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IPL 2022 Playoff Race: 5-Team Tussle For Remaining Playoff Spots, GT and LSG In The Box Seat

2022/11/11
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With more than 2/3rd of the Indian Premier League done; it is that time of the year when teams start to scramble for points in view of finishing in the top four. It has reached a phase where the team's performances and the manner of victory take a back seat, while results and getting points on the board take precedence, especially for teams in the midfield.

There is a pattern that is generally formed by this phase of the league, with 2 teams sitting comfortably at the top, while one team has a disastrous campaign and sits last and the rest battle for the remaining playoff spots.

This season is no different and there is already a huge scrap for positions between teams in midfield. As many as 8 teams are still in contention for the four playoff spots. The two debutants in the IPL, the Gujarat Titans and the Lucknow Super Giants, have occupied the top two spots and seem to have put some distance between them and the rest of the field. The Chennai Super Kings and the Mumbai Indians are almost out of contention as they sit in 9th and 10th.

This season, the chasing pack consists of 5 teams, vying for the two remaining playoff spots. With matches coming thick and fast, it's all hands on deck for these teams to secure a place in the top 4. Here, we assess each team's chances of making it into the top four.

IPL 2022 Playoff Race: 5-Team Tussle For Remaining Playoff Spots

IPL 2022 Playoff Race Team 1: Lucknow Super Giants

P - 11, Won - 8, Lost - 3, Points - 16, Pos - 1, NRR - +0.703

The Lucknow Super Giants sit at the top of the points table with 8 wins from their first 11 games. They have almost made it into the playoffs, although mathematically, they could still lose out. The only scenario in which they wouldn't make the playoffs is if they lost all their remaining games and have a lower net run rate than their competitors, which is quite an unlikely scenario.

For now, their aim will be to focus on finishing in the top 2, which will enable them to play in Qualifier 1. Even with a solitary win, they could make it into the top 2, if other results go their way.

IPL 2022 Playoff Race Team 2: Gujarat Titans

P - 11, Won - 8, Lost - 3, Points - 16, Pos - 2, NRR - +0.120

The Gujarat Titans, too, have made a strong case for a playoff spot with 8 wins from their first 11 games. A win from their next three games will almost guarantee them a place in the playoffs, but would ideally want at least two matches to go their way to seal their place. With their strong net run rate, they too will be vying for a place in the top 2 along with Lucknow.

IPL 2022 Playoff Race Team 3: Rajasthan Royals

P - 11, Won - 7, Lost - 4, Points - 14, Pos - 3, NRR - +0.326

After two disappointing losses on the bounce, the Rajasthan Royals have picked up an important victory against the Punjab Kings to get their campaign back on track. They have solidified their position in the top 4, by picking up their 7th win of the season.

Another victory would put them very much in contention, although they could still miss out. Their next game against LSG could be key for them if they want to finish in the top 2. Even if they lose that fixture, they could still finish a comfortable 3rd by winning the next one or two games, depending upon other results. After LSG, they will face the Delhi Capitals and the Chennai Super Kings.

IPL 2022 Playoff Race Team 4: Royal Challengers Bangalore

P - 11, Won - 6, Lost - 5, Points - 12, Pos - 4, NRR - -0.444

Royal Challengers Bangalore's season has been a mixed bag so far but they are still very much in the hunt for a top-four place. They picked up their 6th win of the campaign with a vital victory against CSK.

Their next two games against the Sunrisers and Punjab Kings will decide if they reach the playoffs, while the game against GT could be crucial if they lose one of the first two. Ideally, they would want to secure three victories from the remaining three games as that would give them a shot at the top 2. Even if they reach 16 points, their negative net run rate of -0.444 might hamper their chances.

IPL 2022 Playoff Race Team 5: Delhi Capitals

P - 10, Won - 5, Lost - 5, Points - 10, Pos - 5, NRR - +0.641

After finishing in the top four in the last three editions of the IPL, the Delhi Capitals have struggled for consistency this season. They haven't yet won two consecutive games this season, which shows the level of the inconsistency of the Rishabh Pant-led side. But they are still in with a chance of making the playoffs, with 5 wins and 5 losses from 10 games.

Their next game is against CSK and if they dispatch them, their next two games against PBKS and RR will be huge, followed by a game against MI. With a far superior net run rate than the rest of the field, Delhi might need just 3 victories out of their last four, while they will be in with a shout for a top 2 place if they pick up maximum points.

IPL 2022 Playoff Race Team 6: Sunrisers Hyderabad

P - 10, Won - 5, Lost - 5, Points - 10, Pos - 6, NRR - +0.325

Sunrisers Hyderabad has had a topsy-turvy campaign so far, to say the least. They started the season badly with two losses, but bounced back brilliantly to win five on the trot, but have now suffered three consecutive losses. Their next four games will be against RCB, KKR, MI, and PBKS.

Both Mumbai and Kolkata are virtually out of the playoff race and the Sunrisers wouldn't want anything less than maximum points. The games against RCB and PBKS will also be a great opportunity for them to win and stop their rivals from picking up points. Like Delhi, their positive net run rate might leave them needing 3 wins instead of 4 to qualify.

IPL 2022 Playoff Race Team 7: Punjab Kings

P - 11, Won - 5, Lost - 6, Points - 10, Pos - 7, NRR - -0.231

The Punjab Kings received a body blow to their playoff chances with their loss against the Rajasthan Royals. They now have to win all their remaining games to have any chance of making it into the playoffs. There is a distinct possibility of them finishing outside the top four even if they win all their games due to their inferior net run rate. Other results might need to go in their favor too.

The good thing is they play against the teams around them in the table, including RCB, DC, and SRH. This allows them to inflict maximum damage on their opponents while picking up victories.

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