Chennai Super Kings are on a roll right now. Having played four matches, the three-time IPL champions have won thrice and are momentarily on top of the table. CSK also have the highest NRR of +1.142.
In the match against Kolkata Knight Riders, CSK batsmen produced a stupendous show with the bat. Faf du Plessis scored 95 runs while Ruturaj Gaikwad scored an excellent half-century, with Dhoni and Jadeja also adding useful runs towards the end. Chennai ended up posting a total of 220 runs on board.
CSK had a strong start to their bowling Powerplay as the Kolkata Knight Riders batting order was left crumbling after five wickets were dismissed for just 31 runs. However, Andre Russell, Dinesh Karthik, and Pat Cummins played magnificent knocks to pull KKR back into the match and almost threatened to steal the game away from CSK.
In the post-match presentation, CSK captain MS Dhoni asserted on the need to be humble and respect every opposition. “It’s important to be humble and give respect to the opposition. Every IPL team has big-hitters. I told them (his team-mates) we have good runs on the board, but we need to stay humble,” Dhoni said.
Andre Russell was at his destructive best once again after struggling for much of IPL 2020 and the first few matches of this season. Dre Russ scored a fiery 21-ball fifty. On being asked about his tactics against the West Indies big-hitter, Dhoni replied, “Only option was Jadeja because the ball was stopping and spinning.”
Faf du Plessis’ sensational knock of 95 runs earned him the Man of the Match award, but his opening partner Ruturaj Gaikwad was equally effective in giving CSK a perfect start. Gaikwad scored 64 runs in 42 deliveries and his return to form will be a positive signal for CSK who persisted with the youngster after several experts and professionals asked for his benching following a run of poor form.
“Rutu showed his class in the last IPL. We always need to assess where he is mentally. He doesn’t seem rattled and he has the basics to make it big. What would’ve helped him is the last few games last year when he wasn’t successful,” Dhoni said.
“There was enough in his reactions to suggest he wasn’t rattled. That’s what I’ve been doing all my life (applying psychology) but in a good way,” added the CSK captain.