The second phase of Indian Premier League kicked off with a thriller as Chennai Super Kings conjured an excellent turnaround to upstage Mumbai Indians.
Batting first, Chennai was jolted to a rude awakening with the Kiwi duo of Milne and Boult inflicting onslaught. However, a painstaking partnership between Ruturaj Gaikwad and Ravindra Jadeja helped Chennai arrest the downward spiral.
Gaikwad defied the Mumbai bowling line-up with a stellar knock of 88 from 58 balls while Jadeja’s 26 played the perfect complement.
A late storm from Dwayne Bravo helped Chennai to a decent 156 which looked to be a fighting total.
Mumbai couldn’t really break free from the manacles that had Chennai pegged back early in their knock. Deepak Chahar struck twice in quick succession while Shardul Thakur scalped the all-important wicket of Suryakumar Yadav.
Barring Saurabh Tiwary, Mumbai couldn’t excel at all as the Chennai bowlers swarmed over them convenietly.
Dwayne Bravo was the best of the lot with three wickets for 25 runs while Chahar’s early brace gave Mumbai the much-needee breakthrough from which they never really recovered.
In this corner of the story, we will take a glance at two things that MS Dhoni did right to haunt the reigning champions.
#1 Winning the toss and opting to bat
In the preceding edition of the tournament we have seen how batting second at Dubai comes like a curse for the batters with the pitches devolving like anything. Dhoni was well aware of the fact that an early storm may be disruptive but he still had to believe in his team and it was ultimately this belief that saw them through with Ruturaj playing an impeccable knock. Bravo pulled off a fiery knock towards the end while Jadeja played the perfect anchor. Mumbai’s woes started from the very onset of their innings and they never really recuperated from the unravelling that was dealt to them by Deepak Chahar.
#2 Perfect use of Dwayne Bravo
They say that the experimenting game that T20 is, one good player can completely change the complexion of the game. Dhoni implied this fact with picture-perfect precision as he made the most of the West Indian all-rounder, Dwayne Bravo. He came out to bat exactly where he was needed and conjured a destructive storm that helped Chennai reach 156. Also, a perfect application of the medium pacer in bowling allowed Chennai to prise out three crucial wickets that completely rattled the spine of the defending champions. With figures of 3 for 25, Bravo emerged as the pick of the pack, cementing Chennai’s position in the top half of the table.