Indian batting legend Sunil Gavaskar recently suggested that Gujarat Titans (GT) sending in a message for pacer Mohit Sharma in the last over of the IPL 2023 final against Chennai Super Kings (CSK) may have affected the bowler's rhythm.
Gavaskar recounted how one of GT's substitute players ran to Sharma with drinks to send him a message. Skipper Hardik Pandya was also captured saying something to the seamer prior to the penultimate ball.
"After his first three or four bowlers, Gujarat sent in someone with a bottle of water for him," Gavaskar said (via Sports Tak). "It was right in the middle of the over. It wasn't that a wicket had fallen or there was a break."
"The substitute told him (Mohit Sharma) something, and then Hardik Pandya also had a word with him," he added. "That broke his rhythm, considering that he had started the over really well."
The equation came down to 10 off the last two balls as Sharma didn't allow the CSK batters to score a single boundary off the first four deliveries of the final over. However, Ravindra Jadeja hit a six, followed by a four, to take his team to a famous win.
The Super Kings side chased down the revised target of 171 in thrilling fashion, securing a five-wicket win (DLS method) to clinch the championship.
"He had considered several things before making the decision" - Sunil Gavaskar on MS Dhoni electing to bowl first in IPL 2023 final
CSK skipper MS Dhoni won the toss and decided to field first in the IPL 2023 final at the Narendra Modi Stadium on Monday, May 29. Sunil Gavaskar opined that it was the right call, given that there were high chances of rain interrupting the game.
Gavaskar suggested that Dhoni was aware the DLS method could have an impact on the game and hence elected to bowl first.
"Speaking at the toss, MS Dhoni had highlighted that there could be some rain and the DLS method might have a role to play," he said. "This was the reason he chose to field. It was the right call, and he had considered several things before making the decision."
GT posted 214 runs on the board, the highest-ever score in an IPL final. However, following a rain interruption during the innings break, the target was revised to 171 (15 overs).