He might be sporting that salt pepper beard and playing with slower reflexes, but as a finisher and a match-winner, there is absolutely no replacement for MS Dhoni.
The greatest finisher in the history of the game, made his skills on display, as he went for the full monty in the last two overs of Pune’s innings, propelling his side to a put up more than a defendable total of 162, after the side initially struggled.
But the man of the evening was the 17-year old spinner, Washington Sundar, who single-handedly derailed Mumbai Indians’ run chase with three crucial wickets. Dismissing three quality batsmen in the form of Rohit Sharma, Ambati Rayudu and Kieron Pollard, Sundar all, but ended the chase with his superb bowling performance.
Post the win, skipper Steven Smith lauded MS Dhoni for his finish.
“Yeah, it’s been good this year,” said Smith. “Three times we have beaten them this year. Big day and big players stand up. MS Dhoni was magnificent, Rahane was good at the start. We went with a batter light, so had to be bit conservative, 160 was a good total. Slower wicket, so was difficult to time the ball. Dhoni and Manoj did well.”
“There was dew but the wicket was still slow. Proud of his efforts,” said Smith about the young Sundar. Good to have a bit of a break. Hopefully, we can be the better team in the final.”
Sundar was named as the Man of the Match and the teenager finally had his moment to cherish.
“I think it’s very heartening for me to do well against a big team on a good stage, in front of a packed crowd. Owe this to my mom and dad. I think keeping things simple makes me do things like this. Mahi bhai has been supportive. Right now, I am not looking to be experimental. I am just looking to go there and back myself. I think we could lift the trophy in the finals as well,” said Sundar.