Harshal Patel leaves RCB

Harshal Patel leaves RCB: It is unclear as of now for how long the fast bowler will be unavailable

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Harshal Patel leaves RCB:  Royal Challengers Bangalore fast bowler Harshal Patel has left the IPL bio-bubble following the death of his sister.

Harshal exited the bubble on Sunday after the game against Mumbai Indians on Saturday in Pune.

It is not clear yet for how long Harshal will remain unavailable for his team and he will miss at least one game, against Chennai Super Kings at the DY Patil Stadium on Tuesday. To re-enter the IPL bubble, he will need to undergo quarantine for a minimum of three days.

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Harshal has been a standout player for Royal Challengers over the past couple of seasons and he took 2 for 23 on Saturday in the team’s seven-wicket win over Mumbai Indians. He is their second-highest wicket-taker so far with his tally of six wickets, behind Wanindu Hasaranga’s eight. Overall, he has picked up 84 wickets in the 67 IPL matches since debuting in 2012.

His breakthrough year came in 2021 when took the purple cap home with 32 wickets at an average of 14.34. He was also the top wicket-taker in the death overs last IPL with 19 wickets.

He was, however, not retained by Royal Challengers ahead of the mega auction earlier this year, before he was bought again by them for a whopping INR 10.75 crore (USD 1.4 million) – 53.75 times his previous salary of INR 20 lakh.

Harshal, 31, has played eight T20Is since making his international debut last year.

CSK get on the board after the Dube-Uthappa show

Chennai Super Kings 216 for 4 (Dube 95*, Uthappa 88) beat Royal Challengers Bangalore 193 for 9 (Shahbaz 41, Karthik 34, Theekshana 4-33) by 23 runs

It was supposed to be all about Faf du Plessis (and Josh Hazlewood) coming up against his former team Chennai Super Kings – it’s like playing brothers, he said at the toss – but it was Shivam Dube and Robin Uthappa who absolutely pulverized their former team, Royal Challengers Bangalore, taking 156 off the last 10 overs and turning an ordinary start into a formidable total of 216 to set up their first win in five matches this IPL.

It was almost like 2007 all over again: vintage Uthappa walking at fast bowlers and flat-batting them over their head or into the leg side, and Dube invoking Yuvraj Singh with his languid free-flowing hits. Between them, they hit 17 sixes to go with 12 fours in the innings; while both posted their highest IPL scores, Dube came within a six of a hundred and Uthappa fell short by 12.

In response, some dropped catches and questionable choices of bowlers towards the end produced tense moments even after Royal Challengers had been 50 for 4 and 146 for 8. It was only when Dinesh Karthik got out for the first time in this IPL, with 46 required off 17, that Super Kings could finally breathe easy.

RCB stifle CSK at the start

Ruturaj Gaikwad’s poor IPL continued as he fell to the machine-like lengths of Hazlewood with the new ball. Moeen Ali was run out by sharp fielding from debutant Suyash Prabhudessai, making it 36 for 2 in the seventh over. With the early spin of Glenn Maxwell, Royal Challengers somehow managed to keep the quickest powerplay batter of this IPL, Uthappa, down to 23 of 22 in the first 10 overs.

All hell breaks loose: Harshal Patel leaves RCB

Royal Challengers delayed the introduction of Wanindu Hasaranga probably because of the presence of a left-hand batter, but in the 11th over, he was brought on. Dube immediately launched into him, hitting him for a six and a four. In the 12th over, he hit the left-arm spin of Shahbaz for another six. Not to be left behind, Uthappa sent Maxwell into the bigger leg-side boundary for three sixes in the 13th over.

The assault was well and truly on, and Royal Challengers, the worst bowling side at the death of this tournament, didn’t have any answers in the absence of Harshal Patel, missing this match because of the death of his sister.

