Ruturaj Gaikwad | Sportzwiki

Ruturaj Gaikwad

Harbhajan Singh. (Twitter/KKRiders)
Harbhajan Singh. (Twitter/KKRiders)
//

Harbhajan Singh Says It’s Tough To Compete Against CSK

Harbhajan Singh, who is currently plying his trade for the Kolkata Knight Riders, explained why is difficult to battle against MS Dhoni’s CSK team.

Indian cricketer Harbhajan Singh who played earlier for CSK heaped praise on Chennai Super Kings captain MS Dhoni, saying that it is always a challenge to face his team and that his focus will be on winning the IPL 2021 title.

Harbhajan Singh and MS Dhoni
Harbhajan Singh and MS Dhoni. Credits: Twitter

Harbhajan Singh: It Is Always A Challenge To Play Against CSK For They Often Field An Experienced Team, So KKR Have To Play Like Champions

Harbhajan Singh explained why is difficult to battle against MS Dhoni’s team CSK for they have several experienced campaigners in their squad like Imran Tahir, Faf du Plessis, Dwayne Bravo, Moeen Ali, Ravindra Jadeja, and Suresh Raina to mention a few.

“It is always a challenge to face MS Dhoni’s team because he often has a very good squad by his side. As CSK often takes the field with a number of experienced players, it is always a closely fought battle against them. If KKR want to beat the likes of CSK and MI, then we will have to play like champions,” Harbhajan Singh quipped while speaking on the SportTak YouTube channel.

MS Dhoni (BCCI/IPL)
MS Dhoni (BCCI/IPL)

MS Dhoni, following the culmination of the ongoing IPL season, will stay back with Team India for the T20 World Cup as he will serve his time there as the mentor. Harbhajan Singh believes that CSK skipper MS Dhoni will not be in his mentor role yet and would want to finish his career on a high should he decides to hang up his boots at the end of this season.

“I do not feel that MS Dhoni will be in his mentor role at the moment. He is currently in the captain’s role and I believe his complete focus will be on winning the championship for his team. It is uncertain if he will play next season, hence he will want to finish on a high note.”

KKR lost the 1st match between the two teams in the 1st half of IPL 2021 in India as openers Ruturaj Gaikwad scored 64 and Faf du Plessis scored an unbeaten 95 to propel CSK to 220/3. KKR fought valiantly but couldn’t quite recover from the start as they were 31/5 at one stage. Despite Dinesh Karthik‘s 40, Andre Russell’s 54, and Pat Cummins’ unbeaten 66, KKR could score 202 and lost by 18 runs.

Harbhajan Singh played 3 IPL games for his new franchise KKR but went wicketless. Meanwhile, MS Dhoni’s CSK got off to an excellent start in the second phase-the UAE leg of IPL 14.

CSK And KKR Register Wins In The First 2 Games Since IPL 2021 Resumption At UAE

Chennai Super Kings defeated defending champions Mumbai Indians by 20 runs after finding themselves reeling at 24/4 after 6 overs in the first innings. It was opener Ruturaj Gaikwad’s rescue act that got CSK’s innings back on track. He smashed an unbeaten 88 to guide the “Yellow Army” to 156/6 in 20 overs. In response, Kieron Pollard-led MI could only manage 136/8 in their 20 overs and so lost the 30th match of IPL 2021.

Shubman Gill | Vipin Pawar / Sportzpics for BCCI
Shubman Gill | Vipin Pawar / Sportzpics for BCCI

West Indies all-rounder Andre Russell (3/9) and leg-spinner Varun Chakravarthy (3/13) bowled brilliantly to fold up RCB’s innings at 92 in 19 overs in match 31 of IPL 2021. KKR openers Shubman Gill (48) and debutant Venkatesh Iyer (41*) then steered the chase within 10 overs with excellent shots.

Shubman Gill was dismissed by Yuzvendra Chahal when KKR was only 10 runs away from the win. KKR’s victory helped them to climb to the fifth spot in the IPL 2021 points table from seventh with a net run rate of +0.110.

MS Dhoni (BCCI/IPL)
MS Dhoni (BCCI/IPL)
//

MS Dhoni’s Captaincy Was Spot On In IPL 2021 UAE Leg’s 1st Match: Virender Sehwag

Virender Sehwag, former Indian opener lauded MS Dhoni’s presence of mind and the on-field decision that turned the game upside down on Sunday in Dubai.

Chennai Super Kings skipper MS Dhoni’s on-field tactics against defending champions Mumbai Indians in the IPL 2021 match no. 30 in Dubai was simply remarkable. A Rohit Sharma-less MI began the UAE leg’s opening game in a phenomenal fashion, reducing Chennai to 24/4 inside the Powerplay’s 6 overs. But soon the fortunes turned in CSK’s way with opener Ruturaj Gaikwad firing all cylinders.

Virender Sehwag
Virender Sehwag (Image Credit: Twitter)

Virender Sehwag: MS Dhoni’s Captaincy Was Spot On

After Ruturaj Gaikwad’s unbeaten superb knock (88 not out off 58 balls), which helped Chennai to set a 157-run target, MS Dhoni rotated his bowlers in such a way that MI ultimately succumbed to a 20-run defeat. MS Dhoni & Co earned the valuable 2 points to gain the first position on the points table.

Virender Sehwag lauded veteran MS Dhoni’s presence of mind and the on-field decision that turned the game upside down. The former cricketer said the CSK captain has the sharpest brain among all in the ongoing tournament.

“MS Dhoni’s captaincy was spot on, no doubt about that. He doesn’t plan before the game. He observes the things on the field and takes calls accordingly. He watches the opposition batsmen and deploys a bowling attacks according to that. He anticipates in such a way that if a batter is comfortable against pace, he brings in a spinner and vice-versa,” Sehwag said.

