M.S. Dhoni did what he does best and almost pulled off a miraculous run-chase, prompting Virat Kohli to go through a lot of emotions as Royal Challengers Bangalore beat Chennai Super Kings by one run.
CSK skipper Dhoni’s scintillating 48-ball unbeaten 84 went in vain as his side failed to cross the line by just one run in a edge-of-the-seat contest against RCB at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium here on Sunday night.
Chasing a modest 162, CSK were reduced to 28/4 before Dhoni forged a crucial 59-run partnership with Ambati Rayudu and then kept the game alive with some lusty blows enroute another half-century.A
The former India captain kept his side in the hunt by hitting Saini for 10 runs before clobbering Umesh for 24 runs in the final five deliveries as it looked like Chennai will once again clinch a last-ball thriller.
However, Dhoni failed to collect the much-needed two runs off the final delivery as Bangalore kept their play-off hopes alive, winning their third game out of the 10 matches they have played so far.
“A whole lot of emotion. We were outstanding with the ball until the 19th over mark. Defending 160 on that sort of pitch and the amount of dew we had was an outstanding effort. On the last ball, that was the last thing I would’ve expected to happen. Feels good to win a game by a small margin. We’ve lost a couple by small margins. MS did what he does best and he gave us all a massive scare,” Kohli said after the game.
“In the first six overs, we thought the ball wasn’t coming onto the bat that much. Parthiv (Patel) and AB (de Villiers) started to rebuild. At the halfway mark we thought 175 would’ve been a very good total on this pitch. We thought we were 15 short,” Kohli opined.
Patel’s (53 off 37) half-century followed by Moeen Ali’s quick 16-ball 26 propelled Bangalore to 161/7.
Kohli said their bowlers pitched the ball in the right areas and that eventually paid off.
“We thought their bowlers didn’t make us play enough on the front foot. And if we pitch the ball in the right areas enough, we’ll get wickets in the powerplay which proved to be the case.”
Chennai were off to the worst possible start as they lost opener Shane Watson (5) and Suresh Raina (0) with just six runs on board, thanks to pacer Dale Steyn’s blows on successive deliveries in the very first over.
Steyn was at his lethal best, returning figures of 2/29. RCB kept their slim chances of making the playoffs alive with the win and next take on Kings XI Punjab next on April 24.