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Dhoni spoils Dhawan’s almost perfect comeback

cricket Updated: Apr 26, 2013 01:37 IST
Rohit Bhaskar
Rohit Bhaskar
Hindustan Times
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It's very difficult to be the villain of a T20 match after returning figures of 3-26 in four overs, but Amit Mishra had to face that ignominy after he dropped a MS Dhoni mishit off Dale Steyn before the India skipper had even opened his account.

The disgust could be seen when Mishra caught Ravindra Jadeja off the same bowler.

The leg-spinner grabbed a regulation catch at backward point and then threw the ball towards the leg-side boundary in frustration. That, however, mattered little.

Dhoni played his best innings of the season and single-handedly got CSK out of a tight situation, even making the world's best fast bowler, Dale Steyn, look ordinary.

Dhoni clobbered Steyn for three sixes as he struck a 67 off just 37 balls with 7 fours and 4 sixes and got the 15 runs that were required off the final over with two balls to spare, guiding the hosts to the top of the standings.

Solid start
Mike Hussey, in blistering form this season, continued from where he left off against the Rajasthan Royals and with partner M Vijay also coming good, CSK seemed to be cruising to victory.

However, after putting together 65 runs in 6.3 overs, Vijay departed, smartly stumped by wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock after misreading a Mishra delivery.

Hussey (45 - 28 b, 4x4, 2x6) fell next, again to the Mishra-de Kock combo, top-edging a delivery that lobbed into the gloves of the South African wicketkeeper.

Shikhar Dhawan (63 off45 balls; 10x4) overcame the pain barrier to provide the impetus the Sunrisers Hyderabad batting had lacked in his absence.

Even as wickets fell around him, the southpaw who returned after a month out due to a hand fracture, played his strokes freely and guided the visitors to 159/6.

Playing his first match since his sensational Test debut against Australia in Mohali, where he struck a 174-ball 187, Dhawan had to go off the field when he was on 44 after a Dwayne Bravo delivery crashed into his unmentionables and left him writhing in pain.

However, he returned at the fall of Darren Sammy's wicket with the score on 116-6 after 17.2 overs. With Ashish Reddy (36 off 16 balls; 2x4, 3x6) for company, Dhawan put on 43 runs off the final 2.4 overs.

For CSK, Mohit Sharma continued his impressive run this season and provided two crucial breakthroughs early, dismissing De Kock and Cameron White for 4 and 2 runs respectively.

R Ashwin was his usual miserly self and bowled a superb spell of 1-21 off his four overs.