Indian Premier League 2010 April 18, 2010

Kings XI Punjab loss haunting us

If we are left with nothing, and our match against Mumbai Indians turns out to be a matter of statistical interest, we will still try to end on a happy note

As I write this column, none of the two matches slated for Sunday has started. Both are crucial for Kolkata Knight Riders' existence in the tournament, but I have to keep the deadline set for my write-up.

We will strive to live up to our potential in our last match and would love to sign off in style. If we do get the opportunity to reach the last four of the tournament, we will indeed try to give it our best shot. If we are left with nothing, and our match against Mumbai Indians turns out to be a matter of statistical interest, we will still try to end on a happy note, giving our fans something to cheer about. I know the fans will be feeling the pinch, about been so near yet so far. We too are feeling it. In hindsight, the Kings XI Punjab match and a few others are haunting us. When one is left in a situation depending on others then the feeling is more hapless.

Against Rajasthan Royals, our bowlers got it right. It was a much improved display from what we dished out against Royal Challengers Bangalore and Chennai Super Kings. The result was there for everyone to see as we restricted Rajasthan to a small total. The fielding and catching, except for a few hiccups here and there, was definitely of the highest order. Laxmi Ratan Shukla and my catch lifted the side and we could comeback strongly even after Rajasthan got off to a flier after winning the toss.

We did have the run-rate in mind when we went out to bat but were pushed back a bit by the loss of Brendon McCullum and Chris Gayle in the same over. Cheteshwar Pujara seized the opportunity and played a magnificent knock. He did not let the pressure build at all. This is one guy, I believe, about whom we will hear a lot in the future. I have complete trust in his ability and feel sorry I have not been able to use him properly in the tournament, as we did not have the going smooth all the time. On a personal front the going with the bat has not been bad at all, considering I started to open only from the fifth match. A lot of people are also surprised by my fielding. I am not, because it is just the reflection of the hard work put in throughout the year. That's what makes it more frustrating. We were not so bad a team that we had to depend on others to know our fate. But there is still a silver lining, as our team slogan says, miles to go and promises to keep.

(Professional Management Group)

Sourav Ganguly led India in 49 Tests between 2000 and 2005, winning 21

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  • Shuddhashil on April 20, 2010, 6:32 GMT

    Good Lord..!!!!there are so many ppl here who think that the reason for all losses is Ganguly, his slow strike rate. Guys open your eyes to CRICKET, and nt CRITICISM..this is CRICINFO, not CRITIQINFO!!!You r blaming Ganguly for scoring 450 RUNS,slowly, and you want him to let those people bat,who havnt SCORED RUNS AT ALL!!!!!answer me this, did KKR lose to Punjab for strike rate,or to Bangalore for Ganguly..whiile he was batting KKR ws 110 in 11 overs!!! @vimalan : ur even r writing sentimental BS, about treating peers as equal,OH SPARE ME THE HORROR f treating Pujara,Tiwary,Mcullum and Gayle as Ganguly's equal..this aint an Astha Channel blog!!! You'r now blaming him for taking good catches!!!and some intelligent dude NAYEEM _KOHIR says DROP HIM,He IS A GOOD PLAYER, not a GREAT ONE!!!!HAHAHAH!!!! M sure you guys should be coach of MI, then yuo guys would drop Sachin probably, just to prove ur nt BIASED!!!Best of luck to your cricket watching careers!!

  • Vimalan on April 19, 2010, 21:10 GMT

    @mephisto dude, I was a big fan of Ganguly during his playing days but am fed up with this attitude towards his team mates in this IPL...they way he criticizes his own team in the media. That's not what a good leader is. In many matches, although he scored, his strike rate has been a major problem for the team. Agreed, he was supposed to steady the innings around the hitters but when his fans go gaga over his performance its important to understand what his real contributions are. And its certainly not the characteristic of a leader to praise himself in the media and hide behind silly reasons for the failure instead of accepting his own mistakes.

    PS : I certainly agree that Kallis does not deserve the orange cap because he was influential in RCB losing minimum 2-3 matches because of his slow batting. its not that you have to score 150+ in all matches, everything depends on the situation. But 110 - 120 is not great in T20.

  • Debanjon on April 19, 2010, 17:46 GMT

    Too sad to see KKR out of the semis for the 3rd year running. At least it was a much better performance than last 2 IPLs. But question still remains as to the effectiveness of the Indian players. Barring Dada, Karthik and to some extent Tiwari, others were huge disappointments. As for the foreign players, still not sure why McCullum is picked over Hodge/Hussey. Next year hope KKR brings in some good Indian talent and takes a step forward. All the best!!

