Bangalore, May 18 (IANS) Rain gods played spoilsport for thousands of fans late Saturday with a heavy shower delaying the Pepsi IPL-6 T20 tournament’s last league tie between hosts Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) and Chennai Super Kings (CSK) at the Chinnaswamy stadium here.
What started as a drizzle after a hot and humid day, turned into a heavy rain 90 minutes before the game was to start at 8 p.m., forcing the organisers to cover the green ground with massive tarpaulin covers and protect the pitch from getting wet.
When the rain stopped an hour later, bringing cheer to the frenzied fans and respite to the organisers, whose groundsmen swung into action to take off the covers, hovering dark clouds opened up again leading to another spell of rain and delaying the match further.
“The match is already behind schedule by over an hour as there is no let-up in the rain. With rains gods still playing hide and seek, the match may be shortened as the number of overs will be reduced from the stipulated 20,” a worried official of the Karnataka State Cricket Association (KSCA) told IANS.
Though about 15,000 die-hard fans flocked to the stadium in the city centre by the time the looming dark clouds opened up after sunset, their patience was tested as there was no respite from the on-and-off rain.
The sudden downpour came haunting the organsiers and the restless fans as it seemed to be a repeat of what happened April 25, 2012 when intermittent rains washed out a similar clash between RCB and CSK, forcing them to share a point.
“Even a league match between RCB and Rajasthan Royals (RR) April 19, 2011 had to be called off as there was no let-up in the rain that night, making the teams share a point each,” the official recalled sadly.
With Sunrisers Hyderabad beating RR by 23 runs late Friday in Hyderabad and moving up to the fourth spot in the IPL-6 table, the home team (RCB) has been driven to a do-or-die situation as a must-win game has been reduced to a formality.
“It’s very disappointing to see rain gods playing with the fortunes of RCB that is desperate for a win to sneak into the play-offs. It is too much of a coincidence to see it’s raining again when the home team had to play against CSK in a must-win game,” lamented Sai Krishna, a techie who came early to watch the match.