Chennai Super Kings captain MS Dhoni admitted that anything close to 150 runs would have been a good score against Delhi Capitals at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Monday. However, CSK could only manage 136 runs on the board after Delhi Capitals captain Rishabh Pant won the toss and decided to bowl first.
CSK lost both their openers – Ruturaj Gaikwad and Faf de Plessis – early in the innings which was a big blow for the team as they are in sublime form. Subsequently, the three-time champions could not get any kind of momentum in their innings as they lost wickets at regular intervals.
It wasn’t the easiest of pitches to bat on and Delhi Capitals bowlers were right on the money. CSK batters weren’t able to get going and MS Dhoni also struggled as he trudged to 18 runs off 27 balls. Dhoni also promoted himself ahead of in-form Ravindra Jadeja and Dwayne Bravo, which was a questionable decision.
In fact, it has been noticed that the bulk of runs have been scored by the CSK openers in the ongoing season and their middle-order hasn’t had many opportunities to bat. Thus, it was a perfect opportunity for the likes of Moeen Ali and Robin Uthappa, who was playing his first match of the season, to grab their chances. Dhoni admitted that his team failed to accelerate in the middle overs and thus they could not reach a par score.
On the other hand, Delhi Capitals had to sweat hard for their win but they were able to get over the line after Shikhar Dhawan’s knock of 39 runs whereas Shimron Hetmyer provided the finishing touches.
MS Dhoni said in the post-match presentation, “We were looking to get closer to 150. After we lost a few wickets, around the 15-16th over mark the platform was nice. We failed to accelerate. I thought it was a tough pitch. Anything close to 150 would’ve been a good score. It’s a two-paced wicket. It’s not like it slowed down drastically. Can’t just play your shots. That’s what the Delhi batters also faced. The taller bowlers were getting movement. It was a very good effort to make a game out of it. Was important not to give too many in the first six. Was one expensive over in the first six, but when quality players are batting it can happen”.
Chennai Super Kings have now lost their last two matches and they would be disappointed. The MS Dhoni-led team would want to finish among the top two teams so that they could have two chances in the qualifiers. Chennai will aim to return back to the winning ways before the playoff stage.
CSK will play their last league match against Punjab Kings at the same venue on Thursday.