Let’s say it: Intent’s finally arrived. It’s been a rare sight on the field with Chennai, but it’s taken them half their campaign to realize and accept they were going nowhere and hence bring out a new strategy. It started with the toss, with a shake up in their batting in the powerplay, went on with Dhoni going hard from the start and Jadeja lifting them to something over par with his cameo. SRH have been rather one-dimensional over the years with their processes — you know, the kind where they bat first, scoring par and then use their spinners to choke out the middle overs. CSK stole that strategy today. Although Warner fell early and Pandey fell to some unnecessary running, it was that middle phase where Jadeja and the two leggies squeezed in the dots, dried out boundaries and left a little too much a little too quickly for Williamson to be doing alone.
David Warner | Losing captain: The wicket was on the slower side, I think we needed an extra batter. We tried to take it deep. You got one big boundary, so it’s not easy. We have to go back to the drawing board and work on few areas. I thought 160 was the right total to go after, but anything above that was always going to be difficult. Having 6-7 bowlers in the team helps. It’s difficult to play against bowlers who can swing the ball. There’s always a challenge in the powerplay, but you have to take on the bowlers. We need to monitor the wickets in the upcoming games and select the team accordingly. I think with our team and the depth that we have, we’re always going to be one short either way. Things (in the points table) are always congested in the middle. You got to beat the best teams, to make it to the top. We’ll be facing the top teams in the next few days, so I’m up for the challenge and so are the other guys.
MS Dhoni | Winning captain : Ultimately what really matters is you getting two points. What T20s have shown is that there are a few games that don’t go your way and then there are some that go your way even when you haven’t earned it. Today I felt we did a very good job even in the batting. There was some purpose with the bat and the batsmen assessed the situation very well. With a total like 160, it all depends on the start you get in the first six overs. The fast bowlers did the job, the spinners came into play and it was one game that was as close to being perfect. It was a par score and I usually assess scores after the first six overs. If there are misfields in the first six overs then a par score becomes an under par score. A lot depended on the fast bowlers. I just told them to be expressive on the field and hit their areas.There are some two paced balls, some swing and some don’t swing, some get extra bounce. What was needed was good execution of the plans and that was done by the fast bowlers. To an extent, yes (these pitches help CSK). But we used an extra spinner because an Indian batter hasn’t done well for us. That’s why Sam Curran went up and it wasn’t fair on Jagadeesan as well to bat at seven or eight. Sam Curran is a complete cricketer for us. You need a seaming all-rounder, he plays the spinners well and he can give us those 15-45 runs. A good left armer is always good to have in the side. You keep wondering whether the ball would come in or leave the batsman. As the tournament progresses we’ll get more comfortable with the death bowling, which is why we kept Sam away from the death and Thakur and Bravo took over. We’ll get better. We need to think more about the process, the points table will take care of itself. We need to still see where the errors were in this game and what is important is to not brush anything under the carpet just because we won the game.
Ravindra Jadeja is the man of the match.