"Oh no, not again!" This is what the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) captain MS Dhoni would have screamed from inside when his bowlers couldn't stop leaking runs against Rajasthan Royals (RR). The bowlers once again let Dhoni down with their poor display of death over bowling.
Chennai put up a target of 177 runs in their 20 overs and the 36-year-old believed it was a par or more than par target. But the men-in-yellow failed to defend it. Their bowling has been a big concern this season and the skipper knows it very well.
No wonder, Dhoni was clear about the poor performance by his bowlers. Speaking in the post-match interview, Dhoni said that the bowlers weren't up to the mark because of which CSK had to face a 4-wicket defeat against Rajasthan.
"I think it is the bowling. We had to bowl one particular length and the bowlers were instructed on what they need to bowl and where they need to bowl. That back of the length was a difficult one to hit. We at least got hit 4-5 boundaries off full length.
"What really happens is once you are told what to bowl, you need to be bowling to that area. They need to commit and execute. It is not the planning but the execution that goes haywire," said Dhoni.
"That was a par score or a par plus score. I think the bowlers let us down to some extent," he added.
Jos Buttler was toying with the Chennai bowlers, who looked helpless bowling at him. RR isn't a batting heavy side and one would expect the Chennai franchise to defend an above par total on a slow deck.
CSK had to defend 12 runs in last overs when Dwayne Bravo's slower ones didn't work out for him and he conceded it in just 5 balls.
Dhoni thinks they have the best set of 11 players. But just need to execute their plans on the field. "Looking at the XI that we have on the field, we did well in the field. We can say we can get better, but with the players we have, this is the best we can get."
Chennai is second on the points table with 7 wins in 11 matches. They need one more win to ensure a play-offs spot and a couple of wins will seal their place in top 2.
"It is important to start delivering when it comes to the planning part. You just don't want to qualify into the knockout stages, you have to win games. You also need to adjust to what length to bowl and how to bowl," said the 36-year-old.
Chennai's next three games are against Sunrisers Hyderabad, Delhi Daredevils and Kings XI Punjab respectively.