It is a maxim that gets repeated repeatedly that for the game of cricket it is the catches that wins the matches. Well, if one were to apply the maxim to today’s match in the IPL it would seem that this basic fact was lacking and it proved to be the nemesis for the Kings XI Punjab in the final run. Sherlock Holmes would have scratched his head in the manner in which the catches were being dropped like hot potatoes from the fingers of the fielders or it appeared as if the fingers had so much residual butter left from the parathas and the curd, staple diet of Punjab, that ball kept on popping out of the hand.
Let us analyze these lapses. The first catch that was dropped was by Srisanth. For him, the season during the third chapter indeed is not going right and the dropped catch could further put a question mark on his continuance in the team, after all it was a sitter and one of the most basic ways in which catches come to the fielders. May be the simple manner in which it had come to Srisanth would have foxed him and by the time he could react, the bowl rolled over to the boundary line.
The second catch that was dropped was that by Ravi Bopara, and he spilled out the catch of Kevin Pietersen, who went on to score his maiden fifty for the IPL. Imagine, now that he has got a fifty under his belt, what havoc can Pietersen reap at the top of the order fro Royal Challengers Bangalore?
Should the catch that Yuvraj Singh could not reach to, also be included in this category? Well, if one were to view it from the context of the catches that Yuvi has taken in the past, it could be included, but as Yuvi himself has said, he still is not fighting fit, after the injury that he suffered, may be his name ought not figure here. After all, he did make an effort to hold it.
For Kumar Sangakkara, the IPL in the third season is an experience he may like to forget in a hurry. In this crucial match where it was paramount that his team should win, he also could not hold on to a catch, and to add salt into the wound, the ball rolled over to the boundary after hitting his thighs on the way to the ground, when he could not hold on to it.
So for the Kings XI Punjab, the campaign seems to be over, now they have to play for the pride.
By: Suman Rai