One of the most awaited matches of the second leg of IPL 2021 wasn’t certainly a thriller but had enough ingredients for a cracker. The southern derby was held at Sharjah International Stadium which is the smallest venue in UAE. With a flat pitch providing less swing for the fast bowlers, a high-scoring game was on the cards. It was a game where frequent shifts of momentum were evident in both innings. CSK eventually won the classic matchup through a total team effort to boost up to the top of the points table while RCB had the worst possible start to their second leg.
Story of the match
The toss was delayed for 20 minutes due to a slight sandstorm at Sharjah. MS Dhoni won the toss and let RCB bat first, which was quite expected as the venue favors chasing. Kohli and Devdutt Padikkal gave a peach of a start reaching 111 without loss in just 13.2 overs. After each over, we expected CSK to panic but the captain and his bowlers kept a cool head and waited patiently for the breakthrough. Dwayne Bravo was the one to provide the crucial first wicket of Virat Kohli and from there, things lost from Challengers’ hands. The openers scored a combined score of 123. All the other RCB batsmen scored just 28 runs from 29 balls. A total that would have easily crossed 200 went through a stoop fall and ended at 156, thanks to the collective performance of CSK bowlers and fielders.
CSK structured their innings in a similar fashion. Faf Du Plessis and Ruturaj Gaikwad went off to a flying start scoring 59 runs from the powerplay. RCB suddenly turned the game in a span of two overs as they cleaned over both the set batsmen. But CSK was a strong unit to reckon with. The following Moeen Ali and Ambati Rayudu batted sensibly scoring boundaries at regular intervals to keep the run rate under control. It was too late when RCB managed to get rid of the pair. The veterans, MS Dhoni and Suresh Raina teamed up when there were just 24 runs required from 4.2 overs. They took their side to the shore comfortably with 2 overs to spare.
Virat Kohli is back
This might be the most delightful takeaway for RCB fans as well as for Indian fans despite the loss. RCB really needs their main players to contribute heavily and Virat Kohli found his form back at the perfect moment. The skipper scored a half-century and gave RCB a great start.
DDP is a serious talent
Devdutt Padikkal would probably be the future of RCB and Indian cricket. The young left-handed opener has a flamboyant style and he is able to score all around the ground. He was the top-scorer of the game with his 70 from 50.
CSK did what they do best
Since the start of IPL 2021, the key to every CSK victory was their tight death bowling. They might go for a lot of runs in the initial overs and even in the middle overs but the final five to six overs have been their own territory. None of the teams could make much impact in death overs against CSK and no other team had displayed better death bowling than them this season. RCB became just another victim yesterday.
The super start
On such conditions, any team would like to take advantage, especially in the powerplay overs. CSK openers utilized the powerplay in the best way possible scoring 59 runs. The game was lost from RCB since that start and laid the foundation for other CSK batsmen to play their shots fearlessly.
Experience is the key
To capitalize on breakthroughs, you need to keep the conscience clear and composed. CSK with all the abundant amount of experience wins match after match so easily but this factor would go mostly unnoticed. RCB had their chance to take the game over when they dismissed Du Plessis and Gaikwad in consecutive overs but Rayudu and Moeen Ali mended another partnership quite effortlessly leaving RCB way behind victory. Meanwhile, earlier in the match, CSK decimated the whole RCB batting lineup just when they got Kohli out.
Hits and flops
Virat Kohli – The Indian captain was struggling to find his lost Midas touch. He had a good record against CSK and came back to form with a half-century.
Devdutt Padikkal – The 21-year-old has become a serious threat to every bowling department. He could destroy any bowler on his day and CSK was in big trouble at the start of the innings to dismiss him.
Dwayne Bravo – 38 years old and Bravo is still doing stuff. The figures of 3 for 24 from 4 overs had a deadly effect on the RCB batting line-up.
All CSK batsmen – A good day at office altogether for the yellow army. Every batsman played sensibly and reached their goal together with ease.
AB de Villiers – The South African stalwart is yet to return to his best form.
Tim David – It could be added pressure for Tim. IPL is a completely different platform and Singapore international began his career in a bad way.
Tactical punts and fails
- Holding Suresh Raina to 5th position benefitted the whole CSK batting. Raina is weak against pacers and when he is going through a rotten form, it is good to play him against comfortable bowlers.