  • Dre on April 19, 2010, 17:39 GMT

    @naina11. I assure you I can very much hold a bat properly, I may not be good enough or took training serious enough to be paid heaps of money to perform for fans in my country but I along with many others who rightly point out some short-comings in Ganguly's performances and the performances of his team, know more than enough about the game to tell that something is wrong with the KKR team, INCLUDING the captaincy. Ganguly WAS a fantastic captain and a good bat. That does not mean for even a second that evry1 should just assume that he still is! Different format, Different team, Different rules, Different performances. He is not playing cricket as regularly and his is aging, that obviously is taking a toll on his fluency. Never should any1 stand up and claim that doing better than your team-mates means doing well. It could mean your performance= avg and theirs below avg! He may still have what it takes but he needs to sort himself out 1st and then his team before KKR improve.

  • Pathikrit on April 19, 2010, 16:54 GMT

    Ha ha, i can't get "enough" of this constant bickering/criticism that Ganguly has to face for even crappy reasons....i guess this so-called critiques will follow him to his grave :P ! @vimalan, dude, u criticize Ganguly's slow strike-rate...his job is playing a sheet-anchor around the likes of Gayle/McCullum....i still agree that 119-120 is a bit too slow, 125 would've been desirable...and would you as critical of Kallis knowing that his strike rate is also around 119 ? Next you start being unreasonable by criticizing Ganguly's catch... I mean if he doesn't go for it, people will criticize for his lethargy and slowness on the field, if he drops it, people will say he has butter-fingers, if he takes it, people will say there was no need for him to take that guys are truly something when it comes to critiquing, hats off to u people !

  • Alex on April 19, 2010, 16:23 GMT

    Yes Ganguly do not have enough energy to run between wickets. He is more of brain guy. He can do occassionaly run well if he wants it to protect him from critics.

    His fielding has improved comparatively. My main accusation is he did not use well first 6 overs to get 3 prople with >200% strike rate players play in top 3. That is the key for big score. Good start without losing wicket almost gets you to 190+ every time.

    Ganguly should bat no 4. He was afraid to play there because you have to take more risks to get 4s and 6s and also you need to run more between wickets to accumulate. He just want to save his energy and so in order to protect himself he opened.

    I believe Ganguly lack confidence as a batsman. He is a more of oppurtunistic batsman than talented batsman. He as a batsman as a burden on any team.

  • Ravishankar on April 19, 2010, 16:08 GMT

    KKR's management need to buy good bowlers for their side. Discard ruthlessly the dead woods, the overpaid under-performers etc., The Gayles, the Mccullums, the Sharmas. It is sad no one talks about consistent performers like Murali Kartiks. Is IPL is about cricket or glamour

  • Dummy4 on April 19, 2010, 15:34 GMT

    Following the MI vs KKR game now. Best of luck today and next year Sourav da.

  • Mohammad on April 19, 2010, 15:27 GMT

    Drop Sourav Ganguly immediately from the team. Presence of Ganguly in the team is spoiling the KKRs party. Apart from a couple of mediocre knocks he did nothing significant. His lackluster performance during the initial stages of the tournment has costed KKR a semifinal spot. KKR will never move up the ladder as long as Gangualy is there in the team, a fact, realized earlier, the better. Remove Ganguly and see how the same team sans Ganguly do wonders for KKR. It is the immature and biased attitude of Indian fans that turns a mediocre cricketer into a great. SRK should get rid of Ganguly without worrying about the sentiments of handful of Ganguly fans if he wants his team to do well. Ganguly is neither a great batsman nor a great captain. He is just another good batsman and a good captain. Just for the record, Dravid despite being a great test batsman, does not serve any good to the cause of RCB team in the shortest format of the game. A useful T20 player instead would do better.

  • james on April 19, 2010, 14:44 GMT

    hi every1..i'm not an indian but i do respect each n for da living legand DADA...i love him alot...althoug he batted a bit slow but so what he always manage to save KKR from losing....his previous match again RR...they were going to blast themselves into de semis but unfortunatly dey lost da big hitters Galye n Mcullum...after dat DADA played a remarkable innings n saave KKR frm losing....last but not the least,i'm really vry sad for KKRs hardwork dis year which cannot bring dem to semis...but still they show alot of improvment from last 2 ipls...i'm a huge fan of KKR n DADA...i'll surly miss DADA..i hope dat nxt ipl DADA n his team come bck with a huge fight n wish dem to win da cup.....Way to go KKR n DADA...a good captain..good luck frm a loving body can jude a captian better den his own team....people always talk bullshit becoz dey cant do what our legand does...

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