Chennai Super Kings 107 for 4 (Ali 46, du Plessis 36*, Shami 2-21, ) beat Punjab Kings 106 for 8 (Shahrukh 47, Chahar 4-13) by six wickets
MS Dhoni playing his 200th match for Chennai Super Kings on Friday, couldn't ask for a better game. After restricting KL Rahul led Punjab to just 107 runs in the first innings, Faf du Plessis (36*) and Moeen Ali (46) guide CSK to open their account.
It was a perfect game for the three-time champions. The Yellow Army took the early breakthroughs in the powerplay, fielded well and later chased down the total without much fuss.
Losing the toss didn’t help the Punjab Kings, who endured one of the worst starts in the history of the tournament. Losing first 5 wickets under powerplay. After registering a win in their first game, the Kings have been brought to the ground by MS Dhoni and Co, courtesy of a sensational opening Spell from Deepak Chahar (4/13).
Here’s a look at three major talking points in the match-
Deepak Chahar’s (4-1-13-4) sensational opening spell:
Deepak Chahar had a bad outing in the last game against Delhi Capitals. For Chennai to make a comeback, Chahar's spell at the start of the innings was always going to be crucial. The pitch offered bounce and movement at the start and the Indian pacer made full use of that against PBKS.
He made sure he bowls full and doesn’t go short of a length. On his fourth ball of the first over, he bowled an absolute peach of a delivery which swung away after pitching to hit the top of off-stumps. Mayank Agarwal (0) had no other answer to that. No one would have, to be honest.
This was followed by Chris Gayle (10) getting completely deceived by a slower ball. Chahar used his variations perfectly and kept the batsmen guessing. He then bowled a short-ball to Nicholas Pooran (0) which surprised him completely as he pulled it straight to the man at fine leg. MS Dhoni decided to complete Chahar’s quota in his first spell only and gave him the fourth over as well. He reaped reward in the form of Deepak Hooda’s wicket as Punjab Kings were left in all sorts of trouble at 26 for 5 inside 7 overs.
Deepak Chahar impressive spell helped him record the best figures of his IPL career. He finished with 4 for 13 in 4 overs.
Shahrukh Khan – the potential find for Punjab Kings
Before the start of the IPL, Punjab Kings head coach, Anil Kumble heaped praise on the new recruit, Shah Rukh Khan, while comparing him to Kieron Pollard. On Friday, fans got to see his range of hitting. From 26 for 5, Shahrukh Khan helped Punjab reach 106 in the end.
He batted with the lower-order while making sure he plays till the end. It was a mature knock from the debutant who also showcased his big-hitting skills. Shahrukh scored 47 off just 36 balls, a knock which was laced with 4 fours and 2 sixes. From what we saw on Friday, Shahrukh Khan could be a find for Punjab this season and is one for the future.
Ravindra Jadeja’s brilliance on the field
Ravindra Jadeja is unarguably the best fielder in the world right now. His rocket-arm throws are heart-warming. Over the years, Jadeja has shown his brilliance on the field on numerous occasions and today was also one of those days.
The first incident of Jadeja's brilliance came in the third over. Chris Gayle's had poked Chahar's delivery to the backward point. It wasn’t one of the best decision for KL Rahul to sneak a single when the fielder running towards the ball is Ravindra Jadeja. The CSK all-rounder had only one stump to aim at but that was enough for him. In a single motion, he picked the ball and hit the stump to send the skipper back to the pavilion.
It was followed by Chris Gayle’s wicket, courtesy of a brilliant diving catch from Jaddu. Chahar bowled a knuckle-ball which Gayle failed to pick. The southpaw sliced it to the backward point only to see Jadeja diving to his right to complete the catch.
Besides, he made a couple of brilliant saves off his own bowling. Jadeja’s contribution on the field was massive today, given that it involved two big wickets of Chris Gayle and KL Rahul.
Read Here: IPL 2021: Dhawan-Shaw blitz blows away CSK
Questions To Be Answered
CSK opener, Rituraj Gaekwad returned with low scores in the two games that CSK have played so far. CSK failed to make decent starts from the opening pair. With Robin Uthappa waiting in the wings, will CSK replace Rituraj with Uthappa in the next game?
With what we have seen in the first two games, Punjab’s batting looks weak after the top four. Ahead of the next game against Delhi, should they add a proper all-rounder in Moises Henriques in the eleven?
What Lies Ahead For Both Sides
After registering a clinical win against Punjab, Chennai Super Kings wouldn’t like to tinker too much to the squad. They would be full of confidence ahead of their next game against Rajasthan Royals.
Punjab would be wary of their next opponent in Delhi Capitals and thus will look to make a strong eleven before they hit the ground running on Sunday.
MS Dhoni made his 200th appearance for Chennai Super Kings against Punjab Kings on Friday. With that, he becomes the first player to play 200 games for the successful franchise.
Deepak Chahar achieved his best records in IPL. He returned with figures of 4 for 13 in 4 overs against.
After running out KL Rahul in the first innings, Ravindra Jadeja has now affected the most run-outs (22) in the history of IPL.