Is it sheer bad luck that has been behind Pune Warriors poor performance or are there technicalities that the team hasn’t been able to get right? Some very strong players together also have not been able to do justice to the team. Is there anything that can be done to fix things right?

When the Pune Warriors franchisee was first bought by the Sahara group back in 2010 for a whopping Rs 1500 crores it was a given best essay writing services that the cheap cialis online franchisee will be one of the most spendthrift at the auctions and build a team that would challenge for honours. They did not disappoint at the auctions by acquiring players of the calibre of Yuvraj Singh, Wayne Parnell, Robin Uthappa and a host of other big names.

However, once the team took to the field the performances kept plummeting from one season to another starting with 4 wins out of 18 games in 2011 and again an equally flattering haul of 4 wins out of 16 in the 2012 edition. This season they have won 2 games out of 13 played so far with 3 games still to go. So how did it all go wrong? If a team fails to win even 50 % of their games three times on the trot then there must be something wrong somewhere isn’t it?

Pune Warriors after the match w the Delhi DareDevils At The Subroto Roy Sahara Stadium 300x185 How Pune Warriors India Lost the Plot

Finally A Win !!

The Captaincy Riddle

The first thing that would strike anyone who has followed the IPL is the sort of unstable leadership that the team has had to endure throughout the 3 editions- the present one included. It started off with Yuvraj Singh- their marquee buy at the auction in 2011, followed by Sourav Ganguly’s tumultuous reign in 2012 and the current season has again shown a complete lack of direction as far as the captaincy is concerned.

Let us look at the chain of events this season. Angelo Matthews- still a developing cricketer was made the captain at the start of the tournament but his poor performances as an all rounder meant that he had to be dropped and in stepped the Australian Aaron Finch into the picture.

Why? He was the only inform player at the time. It seemed to have worked when the Pune Warriors India (PWI) shocked Chennai Super Kings in Chennai but since then it has been a struggle as it has been over the past few years. However, the funniest thing is that Angelo Matthews has now returned to the side and the captain is still Aaron Finch. So why didn’t they make Finch the captain in the first place? Truth be told; from the current evidence it seems the think tank has serious issues with making up its mind as to who they want as their leader. This season is almost over for them but hopefully they would have a better plan in place for the leadership role in the seasons to come.

Pune Warrior Player Aaron Finch 193x300 How Pune Warriors India Lost the Plot

Aaron Finch – Crisis Man ?

Team Selection & Transfer Activity

Talking about the transfer activity of the PWI is another sore point for most of their supporters and observers in general. The team seems to suffer from a problem of plenty in some departments and a problem of too little in some others. For instance, they have a brilliant batting roster with the likes of Uthappa, Finch, Steven Smith and Yuvraj Singh leading the charge along with enterprising all rounders in Marlon Samuels and Mitchell Marsh.

This season Yuvraj missed the beginning of the season due to an injury and later on Marlon Samuels pulled out of the tournament due to an injury of his own. However, the departures could have been easily compensated by giving a seasoned batsman like Ross Taylor a decent run. Mind you, Taylor had been bought during the off season from the Delhi Daredevils in order to bolster the batting line up but when the time came to do it they did not do so. Taylor played only one game. On top of that if there is anyone in that squad who has a proven record as a captain then it is Ross Taylor. Conclusion- they let a top batsman and a proven captain cool his heels in the dugout while the team bounced from one defeat to another.

Ross Taylor Of Pune Warriors 300x207 How Pune Warriors India Lost the Plot

The fast bowling department is something that they have had a major problem since their very first season due to the absence of a genuine game changing bowler in their ranks. What did they do? They spent a whopping $725000 on Sri Lankan ‘mystery spinner’ Ajantha Mendis but the real mystery was the fact that they did not have anyone else to fall back on if the plan did not work. The fact that the Sri Lankan is not so mysterious anymore has been cruelly exposed in the matches that he has played so far. Now they have the same old bowling attack that keeps carted around the ground in every other game.

Although they have a legendary fast bowler like Allan Donald as their head coach it is quite clear that he is not making much of an impression on the likes of Ashok Dinda who gets clobbered in the death overs regularly. Again, the absence of a genuine fallback option is hurting them.

The Way Forward

Another season will go by with the Pune Warriors ending up with the wooden spoon but all is not doom and gloom as a new auction window approaches in which almost the entire pool of players will be on offer barring of course those players who will be retained by their franchises. The Pune Warriors would need to take a few tough steps for this to work and that would mean the non retention of their entire team for starters.

Yuvraj Singh is no longer the player he was and although he is great for building a brand he might not be the player one would build a team around. In addition to that, the team would need a new captain who is aware of the intricacies of this format and can also change the course of a game with whatever his stronger suit is. Secondly, they would need to build up a stronger pool of bowlers and they can do that with a good scouting network which will be able to unearth bowlers from the domestic circuit or the overseas leagues as well as by prudent spending on international stars in the auction. The first three seasons have been poor and considering the investment that Sahara has made towards with team (they have even built a brand new stadium) it is only natural that most cricket fans would like this team to compete more often than just making up the numbers. Hopefully, they correct the blunders of the seasons past and emerge a competitive unit in the next season onwards. After all, we all remember KKR’s resurgence after they booted out their entire team.

Also See:

IPL: It’s Not Cricket

Image Source : IANS

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