The CSK and SRH had tossed up for the second round of the IPL season on Tuesday at Dubai International Stadium and Dhoni's men in yellow were levied with the immense expectations to revive back from the faltering grounds. For the first time in the series, CSK had a hopeful development after the team had won the toss and elected to bat first.
With batting first, the fans of CSK had gone excited as they could witness some vintage stuff from their batsmen. In what has become an unexpected change, CSK dropped batsman Jegadeesan from their side and included Piyush Chawla and the change has come at a high time when the CSK was pushed to repair the damages in the batting line-up. Jegadeesan deserved a chance again, especially when the team is batting first. An interesting change in the batting order was made. Sam Curran opened the innings along with Faf du Plessis.
Sam Curran proved his promotion up the order worthy by scoring 31 runs from 21 balls. With Faf falling for a duck, Watson and Rayudu put on a very good partnership of 81 runs before both of them got out for 42 and 41 runs respectively. Bravo failed to make a mark again with the bat and was dismissed for a first-ball duck. Dhoni and Jadeja played a good little cameo and took the side to a decent total of 167 runs. The CSK could have definitely added 15 to 20 runs to their total but the fact that nobody in the team made that big score of 70 or 80 which had in turn reduced their overall total.
With the modest target, SRH opened the innings only to witness a lurch opening. David Warner was dismissed early for 9 runs while Manish Pandey got out for a fantastic run out by Bravo. Bairstow was going well before getting out bowled to Ravindra Jadeja. Though the wickets were falling at one end, Kane Williamson played a steady innings, with the tenacity to chase the score. He was the lone warrior in the entire innings as he scored a wonderful 57 runs from 39 balls.
After SRH lost Williamson, CSK thought the game has come fully under their control. But Rashid Khan scared them a bit by scoring 14 runs from 8 balls. Once he got out through hit wicket, a win was finally, after consecutive defeats, guaranteed for the CSK by a margin of 20 runs. The CSK fans can finally whistle loud for this victory but still, there are a lot of concerns when it comes to team selection.
Piyush Chawla, who was included in the side instead of Jegadeesan, was given an opportunity to bowl only one over and the replacement perplexed the fans as why was the spinner included in the team in place of an aspiring young player and they took to social media and expressed that Dhoni needs to understand the importance of nurturing young players in the team who can be useful for the future. Karn Sharma's bowling in his first 3 overs, Jadeja's accuracy, and Bravo's death over bowling are the positive aspects for CSK in this match.
Finally, the team and the fans had got major relief after the victory and the CSK had paid SRH back of what the latter given to Dhoni's army in the first match. Though it wasn't the CSK style of victory, it had given a sign of hope that the team hasn't lost the race. With having a well and much-needed opener in the second round of the season, CSK must prepare to take on the shining teams in upcoming days and it must win at least five matches out of six to reserve a berth in the playoffs. They need to add up to it and maintain consistency to enter the play-offs.
By enjoying this winning momentum, the CSK must make sure that it takes the momentum forward to face and address all the challenges ahead. Happy Captain MS Dhoni had hailed the victory. While speaking in the post-match presentation ceremony, Dhoni said, "Today I felt we did a very good job even in the batting. There was some purpose with the bat and the batsmen assessed the situation very well".
The captain cool stated, "With a total like 160, it all depends on the start you get in the first six overs. The fast bowlers did the job, the spinners came into play and it was one game that was as close to being perfect". Praising English cricketer Sam Curran, Dhoni said, "Sam Curran is a complete cricketer for us. You need a seaming all-rounder, he plays the spinners well and he can give us those 15-45 runs and as the tournament progresses, we'll get more comfortable with the death bowling, which is why we kept Sam away from the death and Thakur and Bravo took over. We'll get better".