There you have it. The Delhi Capitals fail to reach the final in spite of a breakthrough. They are still the only team in IPL history to have never played a final. They don’t really deserve to reach the finals though with the way that they played in this game.
At the toss, MSD won and said that he would like to field first. When asked how he felt about batting first, Iyer replied that he wanted to bat first anyway. So both teams got what they wanted. Coming to the game, Delhi Capitals just never got going. That one partnership in every game which completely takes away the game from the opposition was missing here. The Capitals kept losing wickets at regular intervals. It started with Prithvi Shaw, whose ‘not out’ LBW decision was successfully overturned by MS Dhoni. At No.3, Colin Munro was sent in to bat. I think that was a mistake. Munro is a leftie and so is Shikhar Dhawan. And lefties are like evening supper for Harbhajan Singh. Better yet, Kiwi lefties like Munro who struggle against spin. Although Munro did well to see off Harbhajan’s over, his partner Shikhar Dhawan could not do the same. He was caught behind to a flipper which MS Dhoni’s gloves almost refused to stick to. But at the end Shikhar had to walk back. Then out came Iyer.
Maybe the pressure of playing in a knockout match weighed too heavily on such a young captain like Iyer. That could have been what caused him to throw his wicket away after a slow start adding 13 runs to the scoreboard and taking 16 balls to do that. Rishabh Pnt is the most Dhoni-esque person you can find. When he fires – oh boy, he fiiiiires! and he is quite consistent too. But you cannot rely on him to fire in every game. This game too, he played an innings of 38 against the run of play to take his team to a somewhat respectable total. But DC rely on him too much. Next year maybe they will find another finisher to bat below Rishabh and to take the pressure off him.
When the CSK batsmen walked out to bat, the tides were already tilted quite a bit towards their side. Watson had not had a good game until the 96 against SRH. While Faf had played an innings of 96 in the final game of the group stage against KXIP so he was in top form. So he used his form to his advantage and middled the ball right from the start,. While this kept the scoreboad going at a cheetah-like pace, it also gave his partner Shane Watson some time to settle. So when Faf got out to Boult in the 11th over, Watto was ready to take charge. In the very next over, he completely tore Keeemo Paul to shreds. CSK got 25 runs and Shane Watson’s form from that over.
After the cruising start that the openers gave CSK, there was hardly any chance of a collapse. Following the loss of Du Plessis and Watto, all CSK needed to do was play smartly, and Rayudu along with Raina and Dhoni did that. With this complete push aside of the Delhi Capitals, CSK hve managed to set up the 4th MI-CSK final. That is just too much considering CSK didn’t even play for two seasons. I’m not predicting any winner yet, but I definitely want MI to win for the simple reason that no team should ever win the IPL twice in arow. That would make it seem like a Bundesliga or Ligue 1 where one or two teams rule the roost. Anyway, after 59 matches of entertaining cricket, we have our finalists!