IPL 2021 DC vs CSK, Qualifier 1: Who won yesterday’s match?
Chennai Super Kings (CSK) booked their place in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 final, outsmarting Delhi Capitals (DC) by four wickets in Qualifier 1 in Dubai on Sunday. In a match where there seemed no clear winner till the very end, it was the experience and calmness of MS Dhoni that guided CSK home.
Ruturaj Gaikwad (70 off 50) and Robin Uthappa (63 off 44) set up the chase of 173 for CSK. Dhoni put the finishing touches by rolling back the years, and blazing his way to an unbeaten 18 off six balls.
CSK needed to get 13 in the last over bowled by Tom Curran. Dhoni slammed three fours to put CSK in the IPL 2021 final in grand style. After a short delivery was crashed over extra cover, Dhoni edged the next ball past the keeper. The winning runs came when the CSK captain pulled a short ball to deep square leg to set off celebrations in the Chennai camp.
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The in-form Anrich Nortje got DC off to the perfect start. He cleaned up the in-form Faf du Plessis (1) in the first over with a full delivery that beat the batter’s flick and crashed onto his stumps.
Uthappa, however, came in and took the attack to DC’s bowlers. Twenty runscame off the last over before the powerplay as the veteran batter took a liking to Avesh Khan. After clobbering a six over wide long on, Uthappa swung the next one over midwicket for four. A second six followed as Uthappa launched a length ball straight over the bowler’s head. The over ended with wide delivery getting slammed over mid-off for four. Uthappa brought up a fine half-century off 35 balls as CSK reached 81 for 1 at the halfway stage.
Gaikwad, who had been rather subdued until then, whacked Axar Patel for a six over a leaping Kagiso Rabada at long-on before hitting a four down the ground. Uthappa brought up the 100-run partnership by reverse-sweeping Ravichandran Ashwin for a four. Next ball, he skipped down the track, and whipped one over the bowler’s head for another boundary.
Curran (3 for 29) gave DC the massive breakthrough, getting Uthappa caught at long-on. The CSK batter mistimed his big hit, and Shreyas Iyer took a wonderfully composed catch. He avoided a collision with Axar Patel, tossed the ball up into the air, and completed the catch. In the same over, Gaikwad raised his fifty off 37 balls. However, Curran made it DC’s over, as Shardul Thakur, promoted in the order, hit the bowler down the throat of Iyer again.
Things got tougher for CSK, as Iyer ran out Ambati Rayudu (1) with a brilliant piece of fielding. Gaikwad lofted one towards long-on, from where Iyer fired in a solid throw to the bowler (Rabada), catching Rayudu well short on the second run.
With 35 needed off 18, Gaikwad slapped Nortje for two brilliant fours to keep CSK in the hunt. The first one was slammed past mid-off and the second, a full toss, scythed over backward point.
Avesh Khan sent back Gaikwad first ball off the penultimate over as the tired batter hit a low full-toss to deep midwicket, where Patel took a good tumbling catch. A four and a cracking six from Moeen Ali and MS Dhoni, respectively, left CSK 13 to get off the last over.
Moeen Ali (16) was caught off the first ball in the last over, but this was to be Dhoni’s day.
DC post 172 for 5 as Shaw, Pant slam fifties
DC posted an impressive 172 for 5 on the board after being sent into bat by CSK. DC opener Prithvi Shaw blasted 60 off 34, but they stumbled to 80 for 4. Captain Rishabh Pant (51 not out off 35) and Shimron Hetmyer (37 off 24) then featured in a fifth-wicket stand of 83 as DC recovered to get 170.
The first half of DC’s innings was all about Shaw going berserk at one end and wickets falling at the other. Shaw began by top-edging Josh Hazlewood for a four and a six in the second over. The third over, bowled by Deepak Chahar, went for 17 as Shaw crashed the CSK pacer for four fours. The first was inside edged and the second punched through point in style. The third boundary was flicked behind square and the fourth cut through point.
Hazlewood provided CSK with some much-needed relief when Shikhar Dhawan (7) edged one behind the wickets. Shaw continued to blossom, as he hit two sixes off Shardul Thakur. While the first one was whacked over deep midwicket, the second was clubbed over the bowler’s head. The DC opener had a lucky escape, as an edge off a slower bouncer hit Dhoni’s webbing and went to ground.
In the last over before the powerplay, DC lost Shreyas Iyer (1) when he got a leading edge trying to hit Josh Hazlewood across the line. The experiment to promote Axar Patel (10) failed, as he struggled to get the big hits. At the other end, Shaw raced to a 27-ball fifty. However, he perished soon after, lofting Ravindra Jadeja to long-off, leaving DC in a hole.
Pant and Hetmyer took their time to get settled, but ensured they did not throw their wickets away after they got their eyes in. In the 14th over, Hetmyer smashed Moeen Ali for a maximum past deep midwicket. The left-hander stood upright, and crunched crucial boundaries off Dwayne Bravo and Hazlewood before perishing to the former while attempting another big hit.
The DC captain smashed two one-handed sixes. The first came off Thakur in the 16th over when he launched a low full-toss over long-on. The second was against Bravo in the penultimate over, this time the left-hander clearing long-off. Thakur bowled a brilliant last over, conceding only eight. However, DC did well to cross 170.
IPL 2021 DC vs CSK Qualifier 1: Who was the Man of the Match?
Hazlewood impressed for CSK with the ball, getting the big scalps of Dhawan and Iyer. When CSK chased, Gaikwad and Uthappa hit brilliant fifties to keep their side ahead in the match.
For DC, opener Shaw hit a blazing 60, while captain Pant also contributed a fighting half-century. With the ball, Curran claimed three wickets, but could not stop the MS Dhoni onslaught.
However, it was CSK’s young opener Ruturaj Gaikwad, who was named the Man of the Match for his superb match-winning knock.
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