Delhi Daredevils v Kolkata Knight Riders
Match abandoned without a ball bowled
The Kolkata Knight Riders became the third team to be eliminated from the race for a semi-final spot after persistent rain caused their match against the Delhi Daredevils to be abandoned without a ball being bowled. The result was good news for the Kings XI Punjab, though, as it guarantees them a berth in the final four.
The washout leaves Delhi with a must-win situation in their remaining fixture against the Mumbai Indians at the Feroz Shah Kotla - a fixture that is threatened, though, by the forecast of thunderstorms for the next three days. A victory in that game will take them to 15 points, three above Mumbai - who will then have to win their remaining two games to reach the semi-finals. If that game is washed out as well, then one win for Mumbai will suffice.
Though the rain let up around 75 minutes after the scheduled start, the ground staff reckoned they needed about two hours to ensure the ground was fit for play which was beyond the cut-off time for the match to begin. Earlier, curator Radhey Shyam had said two Super Soppers were pressed into service and called the Kotla "one of the best grounds in the country in terms of drainage".
Delhi had been lashed with unseasonal rains over the past three days and though the pitch and surrounding areas had been covered, the wet outfield posed a problem. This is Delhi's second straight home game to be affected by rain. Last Saturday, they lost after Punjab blasted 94 in eight overs to win on the Duckworth/Lewis method.
After starting off with a bang, things have gone downhill for Kolkata. Their batting struggled to cope with the loss of several big-name signings, who left for national duties, and managed only four totals above 150 in their 12 innings, leaving their bowlers too much to do. Another crippling drawback was their inability to triumph against the top teams: Four of their five victories came against the bottom two teams - Bangalore Royal Challengers and Deccan Chargers.
Siddarth Ravindran is an editorial assistant at Cricinfo