Chennai Super Kings (CSK) captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni praised Trinidadian all-rounder Dwayne Bravo for his match-winning performance against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) on Friday.
Bravo’s excellent spell with the ball restricted RCB to a total that CSK chased down with ease. He took 3/24 from his four overs, which included two from the final over of the RCB innings.
Batting first, RCB looked set for a big score thanks to the opening pair of Devdutt Padikkal and Virat Kohli, who each hit fifty in a 111-run partnership. However, following their dismissals, CSK came back strongly to keep them to 156/6.
After winning the game by 6 wickets, Dhoni highlighted Bravo’s improved fitness and said he calls the latter his “brother”.
“He [Bravo] has turned up fit, that is a very good thing. And he is executing very well. I call him my brother. We always have the fight every year as to whether he needs to bowl so many slower balls or not,” Dhoni said during the post-match presentation.
“I said, ‘You do it to bluff the batsmen but now everyone knows Bravo is known for the slower deliveries. So why not bowl six different deliveries, whether it’s yorker or length. Let them be surprised by saying, ‘Oh, he didn’t bowl the slower one.”
The CSK captain also said that he had thought about bringing Moeen Ali into the attack but changed his mind. Instead, he handed the ball to Bravo.
“We were worried about the dew, so whenever there’s chances of dew, we want to bat second. They got off to a good start but after ninth over wicket slowed down. You still had to bowl tight, and Jadeja’s spell was important with Padikkal batting from one end. After that Bravo, Josh, Shardul, Deepak were brilliant. It’s always on the back of your mind which bowler can be effective over here,” Dhoni said.
“I had told Moeen before drinks that he would be bowling soon, but then I decided Bravo should bowl. The more you delay Bravo, the more difficult it is since he will end up bowling four straight overs in these difficult conditions.”
RCB set a 157-run target for CSK. In reply, Dhoni & Co won the game with 11 balls to spare to move up in the Indian Premier League 2021 points table.