Chennai Super Kings (CSK) captain MS Dhoni lamented the lack of execution from his bowlers, as the IPL 2021 table-toppers failed to defend a target of 219 runs against Mumbai Indians (MI) on Saturday.
Despite slumping to 81 for 3 in their chase, MI recovered to beat CSK by four wickets in Delhi, as Kieron Pollard smashed an unbeaten 87 off 34 balls. Bemoaning his team’s inability to defend a huge target, MS Dhoni said at the post-match press conference:
“It was a brilliant wicket. We knew it would be a close game, unless they (MI) lost too many wickets. The difference was the execution. How off we were when he it came to executing what we wanted to bowl. Without being too harsh on the bowlers, catches do help. We dropped catches at a crucial point.”
MS Dhoni added that the loss would not hurt CSK too much, as they are still top of the points table. MS Dhoni said in this regard:
“When you are at the top of the table, it doesn’t hurt a lot, but it is still a learning. Hopefully, the bowlers would execute better.”
When you are under the pump, you learn more: MS Dhoni
Despite the disappointing loss, MS Dhoni asserted that the spirit of the team was high and that they would take it one game at a time going forward.
“The wicket was good, and it was slightly easy to hit. The spirit of the team will be up. Of course it hurts, but in a tournament like this, you will win and lose quite a few close games. When you are under the pump, you learn more. Irrespective of where we are in the points table, we take one game at a time. We hardly ever focus where we are standing in the table. That’s always how it has been our way of going forward.”
After being sent into bat by MI, CSK posted a mammoth 218 for 4 on the board. Ambati Rayudu made a blazing 72 not out off only 27 balls, while Faf du Plessis (50) and Moeen Ali (58) also made key contributions.
Mumbai Indians, though, got home off the last ball, courtesy Pollard’s blitzkrieg. The MI all-rounder, who had earlier picked up two wickets in the game as well, smashed eight sixes as CSK lost a high-scoring thriller.