Monday, April 20, 2009

IPL Season II - Ye "Naya" Hai

Finally the DLF IPL Seacond season is here. And slowly it is gaining momentum that was nowhere in the start, unlike the first season. There are lots of expectations from the old winners. And somehow, many people are expecting the old tallies to continue. For such people, I have only three words. This is New. Ye Naya Hai.

IPL Season one gave us winners like Rajasthan Royals and Chennai Super Kings. While teams which stood high grounds on paper, like Deccan chargers, played some schoolboy cricket, especially in terms of team spirit. Royal Challengers of Bangalore looked challenged on many grounds and Mumbai Indians could not make it even with the biggest biggies around.

But if you concluded that Mahendra Singh Dhoni is the ultimate King (or Super King) whose team cannot be beaten by that of an aging Sachin or that Gilchrist, Gibbs and RP Singh cannot make a good team, it's time you think again as everything seems to be new in this season.

IPL season II proved from the very first match that one should not go by the tallies of last season when Mumbai beat the Finalist of last season, Chennai Super Kings. If this was not enough of a surprise (for me it really was not) in the second match Royal Challengers Bangalore not only won the match but Rajasthan Royals, last year's champions, were reduced to a mere fifty eight, the lowest yet in the IPL. And it was purely because of the all charged up performance of the Challengers, and their changed attitude which was clear when they were fielding.

The third match was unfortunate as the rain made things not so impartial, but the fourth match once again brought in Deccan Chargers as victors against Kolkata Knight Riders, after an extremely poor show by the former during the last season. Also, the fielding and bowling of the team looked wonderful and the attitude of Chargers on field was hardly anything less than that of the Challengers.

In short, the first two days have made it clear that the new season of the IPL has to be written in new, blank sheets and one need not think that the impressions of the last season will be found on this season too. And now even if a few matches again give the results like the past, it will not be because of who won in the last season, but purely because who is in command this time.

On that note, there is something I would say about Dhoni's comment that I read in today's newspaper. Dhoni had written that they'd make a comeback (after their loss to Mumbai in first match), but my say is that there is nothing to make a comeback to in this season. To win this one, he'll have to start anew with his team, something that Pieterson and Gilchrist are doing.

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