There are 45 more matches to be played before the four top teams that will make it to the play-offs of the fifth edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) are known and even though it can be argued that the table-toppers have started to emerge, the tournament is still open since top positions change drastically with every match.
At the bottom of the table though, there has been no change at all, as Deccan Chargers, which signed up Kenya’s Tanmay Mishra - who will not play for Kenya for three years due to some convoluted rule - is yet to click as a team, and has maintained the dubious distinction of having lost all its four matches.
Each IPL team can only have four overseas players, and Mishra could have been the fifth foreigner in the Deccan Chargers line up, after Sri Lanka’s Kumar Sangakkara, South Africa’s Dale Steyn and Jean Paul Duminy and Australia’s Daniel Christian, but he is registered as an Indian player in view of his dual citizenship – he was born in India and has been living in Kenya.
Yesterday evening, Mumbai Indians were playing Kings XI Punjab and Deccan Chargers were pitted against Kolkata Knight Riders in a match the former needed to win to prove that all is not lost and they can get back to its winning ways of 2009 when it emerged as the overall winner.
Fifth in the points table
Before Sunday’s encounter with Kolkata Knight Riders who had so far won three matches out of six and were lying fifth in the points table, Deccan Chargers, captained by Sri Lanka’s former captain, Sangakkara, were lying at the bottom of the nine-team IPL 5 table with no points to its name.
And the next matches are not any easier since tomorrow, the team will again play Kolkata Knight Riders.
On Thursday, Deccan Chargers face off with the Sourav Ganguly-skippered Pune Warriors India, who had so far won four matches out of seven and were placed third, below Delhi Daredevils and Rajasthan Royals who are first and second in the table respectively.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni-captained Chennai Super Kings are placed fourth with four wins out of seven matches, Mumbai Indians are sixth with three wins out of five and Royal challengers Bangalore (three wins out of six matches) and Kings XI Punjab (four losses in six matches) is seventh and eighth, respectively.
The round robin stage of the tournament will end on May 20, and the play-offs will start on May 22, with the finals being played on May 27.