Captain Dhoni Blasts 32 off 15 Balls
The Chennai Super Kings are back, and how! After facing defeat in their season opener, they rebounded with a massive 93-run win over the Delhi Daredevils. With contributions from all across their batting line-up and wickets claimed by all their bowlers, CSK delivered a clinical win after posting 178 for seven in 20 overs.
Earlier, upon winning the toss, MS Dhoni did not hesitate to take first strike. However, unlike the previous match, the CSK openers were not able to give their team a big start as Brendon McCullum (9) got out in the third over off the bowling of Jaydev Unadkat. Dwayne Smith (29) and Suresh Raina then crafted a 44-run stand, until the former departed in the 11th over. Raina (56), however, continued to build a foundation that helped incoming CSK batters to pile on a big score. The southpaw even brought up his half-century in the process, before he returned to the dugout with the score on 108 for three in the 15th over.
Faf du Plessis (24) and Dhoni (32) then played valuable cameos and made sure the scorecard kept reflecting a run-rate of around eight-an-over. However, Shami got rid of du Plessis just when his stand with his skipper was taking shape. And shortly afterwards, Unadkat dealt a massive double-blow by claiming Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja in a space of three deliveries. CSK had posted 162 for six in 19 overs at the fall of Jadeja’s wicket.
They needed a big last over to top off an innings that was laced with several valuable contributions. And that is exactly what they got from Mithun Manhas (13), whose five-ball innings saw him strike two boundaries and take his team’s total past the 175-run mark. R Ashwin (1) was the one casualty in the final over; he was run-out by Mohammed Shami. CSK played out their quota of 20 overs at 178 for seven.
For DD, Unadkat was the pick of the bowlers. The pacer picked up three wickets for 32 runs in his four overs.
Facing a big target, DD began their chase with a big jolt up front. They lost Mayank Agarwal (2) in the second over itself. He perished off the bowling of Ishwar Pandey, who was on song during the game. The situation did not get any better for the Daredevils as Murali Vijay (11) soon departed, dismissed by Mohit Sharma. Pandey then returned to get rid of Manoj Tiwary (0), leaving DD on 17 for three and in all sorts of trouble.
In came JP Duminy (15), who has been a standout performer for DD so far this season. However, the South African failed to add substance to a fast-faltering run-chase and perished in the ninth over; he was trapped leg-before by Dwayne Smith. Even Ross Taylor (6) had a forgettable day at the office and fell prey to Ben Hilfenhaus. Dinesh Karthik (21), who was only one of two Daredevils batters to go past the 20-run mark, was the next to depart; Ashwin bowled him out with the score on 74 for six. Jadeja then broke Jimmy Neesham’s (22) resistance a short while later. Ashwin then picked up Shami’s (1) wicket, before Jadeja finished off the DD innings with Shahbaz Nadeem’s (3) scalp. Nathan Coulter-Nile did not bat as he was absent hurt.
The Daredevils had a forgettable outing as they folded for 84 in 15.4 overs, thereby handing CSK a massive 93-run win. For CSK, Pandey, Jadeja and Ashwin took two wickets each.