Just CSK things — choke up the middle overs with spin, cause a flutter in the opposition at the death, start off big in the powerplay, and then remain clinical. It may’ve taken them 12 games to arrive, but at least they did. Almost as if giving us a throwback, a reminder of the times that their 2020 compaign just didn’t have, they’ve bossed RCB around here. This is the pitch they purchased their team for, slow, sluggish, dusty. And it’s their bowlers who set it up. Finch couldn’t get going once again, Kohli and AB took their time, kept knocking it around, but the final florish never came. 146 wasn’t going to challenge. And Faf made sure it didn’t, going against his usual character of trying to anchor it out. Gaikwad turned up finally, justifying his over-par List A credentials, and looked confident for a change. He made sure the tempo set in the powerplay never fell, and Bangalore hardly made sure he didn’t. Stick around, we’ll get you the presentations ..
Virat Kohli | Losing skipper: What you saw in the second innings wasn’t a true representation of how the pitch was. They bowled stump to stump. I don’t think we got a ball to drive when we batted. Their spinners kept it tight too. 140+ is a competitive total on that pitch, we were targetting 150. I thought we still could have bowled change of pace and the odd bouncer. We weren’t expressive enough. We let batsmen dictate stuff. You have to be prepared on a given day to do well. All sides have good players, it’s about how you come out onto the park on that particular day. We are playing really good cricket and you have to accept you will lose games here and there.
MS Dhoni | Winning skipper: This was one of the perfect games. Everything went to plan. The execution was there and we were able to pick wickets regularly to restrict them to a total that’s slightly below par on a wicket like this. A lot depends on how the players are performing and how the wicket is. This was definitely on the slower side and the spinners have done a very good job. In the middle overs we have struggled to take wickets. In the games we have gone for runs, it was big in the death overs. That could be one of the reasons why we didn’t do well this season. We haven’t been consistent with the bat, today the start was very good. Rutu (Gaikwad) played really well, backed himself to play the shots that he would play than worry about big shots. Smiling does make a difference. You do quite a few things, show a bit more emotion (on the happier side) so that the guys feel a bit more confident and relaxed. If you don’t do well, it does hurt and so you amplify a few emotions so that the guys don’t leave the games. We dont really have a chance to make it to the play-offs, leave the mathematical part of it. But three, three and a half hours out there can get really painful. You have to tell them – let’s go out there and give it your best shot and enjoy the game whatever the result might be. If you aren’t out there enjoying, it becomes very painful. But the boys have always given their 100%. If we had seen this (on Ruturaj performing well) in the second or the third game we could have got a glimpse. But this year has been tough on Rutu as well. He batted in Chennai, then Covid, the extra quarantine took precious time away from him. Even in the last game you saw, it happens in cricket, you face the best bowlers and you nick one. You have to help yourself, and when you are out there you have to fight it out with your mind. I felt he did really well after the first single he took and the first hit; he kept getting more and more comfortable with himself.
Ruturaj Gaikwad is the man of the match.