MS Dhoni, the Chennai Super Kings skipper, heaped high praises on his players for turning around their last season’s dampness to clinching the top-of-the-table spot this season following their 6-wicket win over the Royal Challengers Bangalore at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Friday.
MS Dhoni elected to bowl first, keeping in mind the dew factor. CSK were set a target of 157, which they chased down with 11 balls to spare.
The CSK captain talked about the brilliant comeback his bowlers made after RCB’s 111-run opening stand.
“We were worried about the dew and we saw that last season. They got off to a great start and after the eighth or ninth over, the pitch slowed down a bit. Jadeja’s spell was very crucial especially with the way Padikkal was batting from one end,” MS Dhoni said at the post-match conference.
“I told Moeen that he would bowl from one end during drinks, but then I changed my mind. I decided Bravo should bowl because the more you delayed him, the more difficult it was given that he’d have to bowl four straight overs in these difficult conditions.”
Last year, the Super Kings missed the playoff spot for the first time. They have turned around their fortunes and now are one victory away from fixing their berth for the playoffs. He credited his side for adapting to the conditions this time in the UAE.
“Our players have worked hard and understood their roles and responsibilities. All three grounds here are different. This one is the slowest of the lot,” he said.
On switching the batting position of Suresh Raina and Ambati Rayudu, MS Dhoni explained that he wanted to keep the left-right combination in the middle-order.
“I felt the left-right combination here was important with the bat. We bat deep with a lot of lefties and all of them are good to bat at any position, which is why we pushed Raina and Rayudu down.”
Bravo is fit and executing them well: MS Dhoni
Dwayne Bravo was named the Man of the Match for his brilliant figures of 3/24. He ceased RCB’s momentum in the second half of their innings. MS Dhoni is happy to his ‘brother’ perform so well.
“Bravo is fit and executing them well. I call him my brother and we always have fights over whether he should bowl the slower ball. But now everyone knows that he has the slower ball, so I told him to bowl six different balls in an over,” the CSK captain concluded.
Next, CSK travel to Abu Dhabi where they will take on Eoin Morgan’s Kolkata Knight Riders on Sunday afternoon.