Shreyas Iyer-1650392057430
Kolkata skipper Shreyas Iyer played a brilliant knock, but didn't show the required temperament to take his team home against Rajasthan Royals. Image Credit: Ron Gaunt /Sportzpics for IPL

Dubai: In the 30 games so far, all captains who have won the toss have decided to chase irrespective of the conditions, whether it’s a day game or day-night game, every captain just wants to chase after winning the toss. And you will be surprised 13 games have been won by the team who have batted first and 17 games by teams chasing. The difference is not much.

Captains like to have a target in shorter version of the game, like the T20. Hence they like to chase but game awareness is the key in every chase. Most of the teams who have lost the game while chasing is because they lacked that awareness, which is the key in chasing.

Let’s take Monday’s game between Kolkata Knight Riders and Rajasthan Royals. KKR, who were chasing a huge target of 218, were in control of the chase for 70 per cent of the game and had seven wickets in hand. At the end of 16 overs, they needed 40 of 24 balls. Shreyas Iyer was looking very good and was batting from the second ball of the chase and should have taken the team home. But Yuzvendra Chahal had other ideas, he turned the game on its head by picking four wickets in the 17th over.

In perfect position

Kolkata knew Chahal was bowling his last over and you can debate the left-hander Venkatesh Iyer taking a chance against him was a fair call. But after his dismissal, Iyer should have ensured there was no further damage by milking Chahal for singles and taking the game deep as his team had seven wickets in hand.

The ball was on coming on to the bat and was easy to play the pacers, which Umesh Yadav showed by tonking Trent Boult for 20 runs. But this could have been easily done by captain Shreyas and Pat Cummins, who was supposed to come in later. But the skipper, in trying to go for glory, lost his wicket and two further wickets fell, which cost Kolkata the game in the end.

Most of the teams have lost while chasing is because they have no set batsman left in the end and have paid the price for being over aggressive than having the match awareness and taking the game deep. In the modern T20 game, scoring 30 of the last two overs is very much possible as long as you are set and clearing the boundary is not as difficult as it used to be few years ago.

Players like Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav and Pant, who are the future for team India, will have to learn from this experience and see their team home in crunch situation as this is what separates the Men from the boys.