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Chennai, April 13 – Chennai Super Kings captain MS Dhoni asked the batters of his team to take “ownership”, after his side suffered a three-run loss against Rajasthan Royals in an IPL 2023 game here on Wednesday night, saying that they needed a bit more strike rotation during the middle overs of the run-chase.
Chasing a target of 176 for victory, CSK were well placed at 78 for 1 in the tenth over. But Royals’ spinners bowled beautifully and choked CSK batters, reducing them to 113 for 6 by the end of the 15th.
Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja nearly pulled off an improbable win with some fireworks in the end but it proved a little too late. The match ended with CSK one hit away from victory having needed 54 from 18 balls at one stage — but the Super Kings captain suggested after the match that it needn’t have come down to that situation in the first place.
“I think [we lost it] in the middle [overs while batting], we needed a bit more strike rotation,” Dhoni said at the post-match presentation.
“I don’t think there was a lot [of help] for the spinners. Yes, they have experienced spinners, so they bowled very well. They were bowling the right length, but I felt in that period you have [we had] too many dot balls.
If the wicket is slow, if it’s stopping and turning, then I can understand, but with the set batsman and the new batsman going in, I don’t think it was that difficult. So I think the ownership needs to come from the batsmen,” he added.
Asked about his batting strategy in the death overs, Dhoni said that he waits for the bowler to commit the mistake and backs his strength.
“You see the field, see the bowler and what the bowler is trying to do, after that just stand still and wait for them to commit the mistake, if they bowl in good areas then good luck to them. I would wait for it and that is something which has worked for me, you need to back your strength and my strength is to hit straight,” the CSK skipper said.
The 41-year old also was pleased with his bowlers’ effort.
“There was a bit of dew and once the ball went to the outfield it became easier for the batters. Overall I was very happy with the bowlers. I really didn’t know it was my 200th (game as CSK skipper) and milestones don’t really matter for me, it is about how you’re performing and the results,” Dhoni concluded.