After a 13-run loss to Royal Challengers Bangalore, which brought defending champions Chennai Super Kings to the verge of elimination, skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni pulled up his batters for poor shot selection.
RCB reached 173 for 8 after being put to bat first before returning to defend the score and reduce CSK to 160 for 8 on Wednesday. CSK openers Ruturaj Gaikwad and Devon Conway hit 51 in the power-play but their middle-order faltered. Both Gaikwad, who hit three fours and a six, and Conway, with six fours and two sixes, looked fluent before falling to the Bangalore spinners.
Gaikwad holed out off Shahbaz Ahmed after scoring 28 off 23 balls. Sri Lankan Wanindu Hasaranga dismissed Conway for a 37-ball 56. In-form pair Robin Uthappa (1) and Ambati Rayudu (10) both succumbed to Glenn Maxwell’s off-spin. Batting all-rounder Maxwell finished with 2-22 from his four overs.
Australian seamer Josh Hazlewood bowled four tight overs, dismissing Dhoni for two and giving away only 19 runs. Harshal Patel took three key wickets – Moeen Ali (34), Ravindra Jadeja (3) and Dwaine Pretorius (13) – for 35 runs in his four-over spell.
After the match, CSK captain Dhoni said, “We did well to restrict them to 170-odd runs. We had to get off to a good start, everything was up to the mark and what let us down was the batsmanship. When you are chasing you know what is required and at times you have to curb your instinct and see what really the situation is demanding rather than playing your shots,” Dhoni said.
“The shot selection could have been better towards the end. We had a good start and had wickets in hand, the surface kept getting better but we lost wickets at regular intervals. We can look back at some of the shots, if we take care of those things... chasing is about calculations and batting first is more about instinct. Ultimately as a batter or bowler you are in the middle and you have to decide.”
Meanwhile, winning captain Faf du Plessis said his team was in need of this win after three successive losses. With this victory, RCB climbed to fourth place in the overall standings. However, he was also not hesitant in stating that his team will have to “keep improving in the batting department.”
“We definitely needed that. We put up a decent total. We are moving in the right direction. We have been very good in the bowling department,” he said at the post match presentation.
“I thought 165 was a par score on that (wicket) and anything above that was a bonus. I thought the powerplay was a good time to score. The fielding was amazing. Some great catching and good bowling indeed. We are very lucky to have experienced guys. Very good to have me lean on the senior players.”
“Just keep improving in the batting department. We want one of the top four to bat through. Need to keep playing the positive brand of cricket. Once you get an opportunity to think of the run rate in a match, you will be able to put on the gas and go for it.”
(With inputs from AFP)