Ruturaj Gaikwad
Ruturaj Gaikwad (Image Credit: Twitter)

“The best example was when he set the field for Dwayne Bravo. Four fielders were inside the circle to stop singles and generate the possibilities of a wicket. And that’s how they got rid of Ishan Kishan. Indeed, he’s a good captain but, his bowlers bowl according to the field setup. If anybody has the sharpest brain in this league, it’s MS Dhoni,” he added.

CSK recovered from 24 for 4 to post a creditable 156 for 6 mainly due to Ruturaj Gaikwad’s unbeaten 88 and then defended the total by restricting the defending champions to 136 for 8 in 20 overs to grab the top spot on the points table with 6 wins from 8 games.

Virender Sehwag: The Turning Point Ws Bringing In Josh Hazlewood Against Kieron Pollard

Virender Sehwag further spoke about the dismissal of stand-in MI captain Kieron Pollard, calling it the turning point of the game.

“For me the turning point was bringing in Josh Hazlewood against Kieron Pollard. Because he knew, if he gets a spinner to bowl, Pollard won’t spare the bowler. So, I think, the game changed from there,” Sehwag concluded.

Kieron Pollard
Kieron Pollard (Image Credit: Twitter)

The 42-year-old commentator former batsman Virender Sehwag further mentioned the tactical astuteness shown by MS Dhoni when he brought on the pacers against the danger man in form Kieron Pollard who was the stand-in skipper. The burly West Indian has been a thorn in CSK’s side but he was nipped out early when Josh Hazlewood struck him on the pads for an easy LBW.

Kieron Pollard had turned out to be one of the game-changers for the Mumbai Indians as he smacked 87 off 34 balls against the same opponent- Chennai Super Kings in India in the first half of IPL 2021. He hit eight sixes and six fours in the knock and made sure that his team got over the line in a tough chase of 219 runs.

But in the return match, Kieron Pollard could manage only 15 off 14 balls, while MI’s top scorer Saurabh Tiwary’s unbeaten knock of 50 off 40 balls went in vain.

Kevin Pietersen
Kevin Pietersen. Image Credits: Twitter
//

Kevin Pietersen Doesn’t Know What Kieron Pollard Was Thinking As Jasprit Bumrah Was Taken Off After 1 Over

Kevin Pietersen feels Mumbai Indians missed a trick, allowing Chennai Super Kings to get to over 150 when they had them on the mat at 24/4. Kevin Pietersen was pretty outspoken at the mid-innings interval of the Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians Match 30 of the IPL 2021, believing MI lost grip of the game when they allowed CSK to come back in the game after having them on the mat at 24/4 in the Powerplay(6 overs).
CSK finished their innings on 156/6 thanks to Ruturaj Gaikwad’s innings of 88 not out and Dwayne Bravo who played a cameo of 23 runs from just eight balls, including three massive sixes besides picking 3 scalps. CSK was 24/4 at one stage and Ambati Rayudu was retired hard but the momentum was shifted as unlike the opening pacers Trent Boult and Adam Milne, the spinner Krunal Pandya(2 overs 27 runs) was too expensive.
Kevin Pietersen file image | Faheem Hussain - Sportzpics
Kevin Pietersen file image | Faheem Hussain – Sportzpics

Kevin Pietersen: Mumbai Indians Missed A Trick And Lost Despite Starting Well

The total proved to be a match-winning one as MI finished on 136/8; thus, losing the contest by 20 runs. Kevin Pietersen was sceptical of Kieron Pollard’s captaincy, pointing out areas where he felt Mumbai Indians should have been tactically smarter.

“Mumbai started so well. They really got themselves into the game. They knew they needed to get themselves going. They lost their captain so he was replaced. And they started so well. CSK was 4 down very early. Ambati Rayudu retired out. When you get that many wickets early, you have to keep your foot down. You talk about momentum; you need to keep it going,” Pietersen said during the innings interval on Star Sports.

Kieron Pollard
Kieron Pollard (Image Credit: Twitter)

“I think Mumbai Indians missed a trick. I don’t know what Kieron Pollard was thinking by not bowling Jasprit Bumrah for 2 or 3 overs. They could have been 40/7, 50/7. CSK could have been 60, 70, or 80 all out. I’m not being silly when I say that. You have got to bowl your fast, strike bowlers.”

Jasprit Bumrah was taken off after just one over, and the ball was handed to Krunal Pandya and Rahul Chahar. Although Rahul Chahar bowled a tight spell at one end, Krunal Pandya leaked runs with Ruturaj Gaikwad and Ravindra Jadeja growing in confidence. Apart from the MI pacers Trent Boult, Adam Milne, and Jasprit Bumrah who took 2 wickets each, the other bowlers failed to take a scalp.

Kevin Pietersen:  Mumbai Indians Should Have Cleaned CSK Out

The two Ravindra Jadeja and Ruturaj Gaikwad stitched a partnership of 81 runs to put CSK back in the game, which is something  Kevin Pietersen reckons should have been avoided given the fact that 3 of their top four were all dismissed for ducks – Ambati Rayudu was retired hurt – MS Dhoni fell for 3 and Suresh Raina for 4.

Dwayne Bravo. (AFP)
Dwayne Bravo. (AFP)/ AFP PHOTO / PUNIT PARANJPE

“They were allowed into the game. There is nowhere in this world that they should have been in this game. Mumbai Indians should have cleaned them out. These are things that are discussed in team meetings. If you had been 40/4 or something like that, you don’t bring spinners in and if you do, you don’t put fielders in the boundary,” Pietersen added at the end of the match.

Ravindra Jadeja and Dwayne Bravo scored 26 and 23 respectively before being dismissed while Faf du Plessis, Moeen Ali, Suresh Raina, and MS Dhoni couldn’t contribute even 5 runs each. For CSK, pacers Dwayne Bravo scalped three wickets and Deepak Chahar took two scalps. For Mumbai Indians, Saurabh Tiwary was the highest scorer after playing a knock of 50 runs.

With this win, Chennai Super Kings went to the top of the IPL table while Mumbai is now in danger of falling outside the top 4 if they get on a losing streak.

Chennai Super Kings 156 for 6 (Gaikwad 88*, Jadeja 26, Milne 2-21) beat Mumbai Indians 136 for 8 (Tiwary 50*, Bravo 3-25, D Chahar 2-19) by 20 runs

Dwayne Bravo. (AFP)
Dwayne Bravo. (AFP)/ AFP PHOTO / PUNIT PARANJPE
//

Playing Against IPL’s Toughest Team Mumbai Indians Is Like Playing A Final: Dwayne Bravo:

Dwayne Bravo, Chennai Super Kings (CSK) all-rounder said that any match against Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League (IPL) feels like a final. Dwayne Bravo’s remarks came after due to his all-around performance CSK defeated Mumbai Indians by 20 runs on Sunday here at the Dubai International Stadium.

For CSK, opener Ruturaj Gaikwad had played an unbeaten inning of 88 runs as the MS Dhoni-led outfit posted 156/6 in the allotted twenty overs despite being in troubles after being 24/4 inside the powerplay. Dwayne Bravo also played a cameo of 23 runs from just eight balls, including three massive sixes besides picking 3 scalps.

File photo of Dwayne Bravo. Image Source : GETTY IMAGES
File photo of Dwayne Bravo. Image Source: GETTY IMAGES

Dwayne Bravo: Playing Against IPL’s Toughest Team MI Is Like A Final

Ruturaj Gaikwad scored 88 to bail CSK out of trouble batting first. The MS Dhoni-led outfit posted 156/6 in the allotted twenty overs after being 24 for four inside the powerplay. CSK was 24/4 at one stage and Ambati Rayudu was retired hard but the momentum was shifted after opener Ruturaj Gaikwad scored an unbeaten 88 off 58 balls which included 9 fours and 4 sixes.

Ravindra Jadeja and Dwayne Bravo scored 26 and 23 respectively before being dismissed while Faf du Plessis, Moeen Ali, Suresh Raina, and MS Dhoni couldn’t contribute even 5 runs each.

“It’s a good feeling, obviously against MI it’s the toughest team in IPL and it’s like a final playing against them, always a good feeling to win. Just tried to protect me in the last stages of CPL and when I came over here, just had one bowling session which was yesterday, and happy to get 4 overs through today.”

Ruturaj Gaikwad
Ruturaj Gaikwad (Image Credit: Twitter)

“Now I bat lower down the order with the batting line-up like CSK, for me, it’s just about trying to get the momentum and try to capitalize, adjust and adapt,” Dwayne Bravo told host broadcaster Star Sports after the match ended.

“Just try to give the best of my ability whenever I go out to bat. Gaikwad has been our star player end of last season and this season and he is a quality player. Played proper cricket shots and played till the end. He has an appetite for runs and it’s good to get over the line this game,” he added.

For CSK, pacers Dwayne Bravo scalped three wickets and Deepak Chahar took two scalps. For Mumbai Indians, Saurabh Tiwary was the highest scorer after playing a knock of 50 runs.

CSK Goes On Top Of The IPL 2021 Points Table

With this win, Chennai Super Kings went to the top of the IPL table while Mumbai is now in danger of falling outside the top 4 if they get on a losing streak. CSK will next lock horns against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) on Friday. With Ravindra Jadeja (26 off 33), Ruturaj Gaikwad added 81 off 64 balls for the fifth wicket.

Chennai Super Kings (Image Credit: Twitter)
Chennai Super Kings (Image Credit: Twitter)

That set the platform for some late-overs hitting, which Ruturaj Gaikwad and Dwayne Bravo (23 off 8) did with aplomb, Super Kings taking 58 off the last four overs. MI never looked comfortable in their chase and was 94/6 before recovering slightly but couldn’t manage more than 136.

With 3 wickets, Dwayne Bravo becomes the third-highest wicket-taker in IPL history after Lasith Malinga(170) and Amit Mishra (166). He has taken 159 scalps from 145 matches.

Chennai Super Kings 156 for 6 (Gaikwad 88*, Jadeja 26, Milne 2-21) beat Mumbai Indians 136 for 8 (Tiwary 50*, Bravo 3-25, D Chahar 2-19) by 20 runs

Rohit Sharma and Mumbai Indians created history as they won the IPL title for the fifth time, with Rohit winning it for the sixth time. , BCCI/IPL Twitter handle
Rohit Sharma and Mumbai Indians created history as they won the IPL title for the fifth time, with Rohit winning it for the sixth time. , BCCI/IPL Twitter handle
//

Rohit Sharma Should Be Fine To Play The Next IPL 2021 Game Vs KKR: Mahela Jayawardene:

Mahela Jayawardene, Mumbai Indians head coach, after suffering a 20-run defeat against Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021, said regular skipper Rohit Sharma will be available for the next game, which will be against 7th placed Kolkata Knight Riders.

The duo of Rohit Sharma and Hardik Pandya missed out on the match against CSK which was played in Dubai International Stadium on Sunday.

Mumbai Indians coach Mahela Jayawardene (Photo| Mumbai Indians website)
Mumbai Indians coach Mahela Jayawardene (Photo| Mumbai Indians website)

Mahela Jayawardene: Rohit Sharma Should Be Fine To Play The Next Game While Hardik Pandya Had A Niggle In Training Which Isn’t Serious

Kieron Pollard captained the Mumbai Indians side in the absence of their regular skipper Rohit Sharma, who was given additional time off after returning from the England tour where he was on duty with the Indian team in their Test series against England.

“Rohit was batting and doing his running after coming back from the UK; we felt he needed extra few days, so he should be fine to play the next game. Hardik was training, had a niggle, so (just) precaution and giving him extra days, nothing serious,” said Mahela Jayawardene during a virtual post-match conference.

Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma (Image Credit: Twitter)

 

For CSK, Dwayne Bravo scalped three wickets and Deepak Chahar took two to restrict MI to 136/8. Saurabh Tiwary was the top scorer for Mumbai Indians with his knock of 50 runs. With this win, Chennai Super Kings went to the top of the points table while Mumbai is now in danger of falling outside the top four.

“Well, I think the pitch was not doing much, to be honest, in the second innings, the wicket was pretty good. The odd one sat up a little bit. I agree we probably gave a couple of soft dismissals, we probably needed someone to take responsibility and bat through the innings, which we did not do. That was the difference with CSK with Ruturaj Gaikwad doing that for them,” said Mahela Jayawardene.

Chennai Super Kings won the match by 20 runs despite looking at one stage to be losing the match before Ruturaj Gaikwad came to their rescue.

Mahela Jayawardene: Mumbai Indians Disappointed With How They Handled The Situation Despite Reducing CSK To 24/4

Ruturaj Gaikwad scored 88 to bail CSK out of trouble batting first. The MS Dhoni-led outfit posted 156/6 in the allotted twenty overs after being 24 for four inside the powerplay. CSK was 24/4 at one stage and Ambati Rayudu was retired hard but the momentum was shifted after opener Ruturaj Gaikwad scored an unbeaten 88 off 58 balls which included 9 fours and 4 sixes.

Ravindra Jadeja and Dwayne Bravo scored 26 and 23 before being dismissed while Faf du Plessis, Moeen Ali, Suresh Raina, and MS Dhoni couldn’t contribute even 5 runs each.

“Even though they (CSK) lost wickets, there was a set batsman (Gaikwad) who went till the end. We are disappointed with how we handled the situation,” the MI coach Mahela Jayawardene added.

Ruturaj Gaikwad
Ruturaj Gaikwad (Image Credit: Twitter)

Talking about Mumbai Indians’ batting, Mahela Jayawardene said: “We struggled in Chennai in the first half as we did not get used to the conditions. Here also, you know, it was not the easiest wicket, but probably needed some application. I put it down to game awareness and taking responsibility. The application out there is something we need to work on.”

Batting first in Dubai, Chennai was 24 for 4 at the end of the powerplay, with Ambati Rayudu additionally having retired hurt. But Ruturaj Gaikwad struck an unbeaten 88 off 58 balls, laced with nine fours and four sixes, to lift Super Kings to 156 for 6.

With Ravindra Jadeja (26 off 33), Ruturaj Gaikwad added 81 off 64 balls for the fifth wicket. That set the platform for some late-overs hitting, which Ruturaj Gaikwad and Dwayne Bravo (23 off 8) did with aplomb, Super Kings taking 58 off the last four overs. Mumbai Indians will next lock horns against Kolkata Knight Riders on Thursday.

Chennai Super Kings 156 for 6 (Gaikwad 88*, Jadeja 26, Milne 2-21) beat Mumbai Indians 136 for 8 (Tiwary 50*, Bravo 3-25, D Chahar 2-19) by 20 runs

Chennai Super Kings (Image Credit: Twitter)
Chennai Super Kings (Image Credit: Twitter)
/

IPL 2021: CSK vs MI- CSK’s Predicted XI For The 1st Match

IPL 2021, UAE leg is all set to get underway from September 19 and it would be a blockbuster to get things rolling in UAE as defending champions Mumbai Indians lock horns with familiar foes in Chennai Super Kings in Dubai. While expectations would be high from both sides, the winner would be the one side who holds their nerves best on the given day as both teams are well-matched on paper.

The two teams have met on 32 occasions, with Mumbai being the winners 19 times. CSK holds the 2nd spot in the points table with 10 points. The MS Dhoni-led side has won 5 matches and lost 2 out of 7 matches. On the other hand, Mumbai Indians are in the 4th spot in the points table with 8 points. Out of 7 games, MI has won 4 matches and lost 3. In the earlier encounter in India in IPL 2021, MI won the match by 4 wickets while chasing a mammoth target of 219 runs.

For CSK, they have concerns to address ahead of their opener against MI as a couple of their stars – Faf du Plessis and Sam Curran – may miss out.  While the SA cricketer picked up an injury during a CPL match and that puts his participation in doubt, the English all-rounder has arrived in Dubai only on Wednesday morning and has to serve a mandatory 6-day quarantine – which makes him unavailable.

Chennai Super Kings vs Mumbai Indians ©BCCI/IPL
Chennai Super Kings vs Mumbai Indians ©BCCI/IPL

IPL 2021:- Chennai Super Kings Predicted XI:-

Robin Uthappa

Robin Uthappa
Robin Uthappa (Image Credit: Twitter)

Robin Uthappa might get a chance to play for Chennai Super Kings in the match against Mumbai Indians as Faf du Plessis is currently injured. Faf du Plessis recently faced a groin injury during a CPL 2021 and reports suggest that he might need one week to recover.

As a result, the team might give Robin Uthappa a chance in the opening slot against Mumbai Indians. The unfailingly consistent and proven match-winner, Robin Uthappa, who has scored 4607 IPL runs, was traded to Chennai Super Kings by the Rajasthan Royals ahead of IPL 2021 Player Auction.

Ruturaj Gaikwad

Ruturaj Gaikwad
Ruturaj Gaikwad (Image Credit: Twitter)

Ruturaj Gaikwad will be the other opener CSK might choose in the opening game of IPL 2021. Ruturaj Gaikwad executed a great batting show in the first leg, scoring 196 runs in 7 games at an average of 28. He also smacked 2 half-centuries, while batting at a strike rate of 128+.

Moeen Ali

Moeen Ali
Moeen Ali[photo: Twitter]
After his brilliant quickfire knocks in the first leg of IPL 2021, Moeen Ali is most likely to be part of the CSK’s playing XI against MI. The England player played 6 matches in the first leg, scoring 206 runs in 6 innings at an average of 34.33. The leg-handed batsman owned a strike rate of 157+ and also hit 1 fifty. He also picked 5 scalps averaging an impressive 14.8.

Suresh Raina

Suresh Raina
Suresh Raina (Image Credit: Twitter)

Suresh Raina is another player who might make it into the playing XI during CSK’s opening game against Mumbai Indians in IPL 2021. In 7 matches so far, the left-handed batsman scored 123 runs in 6 innings at an average of 24.60. Suresh Raina has also hit a half-century in one game. He has played exactly 200 IPL games and has scored 5491 runs in IPL and is the third-highest run-getter in IPL history.

Ravindra Jadeja

Ravindra Jadeja
Ravindra Jadeja. Image Credits: Twitter

Ravindra Jadeja is one player who will definitely make it into the playing XI for CSK in the opening encounter against Mumbai Indians in IPL 2021. The left-handed batsman scored 131 runs in 6 innings at an average of 131. He also batted at a strike rate of 126+ and scored a half-century. He also picked 6 wickets while bowling at an economy of 6.70 and an average of 26.83.

MS Dhoni

MS Dhoni (BCCI/IPL)
MS Dhoni (BCCI/IPL)

MS Dhoni will lead the team in the match against Mumbai Indians in IPL 2021 opener. In the first leg, the wicketkeeper-batsman could not come up with a big knock in any game. In 4 innings, he scored 37 runs averaging a below-par 12.33.  MS Dhoni is the best option for a wicketkeeper for CSK.

While MS Dhoni has hung up his boots on a 16-year illustrious career for Team India, he will be seen donning the CSK colours once again. MS Dhoni would want to end IPL 2021 on a winning note as this season may be the last one for the keeper. CSK failed to qualify for the first time in IPL history in 2020 but the MS Dhoni-led team will want to make amends.

Imran Tahir

Imran Tahir
Imran Tahir (Image Credit: Twitter)

Imran Tahir is another player who might make it to CSK’s playing XI in the opening game. Since the IPL 2021 2nd phase will take place in UAE, spinners will be a lot more effective. As a result, CSK might induct 42-year-old veteran Imran Tahir into the team for the game against Mumbai Indians.

The 2019 purple cup winner, who picked 26 scalps in 17 games in 2019, didn’t get enough opportunities in IPL 2020 and IPL 2021. He played only 4 games in the last 2 seasons picking up 3 scalps.

Mitchell Santner

Mitchell Santner
Mitchell Santner. (Photo Source: Twitter)

For another spinner in the team, Mitchell Santner can be part of CSK in the IPL 2021 opener against Mumbai Indians. The Kiwi player did not play any match during the first leg. In 6 games in IPL so far, the bowling all-rounder Santner has picked 6 wickets and scored 32 runs. His matches came in 2019 and 2020 but he didn’t get enough opportunities to prove himself.

Deepak Chahar

Deepak Chahar, Twitter @BCCI
Deepak Chahar, Twitter @BCCI

Deepak Chahar is the first pacer that CSK will pick in the IPL 2021 opener against Mumbai Indians. The right-arm pacer showed magnificent form in the first leg, picking 2 four-wicket hauls. With 8 wickets in 7 games, he averaged 24.12 and an economy of 8.04.

Lungi Ngidi

Lungi Ngidi (AFP)
Lungi Ngidi (AFP)

Sam Curran and Dwayne Bravo might miss the first game due to quarantine protocols. Hence, Lungi Ngidi might play as a pacer in the opening game against Mumbai Indians. During the first leg, the South African pacer played 3 matches. He picked 5 wickets at an average of 25, with a three-wicket haul in one match.

Shardul Thakur

Shardul Thakur. (Photo Source: Twitter)
Shardul Thakur. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Shardul Thakur is another pacer that CSK might go for. The right-arm pacer played all 7 matches during the first leg. He scalped 5 wickets. He was a bit costly with his economy rate of 10.33 and his average of 53.4 wasn’t that good.

However, he is a crucial bowler for CSK with his ability to pick wickets when the team needs them. Moreover, he is also a great tailender batsman as proved in the Test tours to England and Australia in international cricket. He has picked up 51 scalps in 52 IPL games so far.

Other options:-

Ambati Rayudu

Ambati Rayudu © BCCI
Ambati Rayudu © BCCI

In 7 matches in the Indian leg of IPL 2021, Ambati Rayudu scored 136 runs averaging 34 at an excellent strike rate of 200 and might play in the middle order. Once a regular in the Indian ODI team, Ambati Rayudu would come in handy for the CSK in the middle-order, if needed.

Josh Hazlewood

Josh Hazlewood Credit: iplt20.com/Ron Gaunt/Sportzpics for BCCI
Josh Hazlewood Credit: iplt20.com/Ron Gaunt/Sportzpics for BCCI

Josh Hazlewood played 3 games in IPL 2020. Josh Hazelwood had cited personal reasons for pulling out of IPL 2021. In his absence, CSK roped in left-arm pacer Jason Behrendorff from Australia. However, he did not play a single game for the 3-time champions in IPL 2021.

But Josh Hazlewood announced his availability for the UAE leg of IPL 2021. He has picked 1 scalp in his brief IPL career playing 3 games for CSK. Josh Hazlewood, who played only 3 matches for CSK last season, will be available to play for the 3-time champions in the remainder of the season, starting September 19 in the UAE.

CSK Playing XI vs MI: Ruturaj Gaikwad, Robin Uthappa, Moeen Ali, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu/ Mitchell Santner, Ravindra Jadeja, MS Dhoni (c & wk), Shardul Thakur, Deepak Chahar, Lungi Ngidi, J Hazlewood/Imran Tahir

MS Dhoni
MS Dhoni (Image Credit: Twitter)
/

CSK Skipper MS Dhoni Lands In Chennai Before Indian Players’ Departure On August 13

CSK (Chennai Super Kings) skipper MS Dhoni landed in Chennai on Tuesday ahead of the departure of a group of players to the UAE, which will host the remainder of the Indian Premier League next month. A bunch of Indian players will travel to the UAE most likely on August 13, a top CSK official said.

With just a few weeks left for the IPL 2021 Phase 2, BCCI has given permission to the franchises to start heading to UAE after August 10. The MS Dhoni-led CSK franchise is looking to head over to Dubai next weekend. CSK has confirmed that the players and support staff will leave for Dubai on August 13. The CSK CEO Kasi Viswanathan has said that the team is looking to arrive in Dubai on August 14 or 15.

MS Dhoni (BCCI/IPL)
MS Dhoni (BCCI/IPL)

CSK Skipper MS Dhoni Lands In Chennai

It is notable that Chennai Super Kings usually starts practice a month or at least 15 days earlier as several players from the franchise are retired while some of them are yet to play in the international arena. Thus, the training helps them get in the groove and ensure they are on top of the opposition from the onset. They had previously started training in Chennai for a month ahead of the IPL 2021. The results showed for it as they won 5 out of 7 matches in the opening leg.

“Indian players in the team, whoever is available, will travel to UAE on August 13 in all likelihood,” CSK CEO Kasi Viswanathan told PTI.

Fans celebrated MS Dhoni’s arrival in Chennai on social media.

“Lion Day Entry,” CSK posted with a photo of Dhoni on its Twitter handle about the captain reaching the city. There will be no camp in Chennai before the CSK players fly out to the UAE, Viswanathan said.

CSK-Chennai Super Kings (Image Credit: Twitter)
CSK-Chennai Super Kings (Image Credit: Twitter)

The second half of the IPL 2021 will be held in UAE from September 19 after the tournament was postponed due to the outbreak of COVID-19 in its bubble.

The BCCI then decided to conduct the remaining matches in the UAE, which successfully hosted IPL 2020. CSK resumes its IPL campaign on September 19 with a match against Mumbai Indians. The MS Dhoni-led side was in the second spot with 10 points after seven games before the league was postponed due to a bio bubble breach.

CSK’s Three Key Foreign Players Are Moeen Ali, Sam Curran, And Faf du Plessis

The England all-rounder Moeen Ali was the star performer for the side during the first half of IPL 2021 and something similar is expected from him in the UAE leg too. CSK’s new No.3, Moeen Ali slammed 206 runs in six innings at an average of 34.33 and a strike rate of 157.25. He also picked up five wickets and turned a couple of games on his own.

Sam Curran is a key all-rounder for the MS Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings. The English all-rounder had a wonderful outing in the IPL 2020 edition and was one of the few positives for the side which had a forgettable campaign. In IPL 2020, Sam Curran scored 186 runs and also picked up 13 wickets in 14 innings.

Sam Curran for CSK (Photo: Twitter/@IPL)
Sam Curran for CSK (Photo: Twitter/@IPL)

Chennai Super Kings batting mainstay Faf du Plessis is the third leading run-getter in the IPL 2021 phase 1. The former South Africa skipper has amassed 320 runs in 7 innings at an average of 64.00, including 4 fifties. He is a vital cog in the batting lineup for CSK.

The platform laid by Faf du Plessis and opener Ruturaj Gaikwad (196 runs at a strike rate of 128.94) eased the pressure on the middle order and went a long way enabling CSK to put up massive totals. Ambati Rayudu-136 runs, Ravindra Jadeja-131 runs, Suresh Raina-123 runs also were among runs.

Rahul Dravid
Rahul Dravid - K. MURALI KUMAR
/

Indian Batsmen Have An Opportunity To Reflect That Not All Wickets Are Going To Be Flat: Rahul Dravid

Rahul Dravid believes that the new crop of Indian batsmen will learn with experience that “not all wickets will be flat” and they need to develop the art of scrapping it out on low-scoring tracks like the ones on offer during the last two T20Is against Sri Lanka.

India lost the three-match T20I series against Sri Lanka 1-2 on Thursday, playing without nine of their first-team players due to COVID-19 related isolation. Rookies Devdutt Padikkal, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Nitish Rana besides out of form Sanju Samson literally struggled against a quality spin bowling attack led by leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga accompanied by Akila Dhananjaya and Dhananjaya de Silva.

Wanindu Hasaranga Celebrates A Wicket in 1st T20I @SLC
Wanindu Hasaranga Celebrates A Wicket in 1st T20I @SLC

Rahul Dravid: Indian Batsmen Have An Opportunity To Reflect That Not All Wickets Are Going To Be Flat

Asked if he was disappointed in the manner the younger players were found wanting against Wanindu Hasaranga and company, Rahul Dravid replied in the negative.

“I am not disappointed as they are young. They are going to learn and get better only when they are exposed to these kind of conditions and quality of bowling. Sri Lankan team’s bowling attack is an international bowling attack,” Rahul Dravid said.

But the former India captain admitted that there is a lot to learn on how to play on challenging tracks, saying pitches in domestic cricket have become easier to bat as compared to his times.

“They would have liked to score a few more runs. They now have an opportunity to reflect that not all wickets are going to be flat. We need to find ways to scrap and score 130, 140 on these wickets,” Rahul Dravid observed.

“It’s really a good learning as they are all young players. This is a great opportunity to reflect on these performances and may be come up with some slightly better strategies. Let me be fair, we don’t get these kind of conditions very often in T20 cricket but when you do, I think, you have responsibility to play slightly better,” the head of NCA said.

Rahul Dravid Photo Credit: PTI
Rahul Dravid Photo Credit: PTI

Rahul Dravid said even his generation had their share of struggles but he feels during their times, they did play on tracks that offered turn and some were “under-prepared.”

“I think the wickets in domestic cricket may have got better. I don’t think the talent is missing it’s just that you need experience to figure out a few more stroke making options in these kinds of pitches,” Rahul Dravid opined.

The problem with the COVID-19 isolation was the fact that except skipper Shikhar Dhawan, there wasn’t a single experienced batsman available who would have nicely blended with the youngsters in this team.

“It needs time and experience and you need to blood young players with experienced players so that you have that cushion. Obviously, last couple of games, we didn’t have that cushion, most of guys other than Shikhar were young.”

Rahul Dravid didn’t want to take names of who all are T20 World Cup aspirants while praising the Indian spin quartet of Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Varun Chakravarthy, and Rahul Chahar.

“We have a really good crop of spinners who are coming through. Heartening to see how our four spinners performed.”

In the 3rd T20I, Sri Lanka chased down the 82-run target in the 15th over to win by 7 wickets and take the T20 series 2-1, having lost the ODIs 1-2. With India forced to play with only five specialist batsmen once again, the home side won again as they were led by the ever-impressive Wanindu Hasaranga (4-9) mixing up his leg-spins and googlies, as Sri Lanka sent India’s top-order batsmen packing, turning the powerplay (4-29) into a highly unproductive one.

Rahul Dravid Defends Sanju Samson Despite Poor Run In T20Is For The Pitch In The Last Couple Of Matches Wasn’t Easiest To Bat On

Sanju Samson, who has now failed in nine consecutive T20 matches since last year, was defended by the Indian coach. Sanju Samson’s scores in the T20I series against Sri Lanka do not paint a good picture.

For someone who was tipped to make an impact before the T20 World Cup, 34 runs in 3 matches (with two fours and a six) at a strike rate of 94.44 and an average of just 11.33, these numbers are a massive disappointment. Sanju Samson simply squandered yet another golden opportunity before the T20 World Cup in October as he struggled against the Sri Lankan attack.

“It was not the easiest pitch to bat on. In ODIs, he got a chance and scored 46. He was batting well in the first T20 but last couple of wickets (pitches) were challenging. I guess yeah, if you look back at the series, we will be a little disappointed. Having said that not only Sanju but a lot of young guys in this team are talented kids, and we need to patient with them.”

Sanju Samson
Sanju Samson dives back to stop the ball from being hit on the wicket. (AP Photo)

So far in his career, Sanju Samson‘s T20 numbers are ordinary — 117 runs in 10 games at a strike rate of 110 despite being given opportunities to bat in the top four. In his last 10 T20I innings for India, his scores read- 19, 6, 8, 2, 23, 15, 10, 27, 7, 0. Rahul Dravid was also impressed by the fact that the young team was able to live a cooped-up life in a bio-bubble for 45 days with only six matches to play.

“It’s credit to all boys in the manner they maintained their spirit and worked really hard, I can’t fault any of the boys for their effort,” Rahul Dravid said.

He praised skipper Shikhar Dhawan and his deputy Bhuvneshwar Kumar for maintaining a good team environment in difficult times.

“Shikhar, Bhuvi, the leadership group for the environment that they created and terrific energy that they created, I can’t fault them on their effort.”

However, he put things in perspective as to how playing cricket in these times of pandemic was a privilege when so many people around the world were suffering.

Rahul Dravid Photo Credit: PTI
Rahul Dravid Photo Credit: PTI
/

Rahul Dravid Says He Hasn’t Really Thought Of Continuing The Role Of Head Coach Further After Losing T20I Series

Rahul Dravid has given a much-awaited reply to questions about him taking up a full-time role as Team India’s head coach. Rahul Dravid said that although he has enjoyed the experience of leading the young team in Sri Lanka, he hasn’t thought about continuing it further.

Although he has successfully managed India’s under-19 and ‘A’ teams in the past, this tour was Rahul Dravid’s first assignment as a head coach of a senior international team. Given his reputed image among the cricket fraternity, it was naturally – and optimistically – seen as a stepping stone towards a full-time role.

Rahul Dravid
Rahul Dravid – K. MURALI KUMAR

Rahul Dravid Hasn’t Really Thought Of Continuing The Role Of Head Coach Further

However, the batting legend remained non-commital and simply pointed at a lot of challenges in the role.

“I have enjoyed this experience. I have not really thought of anything far ahead. To be honest with you, I am happy doing what I am doing. For me, I have not given it any other thought except this tour and getting through this tour and enjoying the experience. I love working with these guys, it’s pretty great. And no, I haven’t given it any thought really. You know, there are a lot of challenges doing a full-time role so I really don’t know,” Dravid said on Friday.

Ravi Shastri. (Photo Source: Twitter)
Ravi Shastri. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Rahul Dravid has been touted as a potential head coach ever since his retirement in 2012. However, pundits and former cricketers close to him have often suggested that the 48-year-old is reluctant to put up with the immense travel and trips away from home that comes with the job.

Even as Rahul Dravid is with one national team for the upcoming ODI and T20I series in Lanka, Ravi Shastri is currently gearing up with Virat Kohli-led India for the five-match Test series against England.  Under Ravi Shastri, India had reasonable success across formats but hasn’t ended their 8-year-long ICC-title drought.

Hence, it is believed that Rahul Dravid will be the ideal replacement, who guided India U-19 to the World Cup triumph in early 2018. After his international retirement, Rahul Dravid served as the head coach of the U-19 and India Aside from 2016-2019 before taking over his current role as the head of the National Cricket Academy (NCA).

Rahul Dravid’s First Coaching Assignment Was A Moderate Success With India Winning The ODI Series And Losing The T20I Series

The T20I series, which concluded with a 2-1 Sri Lankan win on Thursday, had also started on a positive note with a 38-run victory. However, Krunal Pandya testing positive for COVID-19 and isolation for his eight close contacts derailed the run and allowed Sri Lanka to clinch the next two games.

Prithvi Shaw, Suryakumar Yadav, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Ishan Kishan, Yuzvendra Chahal, K Gowtham, and Deepak Chahar are the eight players identified as close contacts of Krunal Pandya, who tested positive for Covid-19. Although all eight tested negative for the virus, they were ruled out of the T20I series against Sri Lanka.

Shikhar Dhawan
Shikhar Dhawan (Getty Images)(HT_PRINT)

India named 4 T20I debutants in Nitish Rana, Devdutt Padikkal, Ruturaj Gaikwad, and Chetan Sakariya for the 2nd T20I match. Put into bat, India was restricted to a modest 132 for 5 with skipper Shikhar Dhawan top-scoring with 40. The hosts then chased down the target with four wickets in hand and two balls to spare.

In the 3rd T20I, Shikhar Dhawan’s decision to win the toss and opt to bat in the series decider against Sri Lanka backfired as the visitors could manage a meagre 81/8 in the allotted 20 overs. Spinner Wanindu Hasaranga was the wrecker in chief with four wickets haul while Dasun Shanaka took a couple of wickets.

Shikhar Dhawan departed for a duck while the likes of IPL stars Ruturaj Gaikwad, Devdutt Padikkal, Sanju Samson, and Nitish Rana were disappointed. Kuldeep Yadav helped India get past their lowest total. India’s lowest total in T20Is is 74 which came against Australia in 2008. In the match, Sandeep Warrier received his maiden T20 cap for India.

India Squad For Sri Lanka Tour (Image: BCCI)
India Squad For Sri Lanka Tour (Image: BCCI)
/

India vs Sri Lanka 2021: If Top 3 Batsmen Fire, India Can Seal Win – Aakash Chopra

Aakash Chopra, a former opener turned commentator feels that while Sri Lanka has a definite advantage going into the deciding T20I, Team India can still triumph if the top 3 in their batting line-up rise to the occasion.

Team India and Sri Lanka will meet in the deciding T20I on Thursday after the hosts defeated a weak Indian outfit in the second game on Wednesday. The visitors were forced to play with just five batsmen, with others put in isolation after all-rounder Krunal Pandya tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday ruling 9 players out from the last 2 T20Is.

Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Aakash Chopra: India Is Weak In The Batting Department But Can Win If Their Top 3 Batsmen Fire

Speaking on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra admitted that it will be a tough task for Team India to beat Sri Lanka considering the lack of depth in their batting.

Aakash Chopra stated: “Due to the extraordinary circumstances, Team India are weak in the batting. If you look at the batting line-up available for Team India, Shikhar Dhawan has Ruturaj Gaikwad as opening partner followed by Devdutt Padikkal, Sanju Samson, Nitish Rana and then Bhuvneshwar Kumar.”

Speaking about the lack of genuine batsmen in the starting XI in the 2nd T20I, Aakash Chopra went on to say that this is not really a batting line-up as it’s not yet proven and cannot be expected to win matches immediately.

Aakash Chopra said; “That’s not really a batting lineup. There is no depth in it. Yes, there is quality but it is not proven. These youngsters have only just entered international cricket. You cannot expect them to win matches immediately. Of course, we need to be hopeful but Sri Lanka definitely have the edge now.”

Shikhar Dhawan
Shikhar Dhawan (Getty Images)(HT_PRINT)

Aakash Chopra, however, added that all is not lost for Team India. Giving the example of Sunrisers Hyderabad, he pointed out that T20 games can be won with a solid top 3.

Aakash Chopra elaborated: “I am sure what Rahul (Dravid) will be telling everyone is that in T20 matches, if the top 3 perform well, then you don’t need a lot from those batting at 5,6 and 7.”

Aakash Chopra talked about how Shikhar Dhawan, David Warner, and Kane Williamson helped the Sunrisers Hyderabad win matches in the IPL in the past, despite having a fragile lower-middle order.

“Take the case of Sunrisers Hyderabad. When Dhawan was playing for them, the top three – Dhawan, David Warner and Kane Williamson – mostly did the job for them. If Team India score 150 batting first, they can still beat Sri Lanka. The visitors will bat if they win the toss. And if they lose, the Lankans are going to send Team India into bat.”

India named 4 T20I debutants in Nitish Rana, Devdutt Padikkal, Ruturaj Gaikwad, and Chetan Sakariya for the 2nd T20I match. While debutants-opener Ruturaj Gaikwad perished after making an 18-ball 21, Devdutt Padikkal, who walked in at number three, departed after making a quick-fire 29 off 23 balls as India lost the match by four wickets.

Put into bat, India was restricted to a modest 132 for 5 with skipper Shikhar Dhawan top-scoring with 40. The hosts then chased down the target with four wickets in hand and two balls to spare with Dhananjaya de Silva hitting a match-winning unbeaten 40.

Shikhar Dhawan Is Proud Of Young Squad Despite Suffering Loss

Reflecting on the loss in the 2nd T20I, Team India skipper Shikhar Dhawan admitted that the side did not put up enough runs on the board. He, however, praised the young side for putting up a tough fight and making life difficult for Sri Lanka.

Shikhar Dhawan said at the post-match conference: “The surface had turn, and it was stopping a bit. Of course, we knew one batsman was short, and we knew we had to construct the innings smartly, and we had to content ourselves at some point. We were 10-15 runs short.”

Krunal Pandya. (Photo: Twitter)
Krunal Pandya. (Photo: Twitter)

Shikhar Dhawan credited the fighting attitude of his young team.

He said: “However, I am very proud of the boys because we gave a very good fight. That never-say-die attitude is amazing. Hats off to the boys for taking the game to the last game over defending just 132. Credit to both bowlers and batters.”

Prithvi Shaw, Suryakumar Yadav, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Ishan Kishan, Yuzvendra Chahal, K Gowtham, and Deepak Chahar are the eight players identified as close contacts of Krunal Pandya, who tested positive for Covid-19 on Tuesday. Although all eight have tested negative for the virus, they have still been ruled out of the ongoing T20I series against Sri Lanka.

1 2 3 8