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Turning point: Dhoni to the fore!

By HARISH KOTIAN
Last updated on: May 02, 2019 19:19 IST
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Mahendra Singh Dhoni

IMAGE: Mahendra Singh Dhoni hits out. Photograph: BCCI

Back in the team after missing the last match, Mahendra Singh Dhoni showed why he is the MOST important part of the Chennai Super Kings set-up.

Fever ruled M S out of the game against Mumbai Indians, CSK were outplayed and suffered a 46 run defeat.

Despite not feeling fully fit, Dhoni was back to lead CSK in an important game against the Delhi Capitals, a match between the top two teams in IPL-12.

 

Delhi Captain Shreyas Iyer won the toss and elected to bowl expecting dew to play a part, which was immediately refuted by Dhoni, who felt that dew might not come in as expected, and it proved to be correct at the end.

CSK were off to a horror start as Shane Watson perished early for a duck with just 7 runs coming from the first four overs.

Suresh Raina rallied CSK in the middle overs with a quickfire 59 from 37 balls, but the real boost came from Captain Dhoni's willow at the end.

He came to bat in the 14th over when CSK were going at just over 6 per over and looked set to finish well below 150 before Dhoni took centrestage.

Raina hit spinner Jagadeesha Suchith for two fours and a six to complete his half-century before he perished in the same over, leaving the onus on Dhoni to finish off things.

Ravindra Jadeja made a good contribution with a quickfire 25 from 10 balls while Dhoni cut loose. He pulled a slower ball from Chris Morris for a four through midwicket and then hit Trent Boult for another boundary in the next over.

Morris bowled a high full toss which was ruled a no-ball and Dhoni, despite taking evasive action, swatted it over fine leg for a six.

He was severe on Boult in the final over, hitting the pacer straight down the ground for a four before he ended the innings in grand style. Boult preferred to go short and Dhoni was able to despatch the last two deliveries for a six powering CSK to 179/4, giving them the momentum going into the break.

The CSK captain slammed 44 from just 22 balls, helping the hosts amass 77 from the last 5 overs.

Dhoni then showed his brilliance with the gloves as he came up with two super quick stumpings off Jadeja in the space of three deliveries.

Morris was beaten by Jadeja, who got the ball to turn sharply as Dhoni whipped off the bails in a flash.

Then, he dismissed his opposite number in the same fashion.

Delhi Capitals were shot out for a lowly 99 in 16.2 overs to lose by 90 runs and surrender the top spot to the Chennai Super Kings.

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HARISH KOTIAN / Rediff.com
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