Rain gods play spoilsport with RCB fans

Bangalore: The much awaited tie between hosts Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) and Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in the Indian Premier League (IPL-V) T-20 at the Chinnaswamy stadium here Wednesday was washed out as rain gods played spoilsport with die-hard fans waiting for a cracker of a contest.

Even as eight million denizens of this tech hub welcomed the respite from an extended dry spell and scorching summer days, it was a testing time for about 20,000 fans across the stands, as they waited for the prolonged drizzle to halt so that they could enjoy at least a truncated game of 10 or five overs each between the two-time title holders and the twice runners-up.

"Any amount of rain at the height of summer season is welcome relief from hot and humid days but not on a night when we have been waiting to watch the home team (RCB) avenge their five-wicket loss in a close game at Chennai on April 12," a dejected S. Govindarajan told IANS in the eastern stands.

Though a sudden spell in the evening after sunset forced the organisers -- the Karnataka State Cricket Association (KSCA) -- to delay the start by an hour and held the toss at 8.30 p.m., a cloudy sky opened up, putting off the start by another hour.

"We were hoping to have at least a 10-over or even a five-over game in the last hour. Our best efforts to start the match belatedly dashed off as the drizzle turned into a downpour after 10.30 p.m., ruling out the prospects of a ball being bowled," a disappointed KSCA official told IANS as the match was called off.

As his wont, Virat Kohli, who was to lead RCB in place of captain Daniel Vettori, after winning the toss and opting to field, had to share just one point from the abandoned match with their arch rival CSK. After a final inspection by the two umpires, S. Asnani and B.R. Doctrove, match referee R.R. Jadeja ruled out the possibility of any play.

Of the four league ties RCB played on the home turf here between April 7-17, they won two against Delhi Daredevils and Pune Warriors and lost the other two to Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and Rajasthan Royals.

With nine points from four wins and one from this abandoned tie, RCB move up the ladder to the fourth position but behind CSK with same (nine) points, as the latter has better net run rate (NRR) of +0.333 as against its -0.192 NRR.

Delhi Daredevils, with 10 points from five wins out of seven games lead the table followed by KKR with nine points from four wins out of eight games and a NRR of +0.432. (IANS)