Faf du Plessis lavished praise on MS Dhoni after the latter slammed a 22-ball fifty against Delhi Daredevils as Chennai Super Kings won the game by 13 runs to get back to winning ways.
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The Super Kings skipper is batting like a man on mission in the ongoing season. He has rolled back the clocks with his incredible batting which has also made his detractors remain quiet at least for the time being. On Monday ( April 29), the 36-year old scored his third fifty of the season. After Shane Watson’s 78-run knock laid the platform for a big total, Dhoni registered his second fastest IPL half-century to guide Super Kings to a daunting 211 for 4. He remained unbeaten on 55 off just 22 balls with the help of 2 fours and 5 sixes.
Dhoni looked in his elements right from the time he came out to bat. He hit as many as three sixes in the first ten balls he faced. The World Cup-winning skipper first took on Mishra in the 17th over and hit two sixes and one four. After he was dropped in the 19th over, he ended Avesh Khan’s spell with a six. Trent Boult too failed to find a solution as Dhoni carted him for 13 in the last over to propel the team past 200.
The score turned out to be more than enough in the end as Daredevils were restricted to 198 for 5 despite fifties from Rishabh Pant and Vijay Shankar.
Speaking after the game, du Plessis hailed Dhoni, saying it is extremely tough for the bowlers to contain him at the moment.
“He is in really good form at the moment and it’s extremely tough to bowl to him when he is form like that because he has got such a big arch and if you want to bowl wide he can still hit you to leg side,” said du Plessis.
“So he has got lot of options so it make life difficult for bowler to plan and bowl to him and even a captain where they want to put the field because he can hit any ball to wherever he wants to,” he added.
The South Africa star further praised Ambatti Rayudu for his flexibility in the batting order. Rayudu, who is now the Orange Cap holder with 370 runs from eight matches, had opened the innings in the previous games but batted at number four against Delhi. However, the change in batting order did not affect his batting. The right-hander scored 41 off 24 to help his side finish strongly.
“The flexibility that Rayudu has had has really impressed me. I’ve really enjoyed him bat this IPL. The ability to come in and score boundaries from the first ball is a very difficult skill, not a lot of people can do that,” he said.
“With Suresh (Raina) at three and him (Rayudu) at four and if we get off to a solid start at the top, two then can just come in and player their natural game which is very dangerous for the opposition. So, We are fortunate that we have got lot of options in our batting unit,” he added.