Cometh the hour cometh the man! Mahendra Singh Dhoni – the best finisher this game has ever seen. Chennai Super Kings needed 24 runs off 11 balls when MS Dhoni arrived at the crease. Delhi Capitals were smelling blood after sending the in-form opener Ruturaj Gaikwad, however, his stunning knock of 18 runs off 6-ball to take his team straight into the final.
Earlier, Delhi Capitals managed to post a challenging total of 172 runs on the back of some stunning half-centuries from Prithvi Shaw (60 off 34) and Rishabh Pant (51 off 35) but Ruturaj Gaikwad (70 off 50) and Robin Uthappa (63 off 44) trumped those efforts made by the Delhi Capitals’ players before MS Dhoni snatched the game away with his stunning cameo.
However, the victory wasn’t a cake-walk for the Super Kings, as they got off to the worst possible start as they lost their in-form opener Faf du Plessis in the first over itself off Anrich Nortje’s delivery. But this was the only good thing that happened to DC for the next 13-odd overs. Robin Uthappa, who was playing his third game of the season, broke havoc inside the DC’s camp as he played some stunning shots to complete his half-century and help his team chase down the competitive target.
Robin timed his shots wonderfully and played some extraordinary shots. His presence in the middle helped Ruturaj Gaikwad to settle down at the other end together. Gaikwad scored 70 runs off 50 balls, smashing 5 fours and 2 sixes. DC was desperately looking for a wicket and finally, they broke the 110-run excellent partnership off Tom Curran’s delivery.
Everyone was expecting Ravindra Jadeja, however, MS Dhoni decided to take matters into his own hands with 24 needed off 13 balls. Dhoni, the master of the ‘finishing’ art did it again and took his team home.
Later, after the match, CSK’s head coach Stephen Fleming talked about Dhoni batting ahead of Ravindra Jadeja. He also revealed the reason why he didn’t hold MS Dhoni back. He revealed how MS Dhoni looked confident when he said he will go first. He said:
“There was a lot of chat. We spoke more in those 20 overs than we have for a long time. There was a lot of technical discussion and maneuvering to try and work out how this was going to unfold. When the captain got looked in his eyes, he said ‘I’ll go’; it’s been well-documented the times that he has done that. Today was one of those. I ain’t holding him back, and we saw the result of that,”
“It was emotionally great for us. We wish him every time he goes out. We know the pressure he has and the expectation there is on him. Again, he came up trumps for us. It was emotional in many ways, and was very important. And the captain had the opportunity to do that for us,”