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Plays of the day from the IPL match between Kings XI Punjab and Mumbai Indians in Dharamsala
May 18, 2013
Adam Gilchrist has a T20 bowling average of zero, has a strike rate of 1, and the gratitude of the smiles he brought to people's faces.
Gilchrist has shown lovely self-deprecation about his IPL retirement last year. Having come out of retirement, having finished another season, he said it was highly unlikely any team will go for a 42-year-old now that the existing contracts are over.
Then having all but won the match, he took off his hat, asked Praveen Kumar to keep wicket and came on to bowl the last over of the match. Offbreak was his weapon, Harbhajan Singh the victim. He was also the last man in, because Dhawal Kulkarni after him was injured.
Gilchrist bowled flattish, on off, in Harbhajan's arc, who swung hard. But the bottom hand came off the handle, and he holed out to long-on. Joyful celebrations kicked off. Gurkeerat Singh, the catcher, laughed in an unbelieving manner. Gilchrist went on to mimic Kieron Pollard's trademark celebration and improvised on Harbhajan's version of the Gangnam-style. No bitterness was involved, though. He said he forgot to do Darren Sammy's "rock-the-baby" dance. Gilly, you beauty.
Piyush Chawla might be the same height as Sunil Gavaskar, but he doesn't have the same nous. Not with the bat at any rate. Off the penultimate ball off Kings XI Punjab's innings, when he ran back for a difficult second he didn't bother about grounding his bat. The throw was wide, which had given him time to make it, but he was run out even though his bat was over the line but in the air.
A new batsman, Praveen Kumar, faced the last ball, and his stump went for a walk.
Gilchrist flopped with the bat on his final day, but enjoyed the commentary while keeping. The reactions were superb. When Aditya Tare pulled Azhar Mahmood for a flat six, the mic was not off, and we could hear the "ooooooo", which suggested both disappointment and praise for the shot. Immediately he said, "That was the ball I was expecting from Coulter-Nile."
Making his IPL debut, Nathan Coulter-Nile had earlier bowled Gilchrist on the pull with a ball that was not short enough for the shot.
In the fourth over of the chase, Tare lofted Sandeep Sharma for a straight six. It was not a half-volley. It was taken on the up, and picked up on the up. That can be a demoralising sight for the bowler, who has done nothing wrong. Sandeep, though, came back with a similar delivery with the subtle difference of seaming it back in to beat the inside edge and flatten two of Tare's stumps.
Gilchrist might be retiring, but he showed his eyes and hands were working all right. Chawla bowled Rohit Sharma with a quicker ball, which took a big deflection off the top of the off stump, but straight into Gilchrist's gloves.
Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfoFeeds: Sidharth Monga
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