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Saturday, Oct 19, 2019

IPL 2018: Chennai Super Kings fret over lack of firepower in bowling ahead of Delhi Daredevils clash

Chennai Super Kings host Delhi Daredevils in their adopted home in Pune on in the IPL 2018 on Monday.

cricket Updated: Apr 29, 2018 15:24 IST
Rajesh Pansare
Rajesh Pansare
Hindustan Times, Pune
Chennai Super Kings will take on Delhi Daredevils in IPL 2018 on Monday.
Chennai Super Kings will take on Delhi Daredevils in IPL 2018 on Monday.(AFP)

The match against Mumbai Indians on Saturday went down to the wire, but the Chennai Super Kings bowlers never looked threatening and that maybe a cause for concern as they prepare to face a rejuvenated Delhi Daredevils on Monday.

Mumbai paced their innings well, didn’t take risks and crossed the line with ease. The turning points were over No 18 and 19 in which Mumbai amassed 32 runs and made sure there weren’t any jitters as they crossed the line.

READ | ‘Spate of limited-over cricket formats killing player satisfaction’

The Chennai bowlers tried but came up short against the Mumbai batsmen. Even skipper MS Dhoni agreed in the post-match presentation that the bowlers could have fared better.

“Mumbai Indians bowled well in the middle overs. You need pace on this wicket, they bowled back of length, so it wasn’t coming on. If you have pace, you can push the batsmen back. Playing cross-batted shots wasn’t easy. Choice of deliveries could’ve been better from our bowlers,” said a dejected Dhoni as Chennai suffered their second loss of the season.

They also lost Deepak Chahar, who did a good job while opening the bowling, for two weeks with a pulled hamstring. That reduces the fast bowling options as the only other recognised Indian pacer is Shardul Thakur.

The overseas options are Lungi Ngidi, who returned on Saturday from his father’s funeral in South Africa, Mark Wood and David Willey.

It will be interesting to see if Dhoni persists with a three-pronged spin attack or adds firepower to his arsenal against the Daredevils, who will be pumped up after a convincing win over Kolkata Knight Riders in their last match.

READ | IPL 2018: Chennai Super Kings still getting used to ‘home’ ground in Pune, says Stephen Fleming

On a Pune pitch that assists bowlers ready to go the extra yard, as shown by Jasprit Bumrah on Saturday, there is not much firepower in Chennai’s bowling at the moment. Dwayne Bravo, Shane Watson and Thakur are not among the fastest and depend on guile to outsmart batsmen.

Chennai would also re-think their death bowling strategy where they are heavily dependent on Bravo to curtail the run flow. Thakur has been used with the West Indian but hasn’t been consistent. Bravo will sometimes go for runs, like against Knight Riders when Andre Russell went berserk, so Chennai should find a partner to support him.

Coach Stephen Fleming tried to play down the inconsistency in the death overs. “We have worked hard on getting his (Shardul’s) planning right in the death overs. That’s still a work in progress. You also have to look that most teams are struggling to bowl in the death because the hitting is so good. There is no better evidence of it than our last few games and the way we have been batting. So, it’s a tough skill and it’s getting harder,” said the New Zealander.

First Published: Apr 29, 2018 15:16 IST

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