IPL-2022: As Rajasthan Beat The Giants Only One Play-Off Spot Is Effectively Up For The Grabs!


Rajasthan Royals thanks to an intensive bowling effort by all their pacers and spinners, Boult, Prasidh, Ashwin in particular, easily defended their score of 178/6 against the Lucknow Super Giants beating them by 24 runs at the Brabourne stadium on 15th May 2022. By this super victory Rajasthan moves to the second spot in the points table with 16 points with a healthy net run-rate while the newbie Lucknow slides to the third position, remaining with 16 points. Bangalore in the fourth spot has to win their final match against Gujarat convincingly to move to 16 points and better their sluggish net run-rate. Once they achieve that it’ll be very difficult for the other 4 teams to have any chance of making it to the play-offs. Essentially, with three teams on 20 and16 points each, it means that only one spot is up for the grabs for four franchises with a possibly 14-point deadlock between them.

 

The real contest is now between Delhi and Punjab, both of them with 12 points and each having two matches left. Tomorrow it’s the crucial contest between them win for either of them is set to enhance their chances of making it to the final four. If Delhi wins both of their remaining two matches, they’ll end up with 16 points and may even edge out Bangalore on net run-rate and vice versa for Punjab. If they win one each, they’ll be locked with 14 points each. Mumbai, hurt and pain written all over them, can spoil the chances of Delhi and Hyderabad of making it to the final four if they produce the kind of vengeance displayed against Chennai. Incidentally Rajasthan will play their last match against Chennai.

 

Hyderabad is in a poor shape after losing all the last six games despite having probably the best bowling attack this season, mainly because of the batting failure of captain Kane Williamson, and they can only reach up to 14 points if they manage to win both against Mumbai and Punjab. Besides, they have a very poor net run-rate. Kolkata is in a far worse condition despite their spirited win against Hyderabad in the previous match and a positive net run-rate, for the simple reason that they have only one match left which is against the Giants and even if they beat Lucknow, they can only achieve 14 points, thus joining a possible five-way 14-point deadlock. Lucknow can win any match if captain KL Rahul and Quinton de Kock fire with the bat. In last evening’s match both of them failed to lethal blows by Rajasthan’s Trent Boult and Prasidh Krishna and their team lost the match. It’d be a real pity with Kolkata not figuring in the first two play-off matches to be played in their ‘home’ ground, Kolkata’s lively Eden Gardens.

 

The tournament cannot be said to be wide open now as Gujarat has already made it to the play-off and Rajasthan and Lucknow are almost sure to join them. As we said earlier there is effective suspense only about which team’s going to make it to the last spot available. Our bet is either Delhi or Bangalore. What about yours?

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