MS Dhoni is back at the helm following CSK’s two-year ban in 2016 and 2017 IPL seasons along with Rajasthan Royals.
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Bravo: “I would like to dedicate it to the CSK fans. They have waited a long time for this and it’s only fair. I am glad I could make a match-winning contribution in this game as CSK have shown lot of faith in me.”
Dhoni: “ I think they missed the competition. CSK-Mumbai is one game that people wait to watch. We’re coming back after two years, that’s also the reason that people are eager to watch us in action.
I’m a practical person, so I was hoping in the dressing room that the quantum of defeat wasn’t too big. The way Bravo batted, it was really good to see him take the responsibility. Don’t think we batted well as a team. But it’s the first game, so we’ll take the positives out of it. The kind of players we have got, our selection will be based on horses for courses. We’ll have to keep an eye on lot of things.”
Kedar Jadhav says he might be out for a couple of weeks or even a month. Rohit Sharma laments his bowlers’ failure to land the yorkers. Dhoni couldn’t have asked for a better comeback to his CSK career.
CSK WIN BY 1 WICKET Three dot balls is followed by a terrific six, one-legged and pulled behind square for a SIX. Tahir leaves his bat and jumps on his teammate. Scores level.....and Jadav spoils the Munbai party with a thumping drive through the off-side and CHENNAI WIN! What a humdinger to start things off and understandably, the Chennai fans are elated.
CSK 159/9 in 19 overs Oh boy, this is sensational stuff from Bravo. One length and full-toss delivery from Bumrah and he is smashed for two back-to-back sixes. The next ball yields a couple. The fourth ball of the over is perfect yorker, Bravo blocks it out and the ball hits the stumps but the bails don’t come off. After playing a blinder, the West Indian scoops the ball straight to cover. More drama at the Wankhede as Jadhav comes on to bat. Take a bow, Bravo.
D Bravo c Rohit Sharma b Bumrah 68 (30)
CSK 139/8 in 18 overs Is there a twist in the tale? McClenaghan is being clubbed mercilessly by Bravo, who is single-handedly trying to make a match out of this. Two sixes and a four from it as 20 runs come of the over. 27 needed from the last two overs now.
CSK 119/8 in 17 overs Mumbai have victory within sights as Manchester United make a remarkable comeback elsewhere. Mark Wood, going for a big heave behind square, only manages to get the toe-end of the bat and it’s a simple take for Mustafizur. Pandya ges his third.
M Wood c Mustafizur b H Pandya 1 (3)
CSK 115/7 in 16 overs Bravo slams a thumping six off Bumrah. The ball just about manages to hit the boundary skirting. The strategic time-out is taken and CSK need 51 from the last four overs.
WICKET! CSK 106/7 in 15 overs Some lusty hitting from Bravo reduces the deficit but that won’t do the trick. McClenaghan comes back into the attack and Harbhajan fails to read the slow one. The Indian veteran paddles the ball straight to the hands of Bumrah at third man, who takes a simple catch. Another one bites the dust. It’s left to Bravo to pull this off for Chennai.
Harbhajan Singh c Bumrah b McClenaghan 8 (5)
Meanwhile, Kedar Jadhav has left the field for treatment.
WICKET! CSK 84/6 in 13 overs Markande is on to bowl his final over and he faces the wrath of Bravo’s blade. The West Indian steps out and thumps the ball over long-on for a SIX. The Chennai medical staff rush on to the field as Jadhav calls for treatment. After a lengthy break, Markande continues his dream debut as Chahar is stumped while trying to go for a long hop.
D Chahar st Kishan b Markande 0 (1)
WICKET! CSK 75/5 in 12 overs Jadeja finally displays his batting prowess by punching Mustafizur down the ground and the ball reaches the boundary. Markande, meanwhile, is earning plenty of plaudits on socical media for his efforts with the balll....and Mumbai pick up another wicket as Jadeja is deceived by a cutter while going for a wild slog. Suryakumar at mid-off takes a safe catch. More trouble for Chennai.
R Jadeja c Suryakumar b Mustafizur Rahman 12 (13)
CSK 67/4 in 11 overs Jadhav breaks the shackles by steping out and depositing the ball over long-on for a SIX. Finally, the batsmen rotate strike with singles, they pick up four of them to end the over. Eleven from the Markande over and Chennai need more of these.
CSK 56/4 in 10 overs Pandya continues to be in a state of discomfort but once again, gets the better of the batsmen in his third over. Jadeja and Jadhav are struggling to get any sort of rhythm going in their innings. Just five from the over.
WICKET! CSK 51/4 in 9 overs Markande snaps the big wicket of Dhoni and it’s through a quicker delivery. The umpire’s original decision was not out but the confident Mumbai camp took the decision. There was absolutely no doubt about the verdict once the replays were shown on the screen. Mumbai are on top and Chennai need a near-miracle from here. Markande ends the over by teasing Jadeja outside the off-stump and earns two dot balls.
MS Dhoni lbw b Markande 5 (6)
CSK 49/3 in 8 overs Every run of Dhoni is cheered and the Chennai captain is off to a steady start. Bumrah errs with a no-ball but he gets away as the free-hit ball was a classic yorker that cramped the batsman for room.
CSK 44/3 in 7 overs Dream start for Markande, who takes only two balls before picking up his first wicket. Ambati Rayudu goes for a wild sweep and misses. The umpire raises his finger and the batsman decides not to review it. The leg-spinner nearly gets another one after he raps Jadhav on the pads. Replays show that the ball was hitting the stumps.
WICKET! CSK 42/2 in 6 overs Hardik Pandya is grimacing but soldiers on. In the fourth ball of the over, he bowled a peach of a yorker to Rayudu, who manages to keep it out. More drama in the over as Raina failed to ground his bat from a throw and could have been dismissed had the ball hit the stumps. Hardik then peppers Raina with a short one and he can pull it only as far as Krunal at mid-on.
S Raina c Krunal Pandya b Hardik Pandya 4 (6)
CSK 39/1 in 5 overs Fine comeback by McClenaghan, who gives away only four runs from the over. Quite predictably, he tested Raina with the short ball.
WICKET! CSK 35/1 in 5 overs What a SIX from Watson. He just leans on to the delivery and strokes the ball to the extra-cover boundary. That was effortless stuff. But....Pandya gets his man as Watson’s flick on the leg-side doesn’t get the distance and the ball goes only as far as Evin Lewis at deep-fine. Rayudu, though, ends in the same manner as the last one pushing the ball through the covers. Another four.
Pandya has braved a nasty injury he suffered earlier and will bowl the fourth over.
CSK 19/0 in 3 overs Bumrah is brought on and the Chennai openers immediately go on the defensive. No sign of any of his pin-point yorkers yet as the pacer sticks to a good length and not giving any room for the batters to free their arms. Just three runs of Bumrah’s first over.
CSK 16/0 in 2 overs Mustafizur is welcomed with a crunching lofted drive over cover by Watson, another boundary for Chennai. The Bangladeshi makes a good comeback with one of his trademark slow cutters. It is Rayudu who has the final say in the over, though, with a puch from the front foot, and the ball reaches the cover fence. Another four and Chennai are on the march.
CSK 7/0 in 1 over It was a steady start from Rayudu and Watson, who exchanged three singles at the start of the over. The senior Indian player then decides to take the attack to the bowler, stepping out and thumping the ball to the long-off fence for a boundary.
Mitchell McClenaghan to start proceedings for Mumbai.
Fine finish for Chennai after it looked like the hosts would touch the 190-run mark.
MI 165/4 in 20 Overs Bravo floors Hardik with a stunning yorker. Once again, the West Indian is spot on with his lengths and was a revelation with his slower ones. The innings ends on a sombre note with Hardik lying on the floor after running into Bravo’s heel while going for a second. The medical staff help him off the field. Bad news for Mumbai, whose fans have gone stunned in silence.
MI 160/4 in 19 Overs Wood continues to go on a leather hunt as Krunal smashes him for back-to-back fours down the ground. Both the boundaries were powerfully struck shots back past the bowler. Krunal then survives a mistimed pull as the ball lands safely in the mid-wicket region. Krunal then ends the over with a smashing one-legged SIX over the fine-leg fielder. Wow, that was Brian Lara-ish from the older Pandya.
MI 143/4 in 18 Overs Fine over by Bravo, just giving away three runs as the brothers find it hard to get his yorkers and slow deliveries away. Just three from the over. Credit to Dhoni’s field placings, covering the area behind square.
MI 140/4 in 17 Overs Wood comes back and the Pandya brothers take him on. Krunal whacks the Englishman down the ground for a six. He also gets a couple of boundaries, running the ball to the third-man fence and one with the pull. 19 runs from the over and Mumbai look set touch the 170-mark.
