Abu Dhabi, Sept. 19: Chennai Super Kings put up a clinical show to win the opener of the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) against defending champions Mumbai Indians on Saturday.
The tournament, being played after a coronavirus-forced delay, is being held across three venues in UAE. The Chennai team avenged their last season’s final loss in the opener in Abu Dhabi and CSK skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni stated that his team’s tremendous 'experience’ paid off during the win.
Man-of-the-match Ambati Rayudu’s 115-run partnership with Faf du Plessis helped CSK win the opener. Prior to that the bowlers put up a good show with the ball to restrict Mumbai to 162.
Speaking at the post-match presentation ceremony, CSK skipper, Dhoni said, “The experience pays off, everyone talks about it. You get it only after you play a lot of games.
“300 ODIs is a dream for anybody to play and when you put an XI on the field, you need a good mix of youngsters and experienced players. You need the experienced players to guide the youngsters on and off the field. The young players get 60-70 days with the seniors in the IPL," added the skipper.
Talking about the takeaways from the first game of the 13th edition, Dhoni said, "We may practice enough but when you go on the field you need to assess the conditions and give it your best. It took us time for the bowlers to find the right length on this pitch. Plenty of positives but still plenty of areas for us to improve.
"In the second half there is a bit of movement till the dew sets in. If you don't lose wickets early, you have the upper hand. These are the learnings. Rayudu had a wonderful partnership with Faf. Most of us are retired so luckily no injuries as well," signed off the captain.
Meanwhile, MI skipper Rohit Sharma expressed his disappointment that the defending champions failed to carry on the initial momentum that they had set.
Following their opening day loss in Abu Dhabi, Rohit said, "None of our batsmen carried on for us, like du Plessis and Rayudu did for CSK. I think we were 85 in the first 10 overs. Credit to the CSK bowlers, they bowled well at the end to pull back things. Something for us to learn. Still early days. We all want to start really well, it's crucial in this tournament where momentum is important.
Talking about his takeaways from the game, the skipper said, “Few things for us to learn from this game, we did make a few mistakes. Hopefully we'll rectify those and come out smarter in the next game.
"We need to adapt to the pitches, it got better with the dew coming. You need to hit the gaps and focus on that part of the game. The opposition can tie you down, it's all about understanding what we need to do," signed off the Mumbai skipper.
The Chennai Super Kings will take on Rajasthan Royals in their next match, while the Mumbai Indians will face the Kolkata Knight Riders.
(With inputs from PTI)