MS Dhoni’s valiant battle ended in vain as Chennai Super Kings suffered a one-run defeat to Royal Challengers Bangalore in their Indian Premier League (IPL) 2019 clash at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium.
Chasing 162 in good batting conditions, Dhoni took on the responsibility of leading Chennai Super Kings’ fightback and going big in the final overs. Even for Dhoni, it proved to be a daunting task as CSK fell short of the target by 1 run. Dhoni remained unbeaten on 84 as CSK managed 160 for 8 in 20 overs.
Royal Challengers Bangalore kept their playoff hopes alive by winning another must-win encounter, this time against the three-time champions. Virat Kohli’s men now have six points from 10 matches but are rooted to the bottom of IPL 2019 points table.
Dhoni smashes 24 in the last over
Dhoni showed glimpses of his vintage self as he led Chennai Super Kings’ fightback after they were left reeling on 32 for 4 at the end of the powerplay.
Dhoni got to his 23rd IPL fifty in 41 balls and followed a familiar script as he took the game until the final over. With 26 needed off the last over, Dhoni hit Umesh Yadav for 24 runs, including three sixes and a boundary. It included a 111-meter monster that went out of the ground.
However, with two runs needed off the last ball, Dhoni missed a length ball from Umesh. He tried to pinch a single in a bid to force a Super Over but Parthiv Patel came up with a smart effort, running out Shardul Thakur who was running towards the striker’s end.
Royal Challengers (@RCBTweets) April 21, 2019
Meanwhile, it seems Dale Steyn is turning out to be the man that Royal Challengers Bangalore had missed over the years as the South Africa speedster jolted Chennai Super Kings chase of 162 as early as in his first over.
Steyn, who was steaming in with a lot of aggression, got the big breakthrough of Shane Watson for 5 with a brilliant outswinger. He then came up with an unplayable yorker to send Suresh Raina walking back on a golden duck in the following delivery to pick up two in two in his first over.
Faf du Plessis, who had watched the carnage from the other end in the first over, struggled to get going as the like of Steyn, Navdeep Saini and Umesh Yadav kept the pressure on the Chennai Super Kings’ batsmen.
Du Plessis enjoyed a bit of luck in the fourth over as a late outswinger from Umesh Yadav kissed the stumps but the bails didn’t fall off. However, Umesh got his man in the final ball of the over when du Plessis perished while trying to clear the mid-wicket boundary.
Kedar Jadhav soon followed the CSK top-order batsmen back to the hut and CSK were reeling at 32 for 4 after the end of the powerplay.
MS Dhoni with able support from Ambati Rayudu at the other end helped Chennai Super Kings rebuild after the early blows. Both the batsmen kept the scoreboard moving and took risks at times and stitched a 55-run stand.
Just when Rayudu was threatening to switch gears, Yuzvendra Chahal, RCB’s premier spinner, snared the Hyderabad batsmen to pull things back for the home side.
Parthiv Patel’s half-century highlight of RCB’s innings
Earlier, in the day, Chennai Super Kings managed to restrict Royal Challengers Bangalore to 161 for 7 in 20 overs a day after Virat Kohli’s men posted a mammoth 213 against Kolkata Knight Riders at the Eden Gardens.
RCB’s innings got off to the worst possible start as Deepak Chahar removed Virat Kohli for 9 as early as the third over. MS Dhoni had two slips for his RCB counterpart and the move worked as Kohli was forced into playing through the covers. An outswinger saw the back of Kohli.
However, AB de Villiers came up with some firepowers to pump the M Chinnaswamy Stadium crowd up. Just when de Villiers was looking set to take the match away from Chennai Super KIngs, Ravindra Jadeja got the big wicket.
Did RCB hold back Moeen Ali for a bit too long?
Royal Challengers Bangalore, despite losing Kohli and de Villiers, were keeping the scorers busy but the home team missed a trick by not sending Moeen Ali up at No.4. Notably, Ali had smashed 66 from 28 balls against Kolkata at Eden Gardens on Friday.
Akshdeep Nath, who walked in at No. 4, stitched a handy stand with Parthiv Patel, who came up with a well-paced half-century (53 from 37 balls). However, RCB weren’t able to get boundaries as consistently as they would have hoped for.
Moeen Ali played at No. 6 for RCB on Sunday and smashed a quickfire 26 (14 balls) but RCB managed just 35 runs in their last 21 balls. Marcus Stoinis, who walked in ahead of Ali, struggled to get going and contributed just 14 from 13 balls.
Deepak Chahar and Ravindra Jadeja were the picks of Chennai Super Kings’ bowling attacks as the duo picked up four wickets between them, conceding just 54 runs. Comeback man Dwayne Bravo, who recovered from a hamstring injury, picked up two as well while conceding 34.