MI 121/4 in 16 Overs Chennai have pulled it back in the last couple of overs with a wicket and a not giving away many runs. Tahir and Watson have been tight, maintaining a stump-to-stump line.
WICKET! Fine comeback from Tahir as Kishan goes for the long hop, sweeping across the line and Wood pouches a safe catch from short-third. Tahir goes on his victory run. Fine knock from Ishan
Ishan Kishan c Wood b Tahir 40 (29)
MI 112/2 in 14 Overs Wood continues and Hardik Pandya breaks the shackles with a duck-pull, which gets him four runs. Pandya then treats the Englishman with a ramp shot, trickling it to the third-man fence. Pandya keeps strike with a quickly-taken single and the pressure is still on Chennai.
WICKET! MI 98/3 in 12.3 Overs It’s a welcome breakthrough for Mumbai as they finally break the partnership, which has yielded 78 valuable runs for the home side. Watson’s short delivery hurries Suryakumar, who can only manage to find the waiting hands of Harbhajan Singh at fine-leg. The former KKR man, though, can be proud of what he managed to pull off here.
Suryakumar Yadav c Harbhajan Singh b Watson 43 (29)
MI 97/2 in 12 Overs Anything you can do Ishan, says Suryakumar. Bravo gets off to a shocker as Suryakumar continues to be formidable with his bottom hand. He brings up three back-to-back boundaries which included a half-chance at mid-off. Jadeja was the fielder. The runs keep on coming for Mumbai, 14 off it.
MI 83/2 in 11 Overs Ishan Kishan has cut loose! Imran Tahir gets off to a horrendous start as the left-hander targets the area back over the bowler’s head and earns two fours and a SIX in the first three balls of the over. Jadeja had a half-chance at long-on but the ball narrowly went over him and sailed over the boundary. Terrific over for the home side.
MI 65/2 in 10 Overs Ishan Kishan is teased with a menacing bouncer from Mark Wood. The left-hander gets a single from the third ball with a misconnected pull shot. Once again, Suryakumar goes for a booming drive but misses. Just three runs in Wood’s first over in the IPL.
MI 62/2 in 9 Overs Suryakumar is giving MS Dhoni a problem or two as he is finding gaps with ease at the moment. Thanks to some fine fielding in the deep, Mumbai can only get a couple of twos at the start of the over. Once again, Suryakumar pulls a leaf out of the stand-and-deliver copybook with another thumping drive through the off-side. Ten runs from the over and the strategic time-out (Yes, that still exists) is taken.
MI 52/2 in 8 Overs Jadeja is into the attack and Kishan finds the fence after flaying his bat outside the off-stump, the ball races away to the extra-cover fence. Mumbai bring up their fifty with the southpaw cleverly running the ball down to the third man fence for another fence. Jadeja could have gone for his third boundary as width was offered in the last ball of the over but Kishan didn’t connect it. Nine from the over.
MI 43/2 in 7 Overs There was loop, change of pace and a hint of turn: Harbhajan Singh’s skills are intact as he gets off to a solid start against his old team. Just four runs from the over as Chennai keep the pressure on the batsman.
MI 39/2 in 6 Overs Suryakumar is on song! He plays yet another gorgeous shot through the off-side, caressing the ball off his back foot and the ball races away through the gap between cover and mid-off for a four. He adds two more to the total with a fortuitous couple from the fifth ball. The Mumbai batsman ends the powerplay with a thumping SIX, flicking effortlessly off his legs to deposit the ball over the deep square-leg boundary.
MI 26/2 in 5 Overs Suryakumar Yadav celebrates his Mumbai Indians debut with a crisp cover drive, thumping the ball over the off-side cover but once again, Chahar makes a solid comeback in the over, sticking diligently to an marginally outside off-stump line.
WICKET! End of Over 4: MI 22/2 in 4 Overs Watson gets the ball to go away from the batsman during the first two deliveries. Rohit, though, finally breaks the shackles by depositing the ball over the extra cover fence, SIX. But....Watson strikes as the Mumbai captain’s scratchy adventure comes to an end in a sorry fashion. He tries to clear the fence once again but the ball gets his top edge, the ball goes into orbit while Ambati Rayudu takes a fine catch, running forward from gully.
