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Indian T20 League 2021 Playoff Race Explained

After Team Mumbai’s comprehensive win against Team Rajasthan at Sharjah, it seems more like a two-horse race between Mumbai and Team Kolkata for the fourth and final playoff spot in the 2021 season. Team Delhi, Chennai and Bangalore have already booked their playoff berth and are fighting to finish in the top two given that the leaders get to play an additional match in their quest to qualify for the final.

Even though Team Punjab and Rajasthan can only get to twelve points, they still have the slimmest chance possible to make it to the playoffs. Let’s find out how.

TEAM KOLKATA

Matches: 13 | Points: 12 | Net Run Rate: 0.294

In the previous two seasons, Team Kolkata have missed out on a playoffs spot on net run rate. This time around they have ensured that they don’t have to be stuck with their calculators at the end of the season looking at net run rate possibilities. They have a healthy one this time around and a win against Team Rajasthan in their final match by any margin would ensure them the fourth playoff spot.

If they happen to lose to Rajasthan at Sharjah, then they’d be backing Team Hyderabad to do them a favour and beat Team Mumbai for them to qualify on net run rate.

TEAM MUMBAI

Matches: 13 | Points: 12 | Net Run Rate: -0.048

Defending champions Team Mumbai find themselves in an unusual situation this time around. They are struggling to get through the line in this season but their latest victory over Team Rajasthan would give them some hope of getting the job done. They still have plenty to think about if they want to qualify for the playoffs.

The easiest way for Mumbai would be if they beat Team Hyderabad in their final match and Rajasthan beat Kolkata. Then the net run rate won’t come into the picture. If Kolkata were to win their match, then Mumbai would need a colossal win in their final game. If Kolkata were to win by even a run then Mumbai would require a victory by more than 85 runs against Hyderabad.

TEAM PUNJAB

Matches: 13 | Points: 10 | Net Run Rate: -0.241

This is where things get a bit tricky. Team Punjab are all but out of this competition but mathematically can still go through. They have a game against Team Chennai as their final fixture. They will be hoping for a heavy Kolkata defeat as well as Mumbai losing to Team Hyderabad. They themselves will have to win handsomely if they were to improve on their less than impressive net run rate.

TEAM RAJASTHAN

Matches: 13 | Points: 10 | Net Run Rate: -0.737

The manner in which Team Rajasthan lost to Team Mumbai has put their hopes of qualifying for the playoffs in the bin. They have a match against their straight competitors for the fourth-placed spot, Team Kolkata.

Their shambolic net run rate would be a massive issue for them to qualify for the playoffs. Even if Mumbai were to lose to Hyderabad, Rajasthan would require to beat Kolkata by more than 125 runs, which is as unlikely as Team Hyderabad winning the title in 2021. It seems like the journey for Rajasthan is all but over.

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