Kolkata: Rising Pune Supergiants chief coach Stephen Fleming has expressed his displeasure over the Duckworth-Lewis method, calling it “rubbish” as his side lost to the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) by eight wickets in an Indian Premier League (IPL) match.
Pune were 103/6 in 17.4 overs when rain halted play at the Eden Gardens on Saturday night. When play resumed, the Knights were given a revised target of 66 runs in nine overs via the D/L method which almost killed the contest for Supergiants.
“Duckworth-Lewis is rubbish. As soon as you get to D/L, the game is over. I’ve been saying that for years. The others have said it as well but there’s no point carrying on too much about it,” Fleming said at the post match media conference just after KKR chased down the target in five overs.
Asked if the International Cricket Council (ICC) needs to have a look into the method, the former New Zealand captain said: “It needs to be addressed. There’s no willingness to change. It’s not made for a T20 game. It’s just ridiculous really and until it’s addressed you just hope the skies don’t open up.”
During the loss, Supergiants captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni played an ungainly innings scoring just eight not out from 22 balls but Fleming leapt to his defence.
“It was hard, a difficult pitch to bat on. The approach was to play positive cricket but we lost wickets because the ball turned. It was difficult to score with Piyush Chawla and Sunil Narine bowling,” he said.
“With spinners on, it would have been a difficult chase. Soon they reduced the score, and with the wet ball and rain, it was difficult. There was not much about the game apart from the fact that rain curtailed in what could have been a tight chase.”
Fleming added a score of around 140 would have been a fighting total on the turning strip.
“We could have got 135 or 140, maybe 25 runs in the last three overs. We thought 135 would have been a good score. With Dhoni there we were looking at those last two overs in particular,” he said.
“But we were denied that, so that’s one aspect of our score. It was slowing, turning. Probably it would have got slower if there was no rain.”
When Dhoni came out to bat his counterpart Gautam Gambhir surrounded him with men around his bat. The plan worked and Dhoni failed to keep the scoreboard ticking.
“The ball was turning and spinners were getting a lot of help. So we thought of setting an attacking field against Mahi bhai,” said KKR’s Ankit Rajpoot who played his debut game.
“We wanted to create pressure and get him out early, he can be dangerous if he hangs around. Left-handers can have it easy, while Mahi bhai being a right-hander we wanted to go for an attacking field.”