Friday, April 18, 2008

Its Here - April 18th, 2008 is Here!

The glittering opening ceremony for the IPL is underway.

Shankar Ehsaan Loy are performing.

The stadium is PACKED! I don't see a single empty seat.

42 days? I reckon, all round India they could do this 365 days a year.

In an hour or so former Indian captains Saurav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid will walk out for the toss under spotlights in the dark.

In an hour and a half Kolkata Knight Riders and the Bangalore Royal Challengers will kick off the Indian Premier League.

Apart from Ganguly and Dravid, Ponting, Kallis, Boucher, Zaheer Khan, Ishant Sharma, McCullum, David Hussey, Cameron White, Virat Kohli, ad Chris Gayle will be seen in action today.

Quite a star cast that is.

At this point, I take you back to an old post where I rated the bidders in terms of the IPL teams they selected.

Here is what I had said about Kolkata and Bangalore:

Team Kolkata
Franchisee: Shahrukh Khan's Red Chillies Entertainment
Being the King of entertainment Shahrukh Khan made sure he fills his side with entertainers in Shoaib Akhtar, Ponting, and Gayle - all more than able cricketers. Led by Ganguly, the prince of Kolkata and SRK's managed the players who can fill up the 100,000 plus seats at the Eden Gardens. Shoaib sharing the new ball with Ishant Sharma followed by Umar Gul's toe busting yorkers looks like a solid pace attack on paper which can be ably supported by the spin of Gayle and Murali Karthik. They also gambled by paying a pricey $675K for arguably Australia's best T20 batsman in David Hussey. Add McCullum as the keeper to the mix and Kolkata looks like a well balanced side that could be one of the favorites as well as one of th most entertaining side of the competition. SRK bagged the best bargain in the auction with Ponting, Akhtar, and Gul but may have overpaid for Ishant.
Bidometer: 9/10

Bangalore Royal Challengers
Franchisee: UB Group
Vijay Mallya had Rahul Dravid by his side during the auction but even he could not help Bangalore pick suitable men for the T20 game. Dravid, Kallis, Chanderpaul, and Wasim Jaffer look more like a test batting line up than one for a T20 match. Moreover, they spent as much as $900,000 for Kallis, who was dropped by his national team for the T20 World Cup played in his own backyard. On the bowling front however, with Steyn, Bracken, and Zaheer they probably picked up the best pace battery out of all franchisees and all at very good prices. They got a very good deal for the best keeper in the world, Boucher, and they gambled half a million on Cameron White. With the 3 pacers, White, and Kumble; Dravid has managed a varied and dangerous attack but the batting is on the weak side and apart from home boy Dravid, Bangalore haven't really managed any crowd pullers.
Bidometer: 5/10

This rated the bidders and apart from the teams' crowd pulling power it was also based on the type players they selected keeping the 20-20 format in mind so in a way it is also an indication of team strength.

Based on the Bidometer, I say Kolkata Knight Riders will register the first victory of the IPL.

Its besides the point, that I want them to.

Make your pitch on this post...

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13 Pitched:

  1. Anonymous said...


  2. Anonymous said...

    DINDA ... what an awesome name!!

  3. Anonymous said...

    ANTI-CLIMAX ... royal challengers missed having a genuine T20 player, or for that matter a genuine ODI player.

  4. Pontings_baldspot said...

    Why is Zaheer Khan playing?!?! dude just had a surgery a few weeks ago.. and Bangalore sucks :-(

  5. Obaid said...

    Bangalore truly does suck and Kolkata totally kicked ass. Imagine if they had Shoaib too and had to let one of the start batsmen rest to get him in

  6. Trideep said...

    McCullum was the star.. this is what T20 is all about.. anyone can be a star.. Bangalore lacks players who can play T20... i dont feel they will pose any challenge in the tournament.

  7. Anonymous said...

    SRK’s Kolkata Knight Riders have defeated Malia’s Royal Challengers by 140 runs,it was expected that the KKR’s will prevail over RC’s but nobody predicted or expected such a rout, Brendon Mccullum decimated the RC attack by a highly entertaining knock of 158 off just 73 balls,it was said by many pundits that Vijay Mallya has paid too much to Kallis and Zaheer, his batting line up is not suitable for a T20 match even the batting order was not right,in my opinion Boucher or Cameroon White should have opened with Jaffer, their batting will get a boost when Misbah will join them and their bowling line up will cetainly get boosted when Steyn,Bracken and Abdur Razzazk will join them, but lack of fire power in their batting lineup will still remain a major concern for them.

    Kolkata is well balanced but if they don’t get Shoaib it might hurt them in the long run

  8. Q said...

    Mcullum was surely the star. He's set the precedent of what is to follow. Hussey today, showed that he could be matched!

    I don't think Shoaib's absence will hurt KKR too much... his presence will no doubt be great, but even without him KKR is gonna rock.

  9. Q said...

    PB - Zaheer is back from injury so he's playing.

    Or do u reckon he doesnt want to lose out on the fat paycheck?

  10. Trideep said...


    i feel most of them are going for the DLF max 6's award...

  11. Anonymous said...


    We are talking about T20, one man can make a huge difference, besides my point was when their bowling will get reinforced they will not be chasing 200+ scores its highly unlikely at most they will chase 140's 0r 150's and this batting line up is good enough to do that.

    Shoaib's exclusion will definitely hurt SRK's team in the long run, in T20 wickets are the most important factor and Shoaib is not very economical but he for sure takes wickets.

    The last pitch had movement in it as a result bowlers like Bindra and Ganguly survived on it not all the wickets will have movement, on dead and flat tracks you need a bowler like Shoaib if you want to win it all.

  12. Q said...

    Trideep - even if they are its good for us :-)

    There's been some amazing strokeplay on display.

  13. Q said...

    Sam - I agree on the bowling part. I think Steyn and Bracken will be the strongest new ball attack in the IPL. I think I commented on that in another post.

    And I take back about what I said about one man making a difference. I agree in T20, one man can as you say. Especially if that man is MISBAH :-).. we've seen McCullum and Hussey do that in the last 2 days.

    No matter how much I would like to see Shoaib Akhtar play for KKR, I don't see how his absence will hurt the team.

    Ishant Sharma supported by Agarkar and Karthik are more than able to trouble good batsmen. Support from Ganguly and Dinda when conditions are supportive make up a dangerous attack.

    Plus Umar Gul and Chris Gayle are yet to join KKR. They should be there for the next match. We know what Gul can do in T20. And Gayle is very difficult to get away. As is Hafeez who didn't get a bowl yesterday.

    So in my view, KKR have it covered despite Shoaib's absence.

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