Rohit Sharma c Rayudu b Watson 15 (18)
MI 12/1 in 3 Overs Chahar continues to impress as Ishan Kishan decides that he is going to take the bowlers on. Chahar is hitting the deck hard and is not allowing the batters to free their arms. He finishes the over by pitching the ball up. Yet again, Rohit skies it but the ball doesn’t reach the boundary ropes. Another solid over for Chennai.
WICKET! MI 7/1 in 2.1 Overs Chahar continues and the ball crashes on to Lewis’s pads. Loud shout from the bowler, who loses his footing and the decision is given in Chennai’s favour. A review is taken and the decision stays. This is the first ever DRS decision in the history of the IPL. Hint of swing for the bowler there.
Evin Lewis lbw b Chahar 0 (2)
MI 7/0 in 2 overs Once again, Rohit steps out but can’t connect. However, he gets a couple with a lofted leg glance from a fuller delivery. He then gets a leading edge going for another flick and survives – the ball fell just short of first slip, where Harbhajan was stationed. Watson earns dot balls from the last two deliveries. Just two from the over.
Shane Watson to bowl the second over
MI 5/0 in 1 over Terrific start from Chahar, who beats Rohit’s outside edge three times in a row. He opened with a peach, teasing the Mumbai captain outside the off-stump. Rohit even tried stepping down the track, but missed. Mumbai and Rohit open their account with a classy cover drive, which beat the mid-off fielder. He followed that with a single and Lewis let the last delivery run to the keeper.
We are all set for the new season. No shortage of fans for CSK fans at the Wankhede stadium. Rohit Sharma to open. West Indies’s Evin Lewis is his partner. Deepak Chahar is handed the ball.
Mumbai Indians: Evin Lewis, Ishan Kishan(wk), Rohit Sharma(c), Hardik Pandya, Mayank Markande, Kieron Pollard, Suryakumar Yadav, Krunal Pandya, Mitchell McClenaghan, Mustafizur Rahman, Jasprit Bumrah
CSK: Shane Watson, Ambati Rayudu, Suresh Raina, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni (wk), Dwayne Bravo, Ravindra Jadeja, Harbhajan Singh, Deepak Chahar, Imran Tahir, Mark Wood
Mumbai lineup: Mayank Makande to make his IPL debut. Four bowlers and two genuine all-rounders in the Pandya brothers will be playing today, announces Rohit Sharma at the toss.
TOSS: MS Dhoni opts to bowl first. A huge roar greets the former Indian captain, who cites the moisture on the pitch for deciding to chase. Rohit Sharma said his side’s looking to forget their feats from last season.
It feels nice to be back in yellow, but we can’t be emotional, says Dhoni.
7:30 pm: Flat wicket to greet the players at the Wankhede stadium. Expect a game that will see close to 400 runs being scored.
7:06 pm: There might be a faint chance of the captains coming onto the field anytime now. Stay tuned.
Here’s another reason why Chennai are the favourites going into this contest:
Mumbai Indians are rarintg to retain the title, says Rohit Sharma
The opening ceremony has not impressed some folk, just saying:
6:45 pm: Still no trace of cricket....hang on, another 75 minutes to go. The ground’s filling up in the meanwhile
“We have prepared for the event and are looking to start on a good note,” says Rohit Sharma. He is welcomed with huge cheers by the home fans.
As expected, lots of cricket and minimal glitz and glamour in the opening ceremony..ahem. Who’s missing Ravi Shastri? Okay, scratch that, Rohit Sharma is walking on the field with the trophy.
6.20 pm: The opening ceremony is underway at the Wankhede.
Returning to the fray after serving out a two-year suspension, two-time winners Chennai Super Kings will take on reigning champions Mumbai Indians in the lung-opener of the Indian Premier League in Mumbai on Saturday.
The edge-of-the-seat clash, expected to be watched by a capacity crowd at the Wankhede Stadium, looks set to raise the curtains on the decade-old T20 League in grand style after a formal opening ceremony.
Mumbai, led by Rohit Sharma, appear to face an arduous task against the star-studded Chennai side, led by their charismatic skipper MS Dhoni who is back at the helm following the team’s two-year ban in 2016 and 2017 IPL seasons along with Rajasthan Royals.
The visitors would surely like to begin their campaign with a bang against their arch-rivals in the latter’s backyard.
To give an extra dimension to the contest will be the sight of veteran offie Harbhajan Singh turning out in CSK yellows against a side which he served with distinction for ten long years.
Mumbai will bank on their skipper Sharma, who has kept the number of his batting position under wraps for this game, but his role will be crucial.