This match sees the league’s bottom dwellers square up to each other, although it’d be a little unfair to lump Punjab with Hyderabad, the former of whom have six points and are still in playoff contention unlike the latter whose sole victory all season sees them rooted to the foot of the table.
That unlucky team that lost to Hyderabad was none other than Punjab Kings, who had suffered a miserable batting collapse that night, leaving no room for even Hyderabad to somehow managing to lose.
Since IPL restarted, Hyderabad have played once and were as casually awful as they were in India before. In what was a reverse fixture, Delhi, eager to wash the shame of losing to the worst team in the division, wiped the floor with Hyderabad, dominating in all facets of the game in what was an eight-wicket win.
This is not as woefully constructed crew as their results show but their confidence is certainly shot. Their former captain and IPL legend David Warner looks a shell of the player he once was. In the last game, when it was expected that he’d shake off his rough patch, he got out for zero. Even the world class Williamson cannot do much right now.
Punjab Kings will surely still be reeling for their defeat on Tuesday night. Needing four off the final over against Rajasthan Royals with two set batsmen of international pedigree at the crease, they somehow managed to lose it.
Of the six ball of the final over, five were dots as the Kings’ astonishingly poor batsman made a hero out of Kartik Tyagi – a 20-year-old medium-fast bowler who has just a dozen T20 games to his name.
For a team to lose a match after having a 120-run stand for the opening wicket merits it being called a historic meltdown.
The defeat, however, was due to no fault of their openers KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal, who had contributed 49 and 67 respectively at whirlwind pace.
The lesson learned should be to never leave things for late. When things are comfortable and under control, dillydallying should be avoided in favour of going for the kill.