Twitter Reactions: Robin Uthappa and MS Dhoni take fans down the memory lane to give vintage vibes in DC vs CSK Qualifier 1

Twitter Reactions: Robin Uthappa and MS Dhoni take fans down the memory lane to give vintage vibes in DC vs CSK Qualifier 1

MS Dhoni hit the winning runs to smash an unbeaten 18 off 6 balls and take his team to the final.

MS Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja
MS Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

“HE IS THE BEST FINISHER.” He still is! MS Dhoni has done it a million times in his career and despite not having the greatest IPL season, he backed himself in crunch situation in the first qualifier. And there were no surprises that he delivered, for the umpteenth time in his career. Well, it was not Dhoni alone that chased down the total but it was the half-centuries from Uthappa and Gaikwad who played the crucial role early on for their skipper to ‘FINISH IT OFF’.

Earlier, DC were propelled in the powerplay with a powerful show from Prithvi Shaw. The man was elegant in his shot-making and took on the CSK bowlers in the first six overs. He hadn’t set the stage on fire in the UAE leg until now but chose the perfect match to show his class yet again. A 27-ball fifty neutralised the early loss of Shikhar Dhawan for DC and the table toppers were up and running.

However, they lost their way a bit in the next four overs. Shreyas Iyer’s poor run continued while the ploy to send Axar Patel at number four didn’t work for Delhi. Moreover, Shaw’s inside out shot to Ravindra Jadeja was snaffled superbly by Faf du Plessis to leave the Capitals reeling at 80/4 in the 11th over. They were playing a batsman short on the day and it was important then for Rishabh Pant and Shimron Hetmyer to rebuild the innings.

The duo just did that while also upping the ante at the right time. They punished poor deliveries and kept churning out to keep the team’s hopes of posting a big total high. Pant batted well at the crunch situation to score an unbeaten 51 off 35 balls while Hetmyer scored 37 off 24 balls to propel DC to a commendable total of 172 runs for the loss of five wickets in their 20 overs.

The thrilling chase

CSK needed a good start in the chase. But they lost the in-form opener Faf du Plessis in the first over itself with Anrich Nortje breaching his defense. However, this was the only success DC had for the next 13-odd overs. Robin Uthappa, playing his third game of the season, middled the ball at will to leave the opposition stunned. The free flowing shots from his bat reminisced the times when Uthappa was looking in great touch.

Gaikwad struggled at the start but kept rotating the strike with his partner batting well. The duo complimented each other nicely to keep the Men in Yellow ahead in the chase. Uthappa, the veteran, showed his class at the right time for his team. DC were desperate for a wicket and the 110-run excellent partnership was finally broken by Tom Curran, playing his first match of the UAE leg.

The England pacer also snaffled Shardul Thakur in the same over and Ambati Rayudu got run-out in the very next over. The match was hanging in the balance with CSK sliding from 113/1 to 119/4 and the pressure mounted even with Gaikwad set having scored a half-century.

The equation came down to 35 off the last three overs and Gaikwad, along with Moeen Ali, managed to churn out 11 runs in Anrich Nortje’s over. However, the CSK opener was holed out in the deep off the first ball of the 19th over to turn the game on its head. But the biggest surprise of the game was yet to arrive. MS Dhoni decided to take matters in his own hands with 24 needed off 11 balls despite struggling throughout the season with the bat.

Well, the veteran had played in these situations a million times and despite missing a couple of slower balls, he connected one to launch one in the stands. And the maximum off his bat got the nerves going in the DC camp. With 13 runs needed off the final over, Rishabh Pant went with Tom Curran and the latter dismissed Moeen off the first ball.

Dhoni came on strike then and read the bowler’s mind perfectly. He perfectly read the slower short delivery and hammered it over the covers fielder for a boundary. And when it comes one on one, MS Dhoni is the master of it and the pressure was clearly telling on Curran’s face. A wide followed and then the ‘Best Finisher in the World’ perfectly threaded the field to hit the winning boundary for his team and help CSK storm into its ninth final.

Here’s how Twitter reacted: