The IPL match fixing drama has literally engulfed the mindspace of most Indians over the past few days because of the potentially shocking revelations that it promises every second day. However, as I had mentioned in my last article, the real issue is completely different and what most rational people would be thinking is how many times they have watched the game like a fool late into the night, which might have been stage managed all along. The Delhi Police has announced that they are going to look into other games in the IPL for possible foul play but they have not made it public as to which particular games or events they will be probing. Here we present to you 5 events from IPL matches which have a fair chance of being probed by the Delhi Police.
Delhi Daredevils’ 1 Run Win Over Rajasthan Royals
This game turned on its head thanks to a ‘sensational’ over from South Afrcan fast bowler Morne Morkel when 2 well set batsmen- Ajinkya Rahane and Brad Hodge failed to get more than 3 runs off his over. Till that fateful over the Royals needed 15 to win off 12 balls, which can be regarded as a cakewalk in any form of cricket when the batting side has 9 wickets in hand, which the Royals did have. The Royals batsmen could only eke out 2 scoring shots which yielded them 3 runs and from then on they just could not make a match out of it and ended up losing by 1 run. We have seen bowlers underperforming in a particular over in spot fixing but could it be possible that even batsmen do the same?
Keiron Pollard and The Hat trick of Dropped Catches
Keiron Pollard is someone who has over the years some of the most spectacular catches in the IPL and none more so than the one handed catch he took of Shaun Marsh at the long on boundary in Mumbai. However in the game against the Chennai Super Kings he dropped three sitters one after another which gave him the dubious distinction of scoring a hat trick of dropped catches and that too of the same batsman- the ever dangerous Mike Hussey. You can watch the dropped catches here.
Chennai Super Kings’ Meltdown versus Mumbai Indians This Year
We stay with this year’s IPL and the match that must have raised eyebrows not only in the cricket watching public but also among the law enforcement personnel would be the absolute meltdown of the CSK to be all out for 79 when they were chasing a paltry 139 against the MI. Now, you might expect all fixed games to be ‘close’ games but according to the finding of the Central Bureau of Investigation in 2000, matches whose results are pre determined are always lost with a big margin to avoid whispers. So when you consider the magnitude of the defeat that two time Champions CSK suffered, then it is surely in the realm of possibility for this game to be investigated for any wrongdoing.
The Switching of Pitches Ahead of a Game between CSK and RR
Well, this one would forever be regarded as one of the worst kept secrets of the IPL when the pitch on which the game was to be played was switched at the last moment in Jaipur in the 2011 edition. As you might know, the Jaipur pitch is supposed to suit fast bowlers and works to the advantage of the home team who have a host of medium fast bowlers in their side and in fact in that same edition the RR had bowled the MI out for 98 in one of their home games. However, when the CSK were supposed to play at Jaipur the pitch was changed at the last moment and the teams had to play on an underprepared pitch on which the CSK spinners wrecked havoc. If this one is viewed from the point of view of match fixing then you can surely realise the involvement of not only the players but even certain officials who might have been responsible for changing the pitch. Ever wondered why the IPL has no pitch report prior to a game?
The Dropping of Morne Morkel
The Delhi Daredevils were one of the revelations of the last IPL and one of the biggest reasons for their turnaround was the bowling efforts of South African fast bowler Morne Morkel. The big South African took 25 wickets in 16 matches which made him the highest wicket taker in the tournament but strangely they he was dropped from the team when the DD faced the CSK in the second Qualifier game in order to decide who would play in the final. Can you imagine benching your best bowler in a knockout, must-win, high stakes game? I am sure the answer would be no. DD duly lost the game against a resurgent CSK team but DD were the firm favourites to win this game and perhaps even the final at that stage.When the DD thinktank were asked about the rationale of their baffling selection they mumbling something about ‘team combination’ which hardly made any sense considering the fact that Morkel was dropped in favour of the West Indian all rounder Andre Russell who had hardly got a look in into the side till then. The explanations do not hold water at all and no one will possibly be surprised if the dropping of Morkel is investigated as an act of corruption.
These are the 5 events that should make the spectators think that not all is as rosy with the IPL as the organisers and the BCCI try to portray. It is not about a few ‘rotten eggs’ but an entire vicious circle of bookies, players and perhaps even officials that is going to destroy the IPL in the years to come. Mind you, these 5 are some of the glaring instances which would make the intelligent spectator stop and think for a bit but whether the authorities investigate these games or not remains to be seen. Just recently Vindu Dara Singh was arrested – an individual with deep connections in Bollywood, IPL and apparently Bookies ! This story is far from over !!
By Soham Samaddar
Image Source : IANS