More than 400 days after his last competitive match, MS Dhoni took to the field for Chennai Super Kings on Saturday in the Indian Premier League season-opener and registered his 100th win as captain in the tournament.
Ambati Rayudu and Faf du Plessis hit half-centuries while Sam Curran played a crucial cameo as CSK chased down 163 in the last over of second innings. Rayudu (71 off 48) and du Plessis (58 not-out off 44) came together to put on a brilliant 115-run partnership for the third wicket
Dhoni’s astute captaincy was backed up by some brilliant bowling at the back end as CSK restricted MI to 162/9 in Abu Dhabi.
CSK’s new recruits – leg-spinner Piyush Chawla (1/21 in 4 overs) and left-arm seamer Sam Curran (1/28 in 4 overs) – made a fantastic first impression while Lungi Ngidi (3/38 in 4 overs) and Deepak Chahar (2/32 in 4 overs) came back brilliantly at the death overs.
For Mumbai Indians, Quinton de Kock (33 off 20 balls, 5x4) and Saurabh Tiwary (42 off 31 balls, 3x4, 1x6) played well, but couldn’t convert their starts as the defending champions got only 76 runs in their back-10.
This result marked the eighth consecutive defeat for Mumbai Indians in their opening match of an IPL season.
Here’s how Twitter reacted to the highly-awaited match between arch-rivals: