2014 May 17, 2014

Specialists in failure

The longest losing streaks in the IPL

The longest losing streaks in the IPL

7 - Delhi Daredevils, 2014

Delhi Daredevils (like Pune Warriors) are no strangers to piling up big losing streaks and their current run of seven games without a win is the fifth longest in the IPL. After the Daredevils bowlers set up an easy victory against Mumbai Indians, a combination of top-order failures, ineffective bowling, lack of composure at the death and the poor form of their star batsman Kevin Pietersen, culminated in the team succumbing to defeat after defeat after defeat. It all began when the tournament returned to India, with Daredevils losing four successive games at the Feroz Shah Kotla- including a failure to defend 179 against Chennai Super Kings - before being thumped by Royal Challengers Bangalore and Rajasthan Royals to end any faint hopes the team had of making the playoffs.

7 - Deccan Chargers, 2008

With a powerful batting arsenal boasting the likes of Shahid Afridi, Herschelle Gibbs, Andrew Symonds, Adam Gilchrist and Scott Styris, scoring runs wasn't the problem for Deccan Chargers in the inaugural edition of the IPL. In fact, five times during their seven-match losing streak, the Chargers produced scores in excess of 150, but their largely feeble bowling attack was the cause for their downfall, leaking runs left, right and center, and contributing to the team finishing at the bottom of the table. Chargers eventually broke the sequence with a win in their first game of the 2009 season, against Kolkata Knight Riders in Cape Town; a victory that the team used as a springboard on their way to clinching the title that year.

7 - Delhi Daredevils, 2013-14

Pretty much anything that could go wrong, went wrong in the Daredevils' 2013 campaign. An injury to Pietersen and a grievous assault on Jesse Ryder left the team without two of their big hitters, while Virender Sehwag missed a couple of games at the start due to back trouble. In the absence of a clear leader or an in-form player, the team capitulated, losing their last six games and finished bottom of the table for the second time in three seasons. Among a barrage of unwanted records, their main strike bowler Morne Morkel ended with an average of 47.85, and Umesh Yadav capped off a miserable season by leaking 508 runs, the most in IPL history. Defeat to Royal Challengers in Sharjah extended the Daredevils' losing run to seven, before the team broke the jinx by chasing down 167 in the last over against Knight Riders.

7 - Pune Warriors, 2011

Statistically the worst ever team in the IPL, the now defunct Pune Warriors began the first of their three big losing streaks in Mumbai, when their captain Yuvraj Singh's all-round effort against the Daredevils went in vain, allowing the visitors to chase down 188 in 19.2 overs. Another final-over defeat ensued against Mumbai Indians, but the team were beaten comprehensively in the next five games with the margins reading: 25 runs, eight wickets, 26 runs, six wickets, 21 runs. Unsurprisingly, Warriors finished joint bottom of the table with the Daredevils. The Warriors' losing run looked to be extending to eight when they were bowled out for 129 against Mumbai in their first game in 2012, but Ashok Dinda's four-wicket haul helped the team script an unlikely 28-run win.

8 - Delhi Daredevils, 2012-13

The Daredevils were the team to beat in 2012, winning 11 out of their 16 group games to top the table, but they ran out of steam towards the business end of the season, and back-to-back defeats to Mumbai Indians and Super Kings in the playoffs sent them home. Their sudden loss of form and confidence was carried forward even to the 2013 season, where the Daredevils lost their first six games. The team came close to snapping the record against Royal Challengers in Bangalore, where a batting collapse from the hosts resulted in a tie, but Daredevils ended up losing the one-over eliminator. Daredevils suffered another low soon after, folding for 83 chasing 170 against Super Kings in Delhi.

9 - Kolkata Knight Riders, 2009

The Knight Riders' 2009 outing in South Africa was one to forget, as a Super Over-defeat against the Royals paved the way for eight more losses. Notable lows included a 92-run thrashing at the hands of Mumbai, and a seven-wicket capitulation against Daredevils, which saw them slide to the bottom of the table. The run also included two last-ball heartaches, against Kings XI and the Chargers, which further dented their already dimnishing confidence. Perhaps the only positive the Knight Riders had during this sequence was an abandoned match against Super Kings, where defeat could have swelled their winless run to 10.

9 - Pune Warriors, 2013

The Warriors completed a hat-trick of shambolic seasons in the IPL with yet another lackluster display in 2013. Things were never looking up once their captain Michael Clarke pulled out of the tournament with a back injury, and experimenting with 26 players- including three captains- in 16 matches did little to help their cause by disrupting the balance. Dinda's death-bowling was a disaster, bringing to the fore several memes and jokes, while their main man Yuvraj also had a season to forget, with a highest score of just 34. Each of the Warriors' nine defeats would have hurt, but the 130-run mauling at the hands of Chris Gayle and the Royal Challengers will not be forgotten quickly. It was only fitting that a miserable season for the Warriors would end with the team soon being disbanded.

11 - Pune Warriors, 2012-13

That nine-game losing spree came not too long after they snapped an even longer spell without a win. The Warriors had started the 2012 season well enough with three wins out of four, but Ashish Nehra's meltdown in the final over against Royal Challengers was the start of a farcical campaign which ended with the team rooted at the bottom. The captain Sourav Ganguly was uninspiring, as the Warriors notched several lows such as losing twice to fellow strugglers Chargers, failing to chase 121 against Mumbai, and conceding a hat-trick to the (at the time) little-known Ajit Chandila on the way to a 45-run walloping from the Royals. The season could not end fast enough for the Warriors, not that 2013 would bring them any change in fortunes.

Anuj Vignesh is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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