Chennai v Mumbai, 1st Qualifier, IPL 2013, Delhi

All fizz, no kick

Mumbai Indians still have a better head-to-head record against Chennai Super Kings, but once again on the big occasion, they came second

Abhishek Purohit

May 21, 2013

Comments: 67 | Text size: A | A

Dwayne Bravo gives Kieron Pollard a send-off, Mumbai Indians v Chennai Super Kings, Eliminator, IPL 2012, Bangalore, May 23, 2012
When it comes to big games against Chennai Super Kings, Mumbai Indians hit a glass ceiling © AFP

Yet another IPL playoff match. Yet another win for Chennai Super Kings, their eighth in 11 such games. Yet another defeat for Mumbai Indians, their fourth in five such games, including their third in three to Super Kings. Since the IPL final of 2010, Mumbai Indians had won six of the eight times they had met Super Kings before tonight. Only one of those meetings had been a playoff match, the eliminator in 2012. And Mumbai Indians had lost that. They still have a better head-to-head record against Super Kings, but when it comes to the big occasion, they always come second. This collection of superstars just falls apart under pressure.

Bat first, bat big and let five specialist bowlers squeeze the opposition. This had been Mumbai Indians' mantra this season. They'd won the toss, batted and won their first seven home games this way. Somewhere down the line the time was going to come when their bowlers would not have the cushion of a big total and their batsmen would have to come good under the demands of a chase in a crunch match. Through the league stage, there were signs Mumbai Indians would likely struggle in that case, especially away from home.

They narrowly failed to chase 157 against Royal Challengers Bangalore in Bangalore. Then they managed 92 to Rajasthan Royals' 179 in Jaipur. They did get home against Kolkata Knight Riders' 159 in Kolkata, but needed Harbhajan Singh to hit a six with nine needed off four. Pune Warriors could not test them with just 112, but some signs were again visible in Mumbai Indians' last home match, against Sunrisers Hyderabad's 178. The asking-rate had nearly touched 16 at the death when Kieron Pollard hit eight sixes in no time. That does not happen every day, and in their next match, Mumbai Indians crumbled to 133 in pursuit of Kings XI Punjab's 183 in Dharamsala.

Rohit Sharma was visibly disappointed at losing the toss and having to bowl. A month ago on the same ground, his bowlers had made a mess of defending 161, bowling full tosses and poor lines for Virender Sehwag and Mahela Jayawardene to finish things with three overs to spare.

There wasn't even the cushion of 161 today, they had to start blank. Blank and clueless was how they appeared against Michael Hussey and Suresh Raina's onslaught. This is a staggering thing to say in Twenty20, a format where bowlers don't have to do much to get wickets, but at no point during 20 overs did Mumbai Indians threaten to strike.

First ball from Mitchell Johnson was a full toss on the pads and was taken for an easy four. Mumbai Indians went on to bowl a ridiculous amount of full tosses at the death and most of them were taken for boundaries. Munaf Patel had hardly played this season, came into a playoff match, and bowled too often into the pads. When even Suresh Raina does not expect a short ball from you and is prepared for the full one, you know you are getting too predictable. Not once did Lasith Malinga try the bouncer. He didn't even try short of a good length. Pragyan Ojha was likely to find it difficult against two left-handers in such touch, and he did. The fifth bowler was one area Mumbai Indians have had issues with during the season, and Pollard leaked runs again. Had Harbhajan Singh not slowed it down a tad during the middle, MS Dhoni would not have felt his side's total was 10 runs short.

Dwayne Smith's manic hitting put Mumbai Indians slightly ahead after eight overs. He was crashing almost everything for boundaries and another two or three such overs could well have closed the door on Super Kings. With Smith, though, there are only two gears, first and fifth, and he usually does not shift them during an innings. Probably such a tall chase required at least one batsman to play in the way he did. Probably with men such as Rohit Sharma, Dinesh Karