Former India opener Deep Dasgupta praised the captaincy of MS Dhoni in Chennai Super Kings' (CSK) 20-run win over Mumbai Indians in Match 30 of IPL 2021. The former Indian skipper orchestrated the team's approach in their defense with a par-score of 157 on the board, which drew praise from Dasgupta.
After fighting a state of peril, the three-time IPL champions were able to post a respectable total of 156. Mumbai Indians, playing without Hardik Pandya and Rohit Sharma, had some new faces in their batting unit as well.
Openers Quinton de Kock and Anmolpreet Singh steered their side to a decent start but the CSK quicks pulled things back and dismantled the top order in the latter stages of the powerplay.
Deep Dasgupta believed MS Dhoni's captaincy was excellent during the game. Dasgupta noted how Dhoni's ploy to change the field and bring back a specialist bowler did the trick in the case of Ishan Kishan and Kieron Pollard's wickets. Speaking on his YouTube channel, Dasgupta said:
"MS Dhoni's captaincy was on point. It was a par score on this wicket. For Ishan Kishan's wicket, he brought in Bravo, placing a man at short extra cover. Brilliant planning because the ball was stopping in the surface, so it is difficult to reach and play for a drive. Placement and execution was spot on from Bravo."
"He brought the seamer on for Pollard. We all know that Pollard plays spin very well. He brought in a pacer and got him straightaway. After that point, it was very difficult for the Mumbai Indians because there was no depth. Another masterclass by MSD, as far as captaincy is concerned. The partnership between (Saurabh) Tiwary and Pollard was crucial in MI's chances," Dasgupta added.
With Kishan just beginning to settle in at the crease, Dhoni deployed Dwayne Bravo with a short extra cover in place. Kishan went for an expansive cover drive on the very first delivery itself but the ball evaded the stumps through the inside edge and off to the boundary.
The plan worked itself out in the second delivery with perfection, however. Bravo pitched the delivery full and wide outside the off-stump. While Kishan connected the drive well, it found Suresh Raina well inside the circle.
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Spinners in the middle overs allowed the game to drift away: Deep Dasgupta on the momentum shifting CSK's way
Earlier in the day, CSK were in a state of absolute disarray after the pacers wreaked havoc in the powerplay. With Ambadi Rayudu injured as well, the franchise were running out of proper batsmen who could play over two-thirds of the innings.
Instead of persisting with his pacers who picked up wickets, Pollard chose to bring on his spinners in the eighth over. Dasgupta believes the move favored CSK as they were able to build a platform with ease to switch gears easily in the death overs.
"I felt that when spinners came on after the 8th over, CSK were at a very vulnerable stage. But at that stage when Pollard went with a spell of 4-5 overs with the spin, he let the game drift away. There the partnership of (Ruturaj) Gaikwad and (Ravindra) Jadeja was made, they were also able to set the platform to play the big shots in the death overs. Could have continued with the pacers to attack and get one more wicket," Dasgupta concluded.
While Rahul Chahar held the fort for MI, Krunal Pandya conceded 18 runs off his second over which proved to be a big factor in terms of the momentum shifting CSK's way.
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