Chennai Super Kings (CSK) opening batsman Ruturaj Gaikwad smashed a brilliant match-winning fifty on the return of IPL 2021. His knock helped CSK defeat Mumbai Indians (MI) by 20 runs.
Gaikwad started off on a scratchy note, moving to 19 off 24 at one stage. He picked up the pace once Quinton de Kock dropped him and made sure the ‘keeper would regret it. At the post-match presentation ceremony, he credited the Sri Lankan tour earlier this year for his performance.
“[It] was one of my top innings. With the pressure of early wickets and with the seniors [back] in the dressing room, I just had to grind and get the team to 130, 140, and then 150.”
“The SL tour and the preparation coming here did help too. Initially, the ball was seaming and swinging so I had to take my chance against the spinners. Jaddu just came in and I had to take my chance and it came off well,” the Man of the Match said.
CSK move to the top of the table on the back of Ruturaj Gaikwad and combined bowling effort
CSK showed early signs of nervousness when they started out to bat in the first innings. The ghosts of UAE, where they had their worst IPL performance, came back to haunt them big time.
They were jittery in the powerplay, losing four wickets with the score on 24. Gaikwad played a sensible knock and rebuilt the innings with Ravindra Jadeja. Few quick runs at the fag end meant the team managed to get to a par total of 156/6.
MI followed CSK’s template and lost too many wickets in the powerplay. Deepak Chahar did the damage, snapping up De Kock and Anmolpreet Singh. Wickets continued to fall, with only Saurabh Tiwari putting up a fighting fifty.
The score proved to be too big in the end for MI, who are notorious for being slow starters. They remain in the fourth position despite the loss, but CSK moved back over Delhi Capitals to the top of the table.