IPL 2012 May 21, 2012

More spills than thrills

The amateurish fielding and a lack of bowling support for Dale Steyn left Deccan Chargers bottom of the table for most of the season

Where they finished

Second from bottom. A second successive season of disappointment ended with four wins and 11 defeats. Deccan Chargers were one of the tournament's two whipping boys, languishing at the bottom for most part.

Key player

From an Indian perspective, it was pleasing to see an Indian batsman top the run charts. Shikhar Dhawan finished with 569 runs with five fifties and was second behind Chris Gayle (733) in the tournament standings at the end of the league phase. Chargers have depended on him for strong starts, though they could have fared better had he received more support from his more experienced colleagues. It was a continuation of his good form the previous season, when he scored 400 runs. Dhawan has been on the fringes of national selection and his performance this season should nudge the national selectors when they pick the side for the World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka.

Bargain buy

Ashish Reddy, the Hyderabad seamer, was identified by the coach Darren Lehmann as one of the promising newcomers to watch. Reddy finished with 11 wickets and was the third-highest wicket-taker for Chargers. Pace may not be Reddy's forte, but he made up for it with his military medium pace and legcutters which made him difficult to get away on slower pitches.

Flop buy

Parthiv Patel was their most expensive buy at the auction ($650,000), but the wicketkeeper-batsman failed to live up to his billing. He managed only 194 runs in 13 innings with no half-centuries, despite opening the batting on six occasions.


In a season with few happy memories, their final league game against Royal Challengers Bangalore in Hyderabad saved them the embarrassment of finishing last. Royal Challengers needed to win to progress to the playoffs, but Chargers launched a spirited fightback, led by a pumped-up Dale Steyn who delivered the spell of the season, to defend a modest 132 against a powerful top order. The win meant that Pune Warriors were the wooden-spoon holders of the season.


The start of the tournament. It took seven games for Chargers to record their first win. It included five consecutive defeats and a washed-out game, which gave them their first points. From then, it was always going to be difficult to bounce back. Their biggest embarrassment was the fielding, which botched their chances of closing out games. It was routine to see a helpless Lehmann appear at press conferences blaming the defeats on schoolboy errors in the field. On one occasion, he said his team fielded like an Under-14 side. Chargers had Trevor Penney, a sought-after fielding coach, on their coaching staff, but it didn't have the desired impact.


Chargers' performance wasn't terribly surprising considering they started the tournament as underdogs. Four of their first five games went into the last over, including Mumbai Indian's freakish last-ball finish. Against Rajasthan Royals, they failed to defend 196. The loss of points from those games derailed them early.

Besides Dhawan, none of the Indians made a significant impact. Steyn was deadly in conditions that suited him and his spells were among the fastest seen on Indian pitches. Sangakkara struggled for consistency, and ended up drop himself for several matches.

Looking ahead, Chargers will have to rethink their squad. It wouldn't be a bad idea to negotiate with other franchises and invest in a few quality Indian players who've had few opportunities. A quality bowler to support Steyn will be handy.

Kanishkaa Balachandran is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Arul on May 24, 2012, 15:15 GMT

    How can you miss Cameron White, who finally found his touch after years.

  • haree on May 23, 2012, 6:03 GMT

    essential players dale steyn, ishant sharma, pragyan ojha, shikar dhawan, rohit sharma, white. please how the hell can u buy parthiv patel???, loose rohit and ojha. for the rest can handpick cheaper players. the above 6 r essential in every match. with the above combi i cant see dc not winning the trophy. owners spent well and bid max in first auction, whereas in second auction they spent miserly and lost good players, as if wanting to be in the bottom. coach is quite a motivator, i dont think we should change the coach.

  • Dummy4 on May 23, 2012, 5:58 GMT

    Why don't they replace Parthiv with Wriddiman Saha from Chennai Super Kings, arguable one of the best wicket keeper and high scorer batsman of Indian Domestic Cricket. He can also score runs quickly.Abhinav Mukund, Arun Karthik & Subramaniam Badrinath all are warmed in benches while teams like Rajasthan, Deccan, Kings XI Punjab & Delhi Daredevils who all were short of Indian Batsmen

  • Dummy4 on May 22, 2012, 18:42 GMT

    I think deccan chargers have a big mistake to drop hershelle gibbs,r sharma,harmeet sing,and BOWLER harris if they were not lost this all players then they have a good team...in the next season if rohit sharma and andrew symonds and BOWLER harris i dont know if dc lose or win i will support dc only go!!!dc chargers go!!!!!! IN THE NEXT IPL THEY HAVEA GOOD PERFORMANCE....go!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Dummy4 on May 22, 2012, 13:49 GMT

    Please group all your season review of all the teams together.. Right now they are all scattered.

  • Dummy4 on May 22, 2012, 11:30 GMT

    DC needed Theron this season for all games.

  • Ramakrishna on May 22, 2012, 9:18 GMT

    The actual problem with DC is selection of Players. For success in T20 there should be atleast two fast Bowling Allrounders which DC is missing. bowling is a major concern. Dc should consider purchasing players from pakistan when they are available. It should sell player like Christian not pietersen. Pl consider in purchasing quality domestic players from other franchisees who are not able to get the enough opportunity in this season. It should consider the option of changing the head coach and fielding Coach.Hope good show in future season.

  • aditya on May 22, 2012, 7:41 GMT

    i am a dc fan i think they should invest in some foreign biggies like grame swann and james anderson or even ravi bopara as an all rounder. even micheal klinger who is valuable at no.4 with hs of 78 runs. As far as the indian contiegnt goes t.suman, rohit sharma, srikanth anirudha, ambati rayudu and even badrinath could strengthen their lineup to become a more formidable side

  • Dummy4 on May 22, 2012, 7:34 GMT

    This team lost matches because of its bowling in last 3-5 overs. Couldve won 3 games if the bowling was just a little bit better, we gave 18 in 6 balls to mi, 16 in 6 to dd & had rcb smash 69 runs in 3.5 overs!. The batting is a big worry also, other than dhawan who performed remarkably with 569runs in 15 games. There werent any bright spots other than cameron white who after a few slow games really picked it up and scored 479 in 13 & the rest were sub par. Duminy 244, sanga 200 & then we have the 2nd highest indian player with patel at 194 in 14games. christian 145 in 7, dj harris 111 in 4 & the 3rd highest indian scorer pa reddy with 73 runs in 5 matches!!!

    This team needs better indian batting talent, guys like chipli, jaggi, jhunjhunwala arent going to score if top order fails. I say cut christian like they did with kemar roach, throws team balance out of whack due to playing him cause of his price tag. Steyn, white, sanga, duminy for foreign players, switch if you need bowler.

  • Satish on May 22, 2012, 6:34 GMT

    The two overseas slots in White and Steyn were great and coupled with Dhawan and Parthiv a bit formed a formidable batting lineup.. They could have done lot better had they given the fourth overseas slot to Theron.. I was wondering why Harris got so much chance and not Theron while Dhawan and White were in magical form.. Veer P Singh and Asish reddy pulled out much above their weight and did more than what was expected from them.. Mishra was a failure in all the lost games and as if he wanted CSK to make it to playoffs, reformed dramatically in last couple of games :-) One extra Indian batsman will solve the problems of Deccan.. Wished Rohit Sharma stayed with Deccan and the result could have been a lot different.. Or had they not traded Pragyan Ojha too!

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