Back injury puts a further question mark over Deepak Chahar’s IPL return

The hitting was so clean that Super Kings didn’t worry about hitting into the bigger boundary. Uthappa played a couple of cute ramps, but Dube just sat deep in the crease and smoothly punished errors in length. And there were errors aplenty. When Mohammed Siraj had Uthappa caught at the end of the 17th over, it turned out he had overstepped.

Akash Deep caught the worst of the punishment but no one was spared. Hazlewood’s back two went for 12 and 15, Siraj conceded 18 off his final over, and Hasaranga cost 13, 13, and 14. From starting at a run-a-ball, both players were set for hundreds, but Uthappa found deep midwicket trying to go from 88 to 94 in the 19th over. Dube began the final over on 80, got to 94 with the last ball to go, but managed to send a low full toss straight to long-off.

RCB’s poor start

Royal Challengers have been the second-slowest side in the powerplay this IPL, preferring to set themselves up for acceleration in the middle and death overs, but they didn’t have that luxury in the chase of 217. Super Kings played their match-ups perfectly, giving them a healthy dose of spin early on.

When Mahesh Theekshana began the third over at 11 for 0, somebody had to take a chance. du Plessis did, but Theekshana was good enough to cramp him up and produce a catch for long on. Kohli tried to hit out against Mukesh Choudhary in the fourth over but found a long leg. Theekshana ended the powerplay by trapping Anuj Rawat lbw with a carrom ball.

Maxwell’s entry made way for Ravindra Jadeja to bowl, who duly proceeded to get Maxwell for the seventh time in 13 innings. Five of those dismissals have been bowled, the highest for any bowler against any batter in all T20 cricket.

Prabhudessai, Shahbaz delay the inevitable

Prabhudessai continued his impressive debut as he and Shahbaz rebuilt the innings with a 60-run partnership in 5.3 overs. Prabhudessai started off with boundaries through midwicket and extra cover but also showed off his reverse-sweep and the ramp. Shabaz was more industrious and had to work harder for his runs.

Theekshana almost seals the deal

Theekshana came back to take the wickets of both Prabhudessai and Shahbaz and did enough to get a five-for, but Choudhary dropped a sitter from Karthik, his third miss of the night. In prime touch, Karthik proceeded to give Super Kings some nervous moments, especially when they chose to give the 17th over to Choudhary when they had enough left from Bravo and Chris Jordan. Karthik took 23 off that over, bringing the requirement down from 71 to 48.

Finally, in the 19th over, a catch stuck as Bravo made Karthik hit into the bigger leg-side boundary at the edge of which was captain Jadeja. He will be relieved his side is finally on the board, but Super Kings could have easily won by 50-60 more, which can have a big impact on the net run rate.

Back injury puts a further question marks over Deepak Chahar’s IPL return

Pace-bowling allrounder was already recovering from a quadricep tear picked against West Indies in February

Deepak Chahar’s potential return to IPL remains doubtful after the India and Chennai Super Kings strike bowler suffered a back injury during his rehab at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru. The gravity of the injury remains to be ascertained, as it is learned that Super Kings are yet to get a formal report from BCCI.

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Chahar has been at the NCA for more than a month now, recovering from the quadricep tear he picked during India’s T20I series against West Indies in February. While the initial assessment by the NCA physios projected Chahar was set to miss a major chunk of the IPL, the pace-bowling allrounder’s quick recovery kept Super Kings optimistic of a return in late April.

However, the back injury is likely to further endanger Chahar’s return to the IPL, considering the BCCI and the Indian team management would want him to be in peak shape as India prepares for the T20 World Cup due to begin in October.

A swing bowler with the new ball as well as an able lower-order hitter, Chahar’s absence has already hurt the balance of the Super Kings’ side so far this season. They have lost all four matches, to begin with, most crucially missing him with the ball in the powerplay, where they have managed just two wickets at an economy rate of 8.62 in 24 overs across the four games, and have not yet been able to find an ideal replacement for him.

However, Chahar’s record for Super Kings in the same phase reads a lot better: he has an economy rate of 7.61 with 42 wickets in 58 innings for them during the first six overs with the ball.

