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IPL 2020: Rayudu’s rise and a masterstroke by Dhoni to seal first win for CSK

The 13th season of Indian Premier League has finally begun. Chennai Super Kings won the first match of the league against the defending champions Mumbai Indians by five wickets with four balls remaining. Dhoni also recorded 100th win as a CSK captain with this victory.

Dhoni’s masterstroke
Sam Curran as a replacement of Dwayne Bravo raised a few eyebrows when CSK announced their final playing XI. But the man in question went on to play like a genuine all-rounder in the first IPL 2020 match. He opened the bowling and was one of the more economical bowlers for his side, as he scalped the wicket of dangerous-looking Quinton de Kock conceding just 28 runs. Later, he was pushed up in the order by Mahendra Singh Dhoni when CSK required some quickfire runs during chase.

Curran came, scored 18 off just six balls including one boundary and two maximums and almost took CSK to the finishing line. Yet again, Dhoni’s masterstroke changed the fate of a game.

Rayudu proves a point
Ambati Rayudu had made it to the headlines during India’s 2019 World Cup campaign for all the wrong reasons. After the controversial period, it was the chance for Rayudu to prove himself. He did it and how! Chennai Super Kings were reduced to 6/2 within two overs when Rayudu joined Faf du Plessis. The chance of successful chase was looking slimmer but Rayudu rose to the occasion and delivered a man-of-the-match performance.

He scored a brilliant 71 off 48 balls and changed the outlook of the game for CSK. His innings was decorated with six boundaries and three maximums. The way he batted at No. 4 speaks for his mettle as a middle-order mainstay yet again.

South-African trio
Faf du Plessis made up for Suresh Raina as the No. 3 batsman of Chennai Super Kings. Once the two openers were gone, the middle-order kept the chance of CSK alive in the game. Faf du Plessis provided support to Rayudu when needed and in the course went on to record his own individual half-century as well. Although Rayudu left in 16th over, du Plessis remained there till the end. He ended with 58* off just 44 balls.

Earlier in the day, Lungi Ngidi was another South African who showed up for CSK. Ngidi (3/38) ran through the lower middle order of MI and ended as highest wicket-taker of the match. And let’s not forget the modest contribution by Quinton de Kock. The MI opener showed the glimpse of his batting with a 20-ball 33 that included five boundaries.

A Masters in Mass Communication is following her passion for cricket through writing. Primarily a PR person who loves to write absolutely anything and everything about cricket.

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