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The semi-final ready reckoner

Posted by James On 10:43 AM 0 comments

A look at what each team needs to do to make it to the IPL semi-finals.

Mumbai Indians: Already through to the semi-finals

Royal Challengers Bangalore: Bangalore's win against Rajasthan, and their high net run rate, means they're almost certainly through to the next stage. Their worst case scenario will be losing to Mumbai, and if other results follow a pattern, there could be five teams tied on 14 points, fighting for three places. Even then, it's extremely difficult to imagine Bangalore's net run rate not being among the top three out of those five.

Chennai Super Kings: A win in one of their next two matches will almost certainly see Chennai through to the semis, since their net run rate is so high. If they lose both, though, they'll be on a sticky wicket, and will need to depend on other results: Deccan will have to lose both their matches, while Kolkata will need to beat Rajasthan but lose to Mumbai. In that case, Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore will be through, while four teams - Deccan, Chennai, Kolkata and Rajasthan - will be stuck on 12 points each. The team with the highest net run rate will make the cut, which will give Chennai a decent chance, though two defeats will mean their NRR will come down from its current high.

Delhi Daredevils: Delhi's net run rate isn't as good as Bangalore's or Chennai's, which is why they'll need to win both their matches (or win at least one very convincingly) to assure themselves of qualification. Even if they beat Chennai, a loss in the last game against Deccan could make things difficult for them. If Deccan win their last two they'll move to 16, and there could be a scenario where Delhi are tied on 14 and fighting for one of the last two spots with Bangalore, Chennai and Rajasthan (or Kolkata). Both Bangalore and Chennai currently have a much better NRR than Delhi, and hence the worry for Delhi.

Rajasthan Royals: Even a win in their final match, against Kolkata, won't assure them of qualification, as there could be a scenario with five teams - Rajasthan, Chennai, Bangalore, Deccan and Delhi - being tied on 14, fighting for three places. Rajasthan's NRR of -0.421 puts them at a distinct disadvantage. Their best case will be if they beat Kolkata, and the following happens: Delhi win their last two matches, while Chennai and Deccan lose theirs. Then Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore and Rajasthan will go through without NRR coming into play.

Even if Rajasthan lose their last match they could be fighting for the last place if Delhi win their last two, while Deccan and Chennai lose theirs, and if Kolkata lose to Mumbai. Then, Deccan, Chennai, Kolkata, Rajasthan and Punjab will all have 12 points, and NRR will decide the final slot.

Deccan Chargers: Deccan's poor NRR means they'll need to win their last two to feel comfortable about qualification. If they win only one, they'll want to get through on points, so that NRR don't come into play. That's possible if Delhi win their last two, while Chennai and Rajasthan lose their remaining games, and if Kolkata lose to Mumbai. Then Mumbai, Delhi, Deccan and Bangalore will go through on points.

Kolkata Knight Riders: Like Deccan, they'll want the semi-final slots to be decided on points, not NRR, since they're languishing at -0.632. Kolkata's best chance is for Delhi to win their last two and for Chennai and Deccan to lose theirs. Then, if Kolkata win both their games, they'll be through on points with Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore.

Kings XI Punjab: Their only chance, a very remote one, is to fight for the last slot on NRR. Refer second paragraph for Rajasthan Royals.

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