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Super Kings shelled out INR 14 crore (approx. US $1.84 million) for Chahar at the IPL 2022 auction, but now seem to struggle in his absence. Although the likes of Mukesh Choudhary, Tushar Deshpande, Adam Milne, and Chris Jordan have been used with the new ball, none of them has been able to provide them with the required control in the early stages of the match.

Among still other options, Super Kings have KM Asif and Rajvardhan Hangarkekar who can take the new ball for them in the matches to come.

Can Rohit Sharma the India T20I batter turn up for Mumbai Indians, please?

Numbers since 2019 show that he has found the job of opening a lot trickier in the IPL than that for his country

Among 15 batters to have batted at least 30 times in the top three since the 2019 IPL, only two average less than 30. And among those 15 batters, five strikes at less than 130 runs per 100 balls. But only one falls in both categories: Rohit Sharma.

Rohit has been way below par in the last few seasons in the IPL. The last time he averaged 30-plus in an IPL season was in 2016. Since then, Rohit has averaged below 30 – in the high twenties – every year. His strike rates in these five seasons have been ordinary too: he has struck at 130-plus only in one of them – in 2018. From the 2019 season, when he began opening for Mumbai Indians regularly, Rohit has averaged 27.9 and struck at 127.7. However, these numbers are not indicative of what he is capable of.

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In T20Is since April 2019, Rohit has made 982 runs at an average of 32.73 and a strike rate of 144. And he has scored these runs mostly as an opener for India, the same position where he bats for Mumbai in the IPL. In fact, Rohit is currently the second-most prolific opener in T20Is after Martin Guptill. His 25 fifty-plus scores are the highest in the format for any opener; four of those have been hundreds, and no batter has scored more hundreds in T20Is. So clearly, an opening is something Rohit is used to.

Even so, Rohit has found the same job a lot trickier in the IPL. It could be because he feels the need to take on the role of an anchor with Mumbai. After all, he is the captain and a seasoned player of the franchise. Rohit could well have been talking about himself when he said “we want batters to bat deep” after the loss to Royal Challengers Bangalore.

India’s batting line-up doesn’t demand that role from him. There has been Virat Kohli plays the anchor. There have been KL Rahul too at times. Rohit is free to play his natural game with India. But perhaps he is not so with Mumbai. Or is he?

Unlike Punjab Kings or Sunrisers Hyderabad, Mumbai has had the luxury of having a strong middle order in the previous seasons. While the likes of Rahul, David Warner, and Kane Williamson had to take on the responsibility of playing deep into the innings, Rohit has actually had the opportunity to play freely.

Consider these numbers. Since the 2019 IPL, with Rohit in the middle, his partners have averaged 50.3 runs per dismissal across innings. Now, that is a privilege no other top-order batter has enjoyed in this period: among the 25 batters with at least 20 innings in the top three, none has had their partners average higher than Rohit’s.

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Rahul, who is often criticized for playing too slowly and costing his team in the end, has seen his partners getting dismissed every 31.4 runs on an average. Williamson has seen a dismissal every 28.8 runs from his partners. Thus, there is clearly a reason for these batters to drop anchor.

 ROHIT VERSUS HIS PARTNERS: Harshal Patel leaves RCB

But there remains no such reason for Rohit. At least not when the likes of Jos Buttler have shown the way. The England batter outscores his partners easily while striking at nearly 150, even while his partners get dismissed every 22.4 runs on an average. Among the 25 batters, Buttler enjoys the least support from his partners. That is less than half as much as Rohit has enjoyed.

Perhaps Rohit is burdened by the responsibility of being the captain to play the way he has. But it is clear from the above numbers that there is no reason for that.

But has he at least been successful as an anchor in the IPL? Well, it is no secret that he has not been. His average and strike rate portray that. However, averages and strike rates don’t tell the complete story in this format. Let us look at how often he bats deep – like he wants to – in the IPL.

