Spinners restrict RCB to 173-8 after good start

Right through his captaincy career, MS Dhoni has been applauded and celebrated for his reading of the game, and sensing opportunities. Leading Chennai Super Kings against the Royal Challengers Bangalore at the MCA Stadium here on Wednesday, Dhoni once again showed his awareness to the situation with some clever use of his spinners. And to their credit, Dhoni’s spinners responded brilliantly. Maheesh Theekshana (3-27), Moeen Ali (2-28) and Ravindra Jadeja (0-20) bowled well on a pitch that was gripping a bit to restrict the RCB to 173-8, having scored at nine and half runs per over in the Powerplay.

It was only due to some powerful hitting from Mahipal Lomror (42) and Dinesh Karthik (26*) that RCB managed to put a challenging total on board. But the 12 overs of spin costing 75 runs and getting five wickets was a clear highlight for the CSK team. At the time of going to press,  CSK were 72-2 in nine overs.

At 57 for no loss at the end of the Powerplay, RCB had set a perfect launching pad for a big total. That’s where the Dhoni-spinners show began. He brought on Ravindra Jadeja from one end in the seventh over, and Moeen from the other end the next over. Moeenremoved RCB skipper Faf du Plessis in his first over and then clean bowled a patchy Virat Kohli in his third.

Some indecisive running cost Glenn Maxwell his wicket in between. Sensing that there is an important little period to be won here, Dhoni bowled Jadeja and Moeen unchanged for their respective full spells, Something that is not seen very often in T20 cricket. Between them, Jadeja and Moeen bowled eight overs on the trot, conceding just 48 runs.

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