May 23, 2008

Kings XI Punjab secures second semi-final spot

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The game between Delhi Daredevils and Kolkata Knight Riders, in the Indian Premier League (IPL), was washed out yesterday due to persistent rain in Delhi. The game has to be abandoned without a ball being bowled.

Yuvi qualifies and Dada eliminated
As a result, Kings XI Punjab became the second team to progress to the semi-finals stage of IPL after the leaders Rajasthan Royals. The bad news is that Kolkata Knight Riders were knocked out of the tournament. Kolkata becomes the third team to be knocked out after Hyderabad Deccan Chargers and Bangalore Royal Challengers. Sourav Ganguly and Shah Rukh Khan should be disappointed after two of their last three games were decided by rain.

That leaves Chennai Super Kings, Delhi Daredevils and Mumbai Indians as the contenders for the remaining two semi-final slots. Interestingly, various scenarios emerge and any two of these three teams can still qualify.

Dhoni’s Chennai Super Kings
If Chennai wins any one of their matches against Rajasthan Royals and Hyderabad Deccan Chargers, they will qualify irrespective of other results. They need not worry about other games and have to just concentrate on the games in hand.

Sehwag’s Delhi Daredevils
Delhi must win their only remaining game against Mumbai. In addition to this, either Chennai should lose two games or Mumbai should lose one more game.

Tendulkar’s Mumbai Indians
The game between Mumbai and Delhi is very important for all the three teams. All they have to do is just beat Delhi Daredevils. If Mumbai beats Delhi, then Chennai and Mumbai will go through to the semi-finals. If they lose the game against Delhi, they can still qualify by winning the two remaining games against Rajasthan Royals and Bangalore Royal Challengers. They could still qualify with just one win. But, for that to happen, Chennai must lose two games and then Net Run Rate (NRR) will come into play.

As you can see, Chennai and Mumbai have the option to write their own script. All these permutations and combinations come into play only if rain does not play any further hand in this tournament.

Coming Soon
Meanwhile, the first inconsequential match comes up in the IPL tournament. Kings XI Punjab, already in the semi-final, meets Hyderabad Deccan Chargers, already eliminated from the tournament. It is a practice game for Punjab and it is some pride resurrection for Deccan Chargers.

In fact, the two most important games are up for tomorrow. Chennai meets Rajasthan Royals and Delhi clashes with Mumbai. Fine, the final two slots may well be decided tomorrow.


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