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After a rollicking comeback against Kings XI Punjab, Chennai Super Kings once stumbled against Kolkata Knight Riders at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium. Chasing 167 runs, the MS Dhoni-led side lost track in the death to fall short by 10 runs.

Chasing a moderate total, Faf du Plessis and Shane Watson gave Chennai Super Kings a rollicking start. They were 90 for one after 10 overs with Watson and Ambati Rayudu scoring heavily. But Kolkata Knight Riders bounced back on time to first remove Rayudu and Watson to have the three-time champions at 101 for three.

Chennai Super Kings lose points against Kolkata

The likes of Sunil Narine and Varun Chakravarthy did exceptionally well as Chennai Super Kings only managed to score 14 runs from 11-15 over. MS Dhoni and Sam Curran found it difficult to hit the boundaries at regular intervals leaving too much for the lower-order. Andre Russell bowled brilliant two overs in the death to take Kolkata Knight Riders home.

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Earlier in the day, Rahul Tripathi, who was promoted to the top-order made full use of the opportunity. He made 81 off Kolkata Knight Riders’ 167 which is a phenomenal effort. The star attractions – Shubman Gill, Eoin Morgan, and Andre Russell failed to fire once again leaving too much pressure on skipper Dinesh Karthik.

Chennai Super Kings bowler mainly Karn Sharma, who played his first game, did exceptionally well to keep the Kolkata batting under check. Kolkata Knight Riders lost five wickets for just 27 runs – including Tripathi’s – and that’s where the game turned as they managed to post only 168 runs which in the end was enough to seal the win.

Failed to hit boundaries in the end – MS Dhoni

Speaking at the end of the game, MS Dhoni pointed 2-3 good overs from Kolkata in the middle-overs made the difference in the game. Chennai lost their set batters during the period and couldn’t recover.

“In the middle overs, there was a phase when they bowled two-three good overs. Then we lost wickets. If our batting was different during that period, the result would have been different. Initially, we gave away a few too many with the new ball. Karn did really well. The bowlers did well to bring them down to 160, but the batsmen let the bowlers down,” MS Dhoni said. 

Speaking further, MS Dhoni also stated the failure to hit boundaries in the death kept on adding pressure. Kedar Jadhav struggled to get his timing right leaving Chennai Super at four points from six games.

“There were no boundaries in the end, and you have to be slightly innovative in these scenarios. If someone is bowling just back of a length, you have to find a way to hit boundaries,” he added.