'IPL teams not adapted to South African pitches yet'
The four Indian Premier League teams are finding it tough to adapt to the bouncy South African pitches and that is primarily responsible for their indifferent performances in the ongoing Champions League Twenty20, Chennai Super Kings all-rounder Faf du Plessis said.
While reigning IPL champions Kolkata Knight Riders, Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians are yet to win a match in the tournament, the Delhi Daredevils have won their opening fixture against KKR.
"You've got to get used to the conditions quickly and most IPL teams are starting off slowly because these are very different conditions for them," Du Plessis said after CSK lost by six wickets to the Highveld Lions on Tuesday to slump to their second consecutive defeat in the tournament.
"And the teams who are used to these conditions -- the Australian and South African teams -- are doing well," he observed.
Du Plessis feels the Mahendra Singh Dhoni-led Chennai outfit was "little unlucky" not to have defended the challenging score of 158 for six yesterday."I think they bowled really well and we were a little unlucky. Gulam Bodi got away with a few lucky edges for fours and he could've been out any of these times. I thought our pacers bowled very well up front," the South African told clt20.com.
Image: Faf du Plessis
Photographs: Duif du Toit/Gallo Images/Getty Images
'After the sixth over of the second innings, it was perfect to bat on'
"It's just that the Lions got the best of the conditions. The wicket was a bit slow when they were bowling and as you saw their spinner (Aaron) Phangiso got a couple of them to turn.
"Sitting on the sidelines, I thought according to my knowledge of the conditions, as it gets colder at night, the wicket will get a little quicker and that's nice for batting. I thought after the sixth over of the second innings, it was perfect to bat on," Du Plessis said.
In a tight corner after the two loses, Chennai will now have to win both their remaining Group B games against Mumbai Indians and Yorkshire to remain in the hunt for a place in the semi-finals.
And Du Plessis is hoping for highly improved performances in the remaining two matches to stand in with any chance of playing against his home side --Titans -- in the knock-out stage of the tournament.
"The only way I can play them, (Titans) is if we meet in the semis, and for that to happen now we'll need to start playing some really good cricket to get our net run-rate up," he said.
"If it happens, it would be nice to play against them. They've bowled to me 1000 balls in the nets, so even they know where I like to score. We'll get there, we'll get there."
Image: Highveld Lions players celebrate after defeating Chennai Super Kings on Tuesday
Photographs: Carl Fourie/Gallo Images/Getty Images