IPL 2019: Reason why MS Dhoni refused to give strike to Dwayne Bravo in the penultimate over

IPL 2019: Reason why MS Dhoni refused to give strike to Dwayne Bravo in the penultimate over

Dhoni took the onus upon himself and almost pulled off an unthinkable in the end.

MS Dhoni
MS Dhoni. (Photo: Kuntal Chakrabarty/IANS)

MS Dhoni almost single-handedly took the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) to the victory over Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in their last encounter in Bengaluru on Sunday. He scored 84* in just 48 balls and even scored 24 runs out of 26 needed in the last over, but CSK lost the match by 1 run.

Parthiv Patel ran Shardul Thakur out off the last ball when two runs were needed and RCB lived to see another day in the tournament. CSK had found themselves struggling for runs at one point when the team was 28/4 and then Dhoni took charge and along with Rayudu, Dwayne Bravo and others, took the equation to 26 runs in the final over. He almost pulled off the impossible by hitting 24 runs in Umesh Yadav’s first five balls only to miss the target agonisingly.

Dhoni declines a single

Despite CSK needing runs like oxygen, in the penultimate over, MS Dhoni refused to take singles on three consecutive balls to Bravo. He kept the strike to himself rather than exposing Bravo, who had walked in just then. Dhoni was asked about this in the post-match presentation as many felt that Bravo is no mug with the bat and could’ve gone for the big shots.

“As I had played so many deliveries, I could afford to take that risk because a lot of runs were needed. I think in 10 or 12 deliveries, we needed something close to 40 runs or 36 runs or something like that, which meant a lot of boundaries were needed,” Dhoni said.

The CSK skipper further explained the nature of the pitch and how it would’ve been tough for the new batsman to go for big shots. “It was still difficult at the end. It was slightly spongy (the pitch) and the new batsmen found it difficult. Boundaries were needed and yes we have lost by one run but at the same time, we have to see what if there were few dot balls and whether we could have got those extra boundaries or not,” the veteran added.

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