- MS Dhoni’s 34 balls 70 helped chase down RCB’s target of 206
- CSK coach Stephen Fleming rates one of Dhoni’s sixes among the top 3 shots he has ever seen
- CSK currently sit at the top of the points table with 10 points, while KXIP are 6th with 4 points
MS Dhoni’s 34 balls 70 against Royal Challengers Bangalore secured an emphatic win for the Chennai Super Kings last night at the M.Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru. After losing 4 wickets for just 74 runs, MS Dhoni joined Ambati Rayudu in the middle and the two stitched a 101 run stand to help CSK get over the line and secure what was at one point looking a very unlikely win. Prior to Dhoni’s heroics, AB de Villiers played a brilliant knock in the 1st innings scoring 68 runs which included 2 fours and 8 sixes to help RCB post a massive total of 205 in their 20 overs. Although it was Dhoni’s brilliant finishing which helped CSK chase this big target, we must not forget the contribution made by Rayudu at the top. The 32-year-old is now the leading run-scorer in IPL 2018 with 283 runs at an average of 47.17.
CSK coach Stephen Fleming left gobsmacked after Dhoni heroics
Speaking after the match, CSK coach Stephen Fleming was full of praise for captain MS Dhoni and his calmness during the final overs. The former Kiwi international said, “It was a Dhoni special and an amazing win. We have some players who are experiencing this for the first time in our side; they were absolutely gobsmacked the way he finished this game… That one shot over point towards the end of the innings was one of the top three shots I have ever seen. I’ve seen a few in this game itself, with AB de Villiers, and in the context of the game, taking the score down to 21 was just ice-cool.”
The six that Fleming was referring to was hit on the penultimate ball of Mohammed Siraj’s 19th over as it brought down the target to 21 runs in 7 balls. The ease with which Dhoni took Siraj on that ball definitely rattled the bowler as he then bowled 3 consecutive wides to further ease the pressure on Dwayne Bravo who was going to facing the first ball of the last over. Speaking about that 19th over, Fleming said,”His [Dhoni’s] ability to let balls go for wide and his presence of mind never ceases to amaze. We haven’t seen it as much, the gaps between [such] innings have been bigger, but in this IPL his batting has been excellent, and the innings today was one of the best ones I’ve ever seen.”
Royal Challengers Bangalore in trouble after yet another defeat
Thanks to the win, Chennai Super Kings moved to the top of the points table, thanks to a better net run-rate but Kings XI Punjab will have a chance of taking that spot away from Dhoni’s men if they can manage to secure a win against Sunrisers Hyderabad tonight at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad. The match between CSK and RCB saw over 410 runs being scored and a total of 33 sixes being hit, the most in a single IPL match. With 2 wins from their first 6 games, Royal Challengers Bangalore sit on 6th place in the points table but are in real danger of missing out on the playoffs if they don’t manage to string together a few victories starting from 29th April when they take on Kolkata Knight Riders, who have already beaten them once in this season.
In his innings of 70 MS Dhoni smashed a mind-boggling 7 sixes and just 1 four. Needing 5 of 3 balls and with Corey Anderson very obviously looking to bowl wide yorkers to the former Indian captain, Dhoni anticipated RCB’s plan, took a couple of steps to the offside, got the ball in his arc, and launched it for the winnings six, similar to his historic shot against Sri Lanka in the 2011 World Cup Final.
WATCH: I thought de Villiers had won the game for RCB – Stephen Flemin