Chennai Super Kings (CSK) head coach Stephen Fleming was on Sunday (15 April) in awe for Captain MS Dhoni and his boys for their incredible effort against the Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) in Mohali.
However, KXIP’s bowler Mohit Sharma snatched the game from the hands of Men in Yellow in the last thriller over, losing by just 4-runs thanks to Chris Gayle’s blistering knock of 63 off 33 deliveries (4 six and 7 fours) at PCA Stadium. But Dhoni’s knock of not out 79 off 44 balls drew praise from his coach.
Fleming further said that Gayle’s knock and Sharma’s good yorkers cost them the Mohali game, saying they need to get some wickets and create pressure in the middle, but he is proud of the team’s effort.
As per reports in Hindustan Times, Fleming told reporters, “We were hit hard by Gayle. He played really well. We thought we might be able to pick him up with him being a little bit rusty. We did incredibly well to restrict the score to somewhere under 200. The second half of our bowling during the innings was very good. We were able to get some wickets and create pressure. A score of 196 is still very high, but it’s a lot lower than what it could have been. I’m proud of the effort.”
Former New Zealander further explained, “During the chase, we just hung in and as good as Gayle was at the start of their innings, Dhoni was good at the back end of ours. We were only one hit away from stealing another win. A great game of cricket, that ebbed and flowed, and two really good batting performances from two senior players. When you’re chasing, you get certainty in an uncertain game. So you can manage your risk, like you saw MS (Dhoni) managing his almost to perfection. It was a couple of good Yorkers from Mohit Sharma that denied us a win.”
The CSK coach has also stressed on the need of some rectifications in the side. Fleming signed off by saying, “We’ve got to reassess that and make sure that we have the right combination. We’re not too far away. There are areas where we can improve. We have two wins out of three with injuries and a bit of drama surrounding our home; we will probably take that.”