Since the start of 2019 when he has been a regular opener for Mumbai, Rohit has played 43 innings but has faced more than 20 balls only on 18 occasions. Among batters with a minimum of 20 innings, Rohit’s ability to play 20 balls is one of the lowest. Among 25 batters who have played at least 20 innings in the top three, Rohit is ranked 21st. Clearly, he has not been as successful at batting deep as he wants to be.

But does he at least make it count when he lasts that long? His average runs per innings when has faced a minimum of 20 balls is 48.28. What this means is that Rohit adds just about 23 more runs on an average having already batted 20 balls in an innings since his first 20-ball strike rate is 126, which roughly translates to around 25 runs.

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Compare this with Rahul, who has played the T20 anchor role to the T in the last few seasons. On average, Rahul adds a further 36 runs having already batted 20 balls in an innings. And he lasts 20 or more balls much more frequently than Rohit does: 70.5% of his innings to Rohit’s 41.5%

In fact, Rohit has been scoring even fewer than the likes of Manish Pandey and Ajinkya Rahane in such innings. While the positions of the latter get questioned a lot, Rohit’s perceived value is much higher due to his T20I performances as well as captaincy credentials.

As an opener, if you are not successful as an anchor in this format, you have to be a dasher. Harshal Patel leaves RCB, Very few batters in the top teams don’t fit either of these roles. Of course, what role a batter plays depends on the composition of his team. Batters like Rahul – with Kings – or Shikhar Dhawan would be examples of the former. Sunil Narine or a Prithvi Shaw for their respective franchises would be examples of the latter.

And then there are exceptions like Buttler, who manage to do both – score fast initially in the powerplay overs and also bat deep enough to lend solidity to the batting order. Harshal Patel leaves RCB

The issue with Rohit in the IPL is that he doesn’t fit into either of these two molds. He has been failing at being a useful anchor for Mumbai, while also not getting them off too quick starts. Among the 18 openers who have batted at least 15 times in the IPL since 2019, Rohit’s strike rate of 127.7 is ranked 15th. Harshal Patel leaves RCB

This has only meant that Rohit has not been able to stamp his authority in the IPL according to his capabilities. ESPNcricinfo’s Smart Stats looks at how impactful individual performances have been in the IPL with the context of the game in the background. In 44 IPL matches since 2019, Rohit’s performance with the bat – as given by his Batting Impact score – has been the best for a Mumbai batter in the match on only seven occasions.

But that is a far cry from how often he tops the Batting Impact score for India in T20Is. Since April 2019, he has been the batter with the top Batting Impact score for India 11 times in 31 innings. No other India batter has topped as often as Rohit.Harshal Patel leaves RCB

Among the best top-three batters in IPL since 2019, Rohit has finished among the top-three impactful players in a match only 51% of the time. With openers having a maximum chance to make an impact, Rohit is ranked ninth among the ten top-order players who have played a minimum of 35 innings at the top. The likes of Rahul, Faf du Plessis, and Mayank Agarwal have delivered more impactful performances on a consistent basis than Rohit or Shaw.

Harshal Patel leaves RCB

Rohit hasn’t had to pull his weight as a batter in the previous seasons’ thanks to his astute leadership and the strong batting line-up that Mumbai has enjoyed. He has been, after all, the most successful IPL captain. However, with the new team after the mega auction this year, Mumbai don’t have the luxury of a strong middle order as they have had in the past.

This means Rohit will need to turn up with the bat more often this season onwards. He could do well with some advice from the Rohit Sharma that turns up for India.

With four defeats in as many matches, the start of IPL 2022 has been far from ideal for five-time champions Mumbai Indians. However, their experienced quick, Jasprit Bumrah, believes that in T20 cricket, anyone could have a bad game, and “to quickly move on” is all that matters.

“This is T20 cricket, anyone can get targeted, anyone can have a good game or a bad game,” Bumrah said ahead of Mumbai’s match against Punjab Kings. “But, in this game, it is very important that you do not carry baggage going forward because there are a lot of matches on the go and you have to quickly move on.”

