Chennai Super Kings v Pune Warriors, IPL, Chennai April 15, 2013

Inspired Warriors pull off huge CSK upset


Pune Warriors 159 for 5 (Finch 67, Smith 39*, Morris 2-25) beat Chennai Super Kings 135 for 8 (Badrinath 34, Bhuvneshwar 2-12) by 24 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

They keep saying you have got to do the basics right, more so in Twenty20. They lie. On Monday night in Chennai, Pune Warriors did most of the basics wrong against the much-fancied Chennai Super Kings, but still won by a huge margin.

While batting only two of the seven Warriors batsmen went at a strike-rate of more than 112.5, and one of them faced 18 dots out of 45. They wasted a flying start - their best in all IPLs - with a muddle in the middle, Mitchell Marsh holed out into the deep and didn't even cross over, Manish Pandey slogged when he should have handed over the strike to Steven Smith, T Suman dropped a sitter that would have reduced Chennai Super Kings to 2 for 2, and they were consistently on the worse side of minor fielding errors.

Still, riding on Aaron Finch's 67 off 45 and Steven Smith's unbeaten 39 off 16, and Bhuvneshwar Kumar's impeccable swing at the top of the defence, Warriors pulled off the upset. Their basics might not have been perfect, but there was enough of the spectacular from the three aforementioned gentlemen.

The first ball Finch faced he drilled back past Dirk Nannes for four. He would hit seven more fours in the Powerplay. With a short back lift and a punch packed behind them. Robin Uthappa at the other end, though, fumbled his way to nine off 12 at the end of the Powerplay. The singles didn't come, Uthappa kept struggling, but Finch kept hitting enough boundaries to take this stand to the best opening for Warriors ever.

Then came on R Ashwin's spin and Chris Morris' bustle, and Warriors lost their way. In going from 96 for 0 to 128 for 4, they consumed 29 balls and looked set for a below-par total, especially after the 18th over produced just three runs. However, Smith, who wouldn't even have played but for the Tamil Nadu government's problem with Sri Lankan cricketers, had other ideas. He went crazy against Nannes and Dwayne Bravo, reverse-flicking the latter for a huge six over third man in the final over. Twenty-eight came off those last two overs, but this was still a strictly fighting total.

Under Bhuvneshwar's swing, the total grew a leg. With his second delivery, he trapped S Anirudha - who replaced Michael Hussey - with an inswinger. He looked like he could get Suresh Raina with each of the remaining deliveries of that wicket-maiden. Catches kept getting dropped, the fielding was not the sharpest, but Bhuvneshwar nipped out Raina soon.

Abhishek Nayar's cutters and Rahul Sharma's accuracy did the job in the middle overs, and once again Super Kings were left with close to 14 an over to chase through MS Dhoni, Bravo and Albie Morkel. It wasn't to be this time as the bowlers and fielders held their nerve.

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on April 17, 2013, 10:29 GMT

    Dhoni always talk about CSK's weak bowling attack, here the question is "Does he ever try to strengthen his bowling attack"; NO... CSK never looked trying seriously to buy Good Indian fast bowlers in the auction & focus on purchasing the batsmen and bit&pieces allrounders. Dhoni always loads CSK with too many batsmen in the playing 11, in the last match 8 proven batsmen + 2 bowling allrounders. If he really want to strengthen his bowling attack then play hilfenhaus in place of Morris. Morris has got wickets but in the later overs. Hilfenhaus is one who can get you 2 wickets in the first powerplay overs. Simple question for Dhoni "What he like to do, Chasing 170 with 8 batsmen + 2 bowling allrounders or chasing 150 with 8 batsmen + 1 bowling allrounder?"

  • Dummy4 on April 17, 2013, 1:23 GMT

    What a farce with CSK's opponents not being allowed to select their own team; a good way of avoiding Malinga etc! Why not go further and make them bat or bowl with their "wrong arm" They should be kicked out of the tournament ; if I was running one of the other teams I would DEMAND to select my own siderather tha bow down and weaken it and if this was not granted claim the match by default. Stop pussyfooting about!

  • TR on April 16, 2013, 17:09 GMT

    csk will start winning after 1. MVijay plays with courage . 2. Mvijay plays straight instead of crossbat shots. 3. Both openers hit out right upfront - again, no cross bat shots. How can a player (MVijay) with so much T20 experience with 2 centuries (!) play with such timidity at the start of the innings? Unbelievable. Somebody tell him the spelling of "courage" and "confidence".

  • Dummy4 on April 16, 2013, 17:06 GMT

    Give break to Vijay and bring aparajit, drop Braivo and bring Hussey. See the changes.

  • Dummy4 on April 16, 2013, 15:29 GMT

    CSK is playing with 8 batsmen + 2 bowling allrounders & still they have been very very very extra cautious in the opening overs throughout their last 4 matches. Its more than a crime to have a slow start when u have such a big batting lineup; u should start thrashing the bowlers from the second or maximum 3rd over. If a team loaded with 10 batsmen allows bowlers like dinda, bhuvneshwar, nayar & mitchell marsh to bowl economically (6.5 runs per over) then it means the team is lacking intensity, courage, brain, quality, ability, class, strategy, form & .........

  • Matrix on April 16, 2013, 10:05 GMT

    Its not a good idea to drop Vijay or Hussey combinmation at the top order for CSK. Openers need more time to get adjusted and Vijay surely needs more time. So Vijay and Huss should continue and Albie should be dropped from XI. Aniruddha can come in place of Raina and can solidify the middle. Raina is not doing any good getting out at the most inappropriate times. We need more local boys firing in IPL.

  • vas on April 16, 2013, 9:22 GMT

    @Venkiwaran, in the match against RCB, Kohli was out , given not out, Vijay was not out , given out. Those two decisions would've made huge impact to the game. Who was lucky here? It was just outcome that CSK won. Justice was served in the end.

  • Dummy4 on April 16, 2013, 9:07 GMT

    I THINK Nannes should b left out bring in hilfenhaus and Hussey back for Morkel.Jakarti deserves a go too!

  • Dummy4 on April 16, 2013, 9:00 GMT

    @ Sidhart; I could be wrong, but you sound pro CSK. All due respect; PWI put up an amazing, spirited performance never seen under the helm of Mathews. This said, it was the application that Taylor made throughout the entire fielding session, bowler rotation, persistence with Nayar, belief in Dinda (though I do not think he deserves to be in the playing XI) and the pressure he put on the CSK top order. Even Dhoni ironically seemed to succumb to it yesterday. Never thought that 160 odd would be difficult in home conditions for CSK. PWI need to twik the playing XI and sure will be a team to beat in this IPL for sure.

  • Venky on April 16, 2013, 8:35 GMT

    CSK is the most hyped team in IPL. If not for RP's magnanimous no ball in the RC game, this team will be languishing at the bottom of the table. Well played PWI. Dhoni's hits and miss kinda cricket or Jadeja's unscientific slogs will not get this team anywhere. Wherever is Baba Aparjit? Looks like he hasn't caught Dhoni's eye yet and maybe never will.