- Former English batsman Kevin Pietersen said he doesn’t agree with MS Dhoni’s justification of batting at No. 7
- Dhoni dropped himself down the order in CSK’s failed attempt of chasing the target of 217 against RR
- You got to go in with the belief you will be able to win it said Gavaskar
Former English batsman Kevin Pietersen, during a post match analysis show, said that he is not buying into the defence given by MS Dhoni for his approach to bat at No. 7 to “try a few different things” during Chennai Super Kings’ 16-run defeat against Rajasthan Royals in their Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 match on Tuesday in Sharjah.
The former English batsman said it is advisable to stick to the team’s strengths and not get into too much experimentation in a tournament such as the Indian Premier League, which “can bite” back very, very quickly.
In the match against Rajasthan Royals, on Tuesday, MS Dhoni dropped himself down the order and walked in at No. 7 despite the asking rate shooting up for Chennai Super Kings who failed to chase the target of 217 put up by the Rajasthan side.
Dhoni arrived at the middle when 103 were needed off 38 balls. The CSK skipper kept knocking singles and managed just 9 runs in the first 12 balls until the 19th over. Dhoni then hit 3 massive sixes in the final over but for CSK it was already too late by then.
During the show, Kevin Pietersen told, “Yeah, you got to get up. You have to at least give yourself the opportunity to win the game. That’s what Sunny is talking about,” Star Sports.
He added, “When you see how close they went, Du Plessis started to go, then MS Dhoni started hitting at the end and then they lost by only 16 runs.
“So we were talking about a 4 or 5-over period when they were just knocking it around, knocking it around and running silly singles. They could have caught the game up there with a little bit of intent. They could have easily knocked this score off. If you need 20 in the last over, you can win this game.
“It’s not about experiments, saying ‘oh it’s early on in the tournament’. Let me tell you, T20 cricket can bite you very, very quickly. You can end up losing five games on the go very quickly and then you can end up thinking ‘oh my goodness, are we actually going to get into the finals?’. I am not buying into this nonsense.’”
The former English batsman comments came when MS Dhoni defended his decision of coming on the field to bat at number 7 position saying that CSK are trying out different combinations and can always go back to their strengths if they do not work out.
Dhoni said, “we want to try a few different things, like sending Sam or Jadeja. That’s something we haven’t done for a very long time and this gives us an opportunity to do that at the start of the tournament,”.
“As the tournament progresses, you will see the senior players stepping in and taking that added responsibility.
“Otherwise, we have been one team that has kept doing the same thing. I feel we have an opportunity to try a few different things. if it doesn’t work, we can go back to what our strength is.”
Meanwhile former great Indian batsman Sunil Gavaskar slammed Dhoni’s approach saying he could not understand the reason behind Dhoni walking in to bat at number 7 when the team was having trouble chasing such a colossal target.
Gavaskar added that sending the young Ruturaj Gaikwad higher up the order on his debut match when the asking run rate was already shooting up was not an ideal way to approach the chase.
He said, “We can’t surmise that in the previous, he sent in Sam Curran ahead of him and Curran got 18 off 6 deliveries. Curran did well again, he hit a couple of sixes.
“And then I thought he might come in after that instead of sending young Ruturaj Gaikwad because when the opposition has got 216 means he has to start playing his shots from the word go.
“It’s not going to be easy for him. If the opposition had got 160-170, then by all means, send in Ruturaj so he can maybe play himself in.
“But coming into bat after 5 wickets is like he had decided this match is not going to be won. And that’s no way to approach any target. You got to go in with the belief you will be able to win it,” the former 71 year old Indian batsman said