The (un)dew advantage: what choice do teams batting first have?

That dew has had an exaggerated impression on IPL 2022 is evident not simply from the outcomes to this point – chasing groups have gained seven of the primary eight video games – but additionally from how the gamers and coaches have spoken about it.

“We’re going to bowl first,” Shreyas Iyer, the Kolkata Knight Riders captain, mentioned on the toss on Friday, “and the reason is obviously the swimming pool in the evening, which we’ll see.”

Just below 24 hours earlier than that, Moeen Ali had worn a haunted look whereas being interviewed by host broadcaster Star Sports between innings. “It’s going to be difficult because of the dew and they [Lucknow Super Giants] have a brilliant batting line-up,” he mentioned. “We are going to have to bowl well.” These have been the phrases of a person whose group, Chennai Super Kings, had simply scored 210.

Super Kings duly misplaced that recreation. It was the third time the 200-mark had been breached by a group batting first this season, and the second time it had been chased down.

Punjab Kings had chased down 206 towards Royal Challengers Bangalore on the second day of the event, and had performed so with a complete over to spare. You can perceive, then, why they batted the way in which they did when Knight Riders despatched them in on Friday.

It’s a technique that may look spectacular when it comes off, and for some time it seemed prefer it would possibly, notably when Bhanuka Rajapaksa clattered Shivam Mavi for 4, 6, 6, 6 within the fourth over of the match.

It also can result in flurries of wickets, and trigger groups to be bowled out inside 20 overs. This was Kings’ eventual destiny on Friday, as they folded for 137 with ten balls of their innings unused.

Teams batting first know, after all, that they threat being bowled out for 135 in the event that they set their sights on 220. But Kings nonetheless selected that strategy. So did Knight Riders two days in the past; they went simply as onerous and collapsed simply as spectacularly towards Royal Challengers.

That these groups selected this strategy over a extra conservative one which may have introduced them 170 at finest or 150 at worst ought to let you know all you should find out about their evaluation of the circumstances. They did not suppose they may win with 150 or 170. As the ESPNcricinfo columnist Kartikeya Date would possibly put it, they selected competitiveness over respectability.

It did not come off for Punjab on Friday, simply because it did not come off for Knight Riders on Wednesday. But equally, it got here off for Super Kings on Thursday, nevertheless it did not matter; they nonetheless misplaced, their bowlers powerless to defend 210 in one other second-innings swimming pool.

It’s too early to foretell if the remainder of the season will comply with the identical sample, nevertheless it’s onerous to see it change an excessive amount of, on condition that the identical 4 venues will host all the league part, and that three of them expertise the coastal humidity of Mumbai.

The dew in all probability will not go away. At least among the groups will proceed setting their sights on mammoth first-innings totals in a bid to beat the drawback of dropping the toss. It will come off typically, it will not come off at different instances, however it can in all probability stay their solely approach to give themselves an opportunity.

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