Chennai Super Kings (CSK) captain MS Dhoni was not pleased with the effort of his batting unit after the four-timer winners suffered a defeat against defending champions Gujarat Titans in the first match of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Friday. Shubman Gill’s knock and Gujarat Titans batters’ collective performance overshadowed Ruturaj Gaikwad’s heroics as Gujarat Titans stood victorious over Chennai Super Kings by 5 wickets in the IPL 2023 opener at Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Friday.
Dhoni, who is known for his honest reviews of his team, admitted that the batters needed to do more. “We all knew there will be dew. We could have done a bit more with the batsman ship. Ruturaj (Gaikwad) was brilliant, he times the ball well and he’s a pleasure to watch. The way he picks his options, is pleasing to watch. I think it’s important for youngsters to step in,” Dhoni said at the post-match presentation.
The CSK captain praised IPL debutant Rajvardhan Hangargekar who took three wickets. “I think Raj (Hangargekar) has pace and he will get better with time. Think the bowlers will get better, a no-ball is something that’s in your control, so you need to work on that. I felt two left armers will be a better option so I went ahead with them. Shivam was an option, but I felt comfortable with the bowlers overall,” Dhoni said.
Coming to the match, Wriddhiman Saha and Shubman Gill fired on all cylinders right from the very first ball. Even though Saha lost his wicket in the last ball of the fourth over, he had already achieved the task he was asked to do. His knock of 25(16) laid the groundwork for the 179-run chase. Gill adopted a similar appraoch to Gaikward. Irrespective of what was happening on the other end, he continued to play aggressively. Sai Sudarshan came in and defined the true meaning of impact player. He replaced Kane Williamson in the 13th over, who injured himself after landing awkwardly on the ground.
Sudarshan supported Gill till the half of the second innings. His knock of 22(17) kept the pressure off GT. After Sudarshan’s wicket GT skipper, Hardik Pandya stepped in to keep the scoreboard ticking. However, Hardik lost his wicket to Ravindra Jadeja. Vijay Shankar’s knock of 27(21) kept Gujarat Titans in the game. Rahul Tewatia was given the freedom to play according to his own will. However, CSK had a plan for him that kept him silent for the most part of his innings.
After Vijay Shankar’s departure, Rashid Khan came in to change the course of the game. He sent the ball flying into the stands on his very first ball. On his second, he chipped the ball over the short third of the boundary. GT required eight in the final over. Tewatia finished off the game with a six and a four to hand GT their first victory of the IPL 2023 by successfully completing the 179-run chase.