RCB captain’s expertly paced 90 n.o. consigns Dhoni’s men to their fifth defeat
After seven matches, Chennai Super Kings’ mid-term report card will just read ‘lack of intent’. The side produced yet another dull display on Saturday, going down to Royal Challengers Bangalore by 37 runs at the Dubai International Stadium.
Chasing 170 for victory, CSK’s batting woes played out in a familiar manner. The openers failed to give a good start and the middle-order showed no urgency, as last edition’s runner-up crawled to its fifth defeat of the season.
Shifting gears seamlessly
Earlier, Virat Kohli slammed an unbeaten 90 off just 52 balls (4×4, 4×6) in an innings where he seamlessly shifted gears between caution and aggression.
At the end of the 15th over, both teams were in a similar situation (RCB: 95/4; CSK: 96/3), but CSK did not have someone to produce a knock like Kohli’s. The Indian skipper cut loose in the last five overs to power RCB to 169, which proved more than enough.
On the field, Kohli was brilliant with his calls, using the quicks to unsettle the openers before Washington Sundar removed Faf du Plessis and Shane Watson cheaply.
Ambati Rayudu (42) and debutant N. Jagadeesan (33) weren’t able to accelerate, and the RCB bowlers used the scoreboard pressure to close out the match without much trouble.
Electing to bat, RCB had a sedate start, with Aaron Finch falling early and Devdutt Padikkal not at his fluent best. Padikkal (33) and Kohli steadied things before Shardul Thakur removed the former and AB de Villiers in the 11th over to reduce RCB to 67 for three.
It was then that Kohli, who had reached his 50 off 39 balls, turned it on.
In the 18th over, he hit Sam Curran for two sixes, the second one being the shot of the day — an audacious flick over square-leg.
Devdutt Padikkal c du Plessis b Shardul 33 (34b, 2×4, 1×6), Aaron Finch b Deepak Chahar 2 (9b), Virat Kohli (not out) 90 (52b, 4×4, 4×6), A.B. de Villiers c Dhoni b Shardul 0 (2b), Washington Sundar c Dhoni b Sam Curran 10 (10b, 1×6), Shivam Dube (not out) 22 (14b, 2×4, 1×6); Extras (lb-1, w-10, nb-1): 12; Total (for four wkts. in 20 overs): 169.
Fall of wickets
1-13 (Finch, 2.5 overs), 2-66 (Padikkal,Ñ10.2), 3-67 (de Villiers,10.5), 4-93 (Washington,14.3).
Super Kings bowling
Deepak Chahar 3-0-10-1, Sam Curran 4-0-48-1, Shardul 4-0-40-2, Bravo 3-0-29-0, Karn 4-0-34-0, Jadeja 2-0-7-0.
Chennai Super Kings
Shane Watson b Washington 14 (18b, 3×4), Faf du Plessis c Morris b Washington 8 (10b), Ambati Rayudu b Udana 42 (40b, 4×4), N. Jagadeesan run out 33 (28b, 4×4), M.S. Dhoni c Gurkeerat b Chahal 10 (6b, 1×6), Sam Curran c de Villiers b Morris 0 (1b), Ravindra Jadeja c Gurkeerat b Morris 7 (6b, 1×4), Dwayne Bravo c Padikkal b Morris 7 (5b), Deepak Chahar (not out) 5 (5b), Shardul Thakur (not out) 1 (1b); Extras (w-5): 5; Total (for eight wkts. in 20 overs): 132.
Fall of wickets
1-19 (du Plessis, 3.6 overs), 2-25 (Watson, 5.4), 3-89 (Jagadeesan, 14.2), 4-106 (Dhoni, 15.6), 5-107 (Curran,16.2), 6-113 (Rayudu, 17.3), 7-122 (Bravo, 18.4), 8-126 (Jadeja, 18.6).
Morris 4-0-19-3, Saini 4-0-18-0, Udana 4-0-30-1, Washington 3-0-16-2, Chahal 4-0-35-1, Dube 1-0-14-0.
Royal Challengers Bangalore won by 37 runs.