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Friday, June 18, 2021

Youth has oldies’ number: Delhi Capitals thrash Chennai Super Kings

MS Dhoni walks in too late again after Prithvi Shaw shows his class.

Written by Tushar Bhaduri |
Updated: September 26, 2020 3:51:43 pm
MS Dhoni helps Prithvi Shaw during the clash between Delhi Capitals and Chennai Super Kings in IPL 2020. (File)

These are still early days in the tournament, but it seems age is finally catching up with Dad’s Army. Winning and losing is one thing, but there seems to be a diffidence in Chennai Super Kings’ approach to the game this season so far. While chasing not such a big target of 176 on Friday, Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s men never got in the contest. Every batsman struggled to get close to the requirement, with Murali Vijay struggling big time at the top. The object of the exercise seemed once again to salvage the net run rate much before the end. They didn’t manage that either, going down by 44 runs as Delhi Capitals soared to the top of the points table.

Dhoni walks in too late

Dhoni’s batting position seemed to have become a national obsession, but it’s not influencing the man himself. As in the previous match, Ruturaj Gaikwad and Kedar Jadhav came before him. When the skipper finally made it to the middle at No. 6, there were only 26 balls left with 76 needed off them. Continuously greeted with short balls didn’t help his cause either and Dhoni seemed a shadow of his best self.
Earlier in their innings, Axar Patel and Amit Mishra kept the opposition on a tight leash, and when they were through with their spells – conceding just 41 runs in eight overs – the match had already gone too far from CSK’s grasp.

Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje were too big a challenge for them. The Super Kings will try to get their house in order before their next game after a week-long break.

Shaw shows his class

Less than two years ago, Prithvi Shaw burst onto the big stage with a debut Test century. But that seems an age ago now. The youngster has gone through a lot in the intervening period, while still in his teens, including a serious injury and a ban for consuming a banned substance. His playing style has prompted a few comparisons with another short-statured batsman from Mumbai. Shaw gets into trouble from time to time on the pull shot – did so on Friday as well – but in between those played some delightful shots, especially on the off-side.

Most teams try to maximise runs in the Powerplay, but Delhi Capitals managed just 36 there. Shaw and opening partner Shikhar Dhawan were guilty of looking for only boundaries, and not singles. But once the spinners came after the fielding restrictions were off, the next four overs went for 52 as the openers put on 94 in less than 11 overs.

Some of the inside-out lofted shots by Shaw really caught the eye. Ravindra Jadeja and Piyush Chawla were not allowed to settle, and even though the latter made a comeback with two wickets, the left-arm spinner’s four overs went for 44. This hurt Dhoni’s game plan as he relies on his spinners to control the game in the middle overs.

But as it happened in their first match, set batsmen getting out in quick succession hurt their progress, If a team loses just three wickets in 20 overs, it is expected to get close to 200 or above it. But Rishabh Pant and Shreyas Iyer struggled to hit Sam Curran off the square in the 19th over.

Pant showed a different dynamic to his game, seemingly taking a bit more responsibility to bat deep and not go for the big shot too early in his innings. At the end of their innings, Delhi Capitals seemed to be 10-15 runs short, but their disciplined bowling and the cautious approach by CSK batsmen ensured that 175 was more than enough on the day.

Brief Scores: Delhi Capitals 175/3 (Prithvi Shaw 64, Rishabh Pant 37; Piyush Chawla 2/33) bt Chennai Super Kings 131/7 (Faf du Plessis 43; Kagiso Rabada 3/26)

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