Fielding two dozen players in 12 matches of the Pepsi-IPL-VI has hardly done Pune Warriors India any good.
In fact, it has lost 10 matches and is placed at the bottom of the table below Delhi Daredevils and Thursday’s opponent Kolkata Knight Riders.
Chopping and changing
PWI has earned notoriety for chopping and changing the team and this is reflected in a mere 10 wins in the 42 matches it has played in the league in three years.
It fielded 25 and 23 players in the first and second season and won only four matches each.
Bad luck has followed it right from the start with Michael Clarke’s back ailment forcing him out of the tournament.
Then, the team management named different captains before finding stability in the third one — Aaron Finch — who was actually a replacement for Michael Clarke.
There have been quite a few bright sparks though for PWI. Its openers Robin Uthappa (343 runs) and Finch (341 runs) laid strong foundations with partnerships of 97, 96, 83, 76 and 58 on five occasions.
But, even the best partnership of 97 against Rajasthan Royals at Jaipur did not fetch a positive result.
Skipper Finch said it would be nice to finish off the last four games with four wins and gain some respect for the team. “The IPL is the hardest tournament in the world after the internationals. I was not picked at the auction, but to be named captain is a great honour.
“We have been improving a lot in the last few games. There have been four or five games where we have been in a winning position, but did not capitalise on it. It’s frustrating, but it’s good to see the boys fighting hard,” said Finch at his team’s training session on Wednesday.
It has not been any different for the Gautam Gambhir-led KKR in terms of wins. The 65-run defeat to Mumbai Indians has virtually eliminated it from the play-offs.
Eoin Morgan said on Tuesday that lack of consistency had been the main reason for KKR’s poor run. “It was a defeat tough to digest. We have not shown the skills needed to win matches. But we can be a dangerous side now,” he said.
PWI has won just 10 out of its 42 IPL games Uthappa and Finch have been in good form
PWI has won just 10 out of its 42 IPL games
Uthappa and Finch have been in good form