Has anyone else noticed the extremely high number of dropped catches in the IPL matches? It’s all the more embarrassing because most of the failures occur usually with the sky-high hits, precisely the ones you’d expect to be taken.
There was one moment during a recent match involving the Chennai Super Kings, I think, where almost every catch had failed. After a batsman offered another easy opportunity, Harsha Bhogle said, “That should be another down.” The fielder then went on to make a fool of himself, and Bhogle, incredulous, said, “I meant the batsman, not the ball!”
Here’s my theory: perhaps in our ultra-modern times, where dives and flying catches are the supposed norm, cricketers neglect the fundamentals. And, really, throwing the ball up high in the air and then catching it is the No. 1 play in the fielding manual. Didn’t we all, as children cricketers, do just that? (Two thrills: first, seeing how high you can throw the ball, and second, seeing whether or not you can then catch it.)
And finally: during the last match between Delhi and Mumbai, Dinesh Karthik dropped a difficult chance as wicketkeeper. Ashish Nehra, the bowler, very clearly called him a “behan chut,” and Karthik just stood there, looking pitiful, and took it (even though the catch he dropped came off a free hit, rendering the entire thing moot).
You know, I don’t much care for Karthik — he’s not as sure a batsman as he needs to be (as his brief stint against New Zealand showed), and he’s not at all a good keeper — but I have this idea he’s a nice guy who takes way too much flak from almost everybody. A little confidence in him, and I’m sure he’d be a hit, but until then, looks like he’ll have to deal with divas like Nehra and Gambhir.