A dream spell from pace bowler Deepak Chahar at Wankhede Stadium ensured that Chennai Super Kings open their account in IPL 2021 with an emphatic win against Punjab Kings. After being set a target of meagre 107 runs by Punjab, CSK managed to win the game by six wickets.
MS Dhoni opted to field after winning the toss. After Thursday’s splendid bowling performance, it was no brainer for CSK to bowl first and restrict Punjab as lower as possible. The thought process and decision to bowl were immediately justified as Chahar managed to dismiss Mayank Agarwal with an unplayable out-swinging delivery.
Agarwal was quickly followed by KL Rahul as a mix-up between him and Chris Gayle made sure that Ravindra Jadeja could flex his fielding by hitting the stumps at the striker’s end. Gayle and Nicholas Pooran also fell prey to Chahar’s clever seam-up bowling as Punjab was reduced to 19/4 in five overs.
Last game’s hero Deepak Hooda could not survive long on the pitch as Chahar completed his spell with his wicket and maiden. The Indian pace bowler ended up with career-best IPL figures of 4/13. Shahrukh Khan was the only lone ranger in Punjab’s batting lineup as he played fighting innings of 47 runs, but no assistance from the other end meant that Punjab managed only 106 runs in 20 overs.
CSK started the chase slowly and lost Ruturaj Gaikwad in the powerplay. However, Moeen Ali and Faf du Plessis batted sensibly to make sure that CSK is in control of the outcome of the game. Ali was eventually dismissed after scoring 46 runs. Suresh Raina and Ambati Rayudu were also dismissed cheaply, but Du Plessis remained unbeaten on runs to help CSK win the game by six wickets. This huge win helped CSK to boost their net run rate and climb up the table. Meanwhile, Punjab Kings’ batting lineup got a reality check after starting IPL 2021 with victory on Monday.
Punjab Kings: 106/8 (Shahrukh Khan 47(36), Jhye Richardson 15(22), Deepak Chahar (4/13), Sam Curran (1/12))
Chennai Super Kings: 107/4 (Moeen Ali 46(31), Faf du Plessis 36(33), Mohammed Shami (2/21), Arshdeep Singh (1/7)
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