Kona Kona Cricket Articles

22nd October 2020

Week 3 - Near-miss Mankad and the emergence of ‘Rahuls’

The third week of the Indian T20 league ended with Mumbai Indians overtaking Delhi Capitals on the points table. With five wins from seven games, defending champions Mumbai have emerged as the most consistent team this season as well and will go into Week 4 high on confidence. 

Week 3 of the edition gave a glimpse of how the top-four might look like after the league stages end. While Kings XI Punjab are struggling, MS Dhoni’s side have an Herculean task ahead of them, and it would require massive overhauls if the two teams want to change their fortunes. 

We look at the top moments from the week gone by.

A game of very small margins 

The first game on Saturday saw Kolkata Knight Riders take on Kings XI Punjab with the match going right down to the wire. Seven runs were needed off the last ball of the game and Punjab batsman Glenn Maxwell played a lofted drive off the bowling of Sunil Narine. The ball bounced less than an inch from the boundary line as the umpires signaled a four. A six would have seen the season’s third Super Over, and would have given KXIP a chance of redeeming their dismal tournament that sees them with just one win from seven matches. 

KL Rahul’s men, were, however, in with a chance of chasing down Kolkata’s 164 after the openers had piled on more than 100 runs for the first wicket. Their middle overs woes came to haunt them again this season though as Punjab lost four wickets for 43 runs to eventually lose the match. 

Ashwin Mankads a batsman, almost

Ravi Ashwin had created controversy last season when he “Mankaded” non-striker Jos Buttler for being out of his crease before the bowler had delivered the ball. The rule though has been criticized with a number of experts proclaiming that Mankading is against the spirit of cricket. Delhi coach Ricky Ponting had voiced his criticism of the action as well, and there were speculations as to where Ashwin, playing for Delhi this year, would repeat the Mankad if there was an opportunity. 

Fans were left disappointed though as Ashwin did not Mankad Aaron Finch in the game against Bangalore, even though the Aussie was way out of his crease before the ball was bowled. Instead, the Indian off-spinner let Finch go off with a warning. 

"Rahul... naam toh suna hoga"

It was KL Rahul who stole the show in Week 1 with a brilliant 132 off just 69 balls while Rahul Tewatia was the star in the following week as he slammed 30 runs off the 18th over to lead his team Rajasthan Royals over the line in a run chase of 224 against Kings XI Punjab. The last week belonged to Rahul Tripathi, who has left his mark this season with two vital knocks. 

After a 16-ball 36 at Sharjah for KKR against Delhi, Tripathi was asked to open the innings against Chennai. The batsman smashed 81 in just 51 deliveries and played the role of an anchor to perfection, eventually helping his team to a total of 167. The side won the match by 10 runs with Rahul winning the Man of the Match award.

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Disclaimer: This editorial content has been sourced from HoldingWilley