As is the case with all teams, Mumbai is dealing with a major reshuffle following the IPL 2022 mega auction, with plenty of new names slotting in. While the likes of Ishan Kishan and Suryakumar Yadav have done their bit at the top, the inexperience in the middle order has brought about Mumbai’s downfall on more than one occasion.

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In their second game of the season, against Rajasthan Royals, Mumbai collapsed from 121 for 2 to 136 for 6 in the space of 15 balls to fall short by 23 runs. Then, in their most recent outing, against Royal Challengers Bangalore, they crumbled from 50 for 1 to 79 for 6.

While middle-order collapses are not ideal, Bumrah insisted that they needed to show faith in the people they have. “This is a transition phase,” he said. “We have got some new faces in the middle who are learning about their game and will only get better. So, I don’t think we need to panic and make a lot of changes. We just need to be a little patient and back their talent, which we are going to do.

“That is what I feel the plan going further would be. We have the belief in their talent, that is why they are in the squad, so we give them enough games, and we back their talent.”

“I don’t think we need to panic and make a lot of changes. We just need to be a little patient and back their talent, which we are going to do.”

Jasprit Bumrah: Harshal Patel leaves RCB

But how do the players pick themselves up after such an underwhelming start? Bumrah says that there is no inspiration required when playing cricket at such a high level and that the team is doing everything in its capacity to turn things around.

“You don’t need to reinvent the wheel, right? You don’t need to bring new inspiration. Everybody enjoys the game, that is why you play cricket. No other inspiration is required,” Bumrah said.

“We are trying to find new ways. There have been a lot of discussions on how do we make an impact on this current situation that is going on. We are focusing on that and have come up with a few plans, so let’s see if that works, and we will try to use it in the next match.”

Mumbai plays their next game at the same venue as their last two matches: the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune. When asked what the team needed to succeed on the Pune surface, pat came Bumrah’s reply: “I would say win the toss. That really helps as well.”

Mumbai has been on the wrong side of coin tosses in three out of four instances so far this season. And with dew having a substantial bearing on the proceedings, defending a target hasn’t always been easy.

“So far in the four games we have bowled second three times, so it is a little different when the dew settles in, and how the wicket reacts from the first innings,” Bumrah said on the nature of the surfaces in the tournament.

“It is interesting to see how the wickets will go after midway of the tournament. We’ll be keeping an eye but right now we are just focusing on what is the current scenario and if at all we bowl second, what are the options that we can bring to the table and what are the options that we should use when there is dew on the wicket.”

IPL Media Advisory

March 6, 2022

BCCI announces schedule for TATA IPL 2022

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced the schedule for TATA Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022 which will be held in Mumbai and Pune.

A total number of 70 league matches and 4 Playoff games will be played over the duration of 65 days.

The 15th season will start on 26th March at the Wankhede stadium with a blockbuster clash between Chennai Super Kings and Kolkata Knight Riders.

On 27th March, the league will stage its first double-header starting off with a Day game at Brabourne where the Delhi Capitals will square off against Mumbai Indians. The DY Patil Stadium will host the clash between Punjab Kings & Royal Challengers Bangalore at night.

The MCA Stadium in Pune will host its first game on 29th March when Sunrisers Hyderabad take on Rajasthan Royals.

In all, 20 matches each will be held at Wankhede Stadium & DY Patil Stadium, 15 matches each at Brabourne and MCA International Stadium, Pune.

There will be 12 doubleheaders in total with the first match starting at 3:30 PM IST. All evening matches will start at 7:30 PM IST.

The final game of the league stage will be played between Sunrisers Hyderabad and Punjab Kings on 22nd May at the Wankhede Stadium.

The schedule for the Playoffs and the TATA IPL 2022 final to be played on 29th May will be announced later.

The complete fixtures for the league stage of the TATA IPL 2022 can be accessed by clicking HERE.

 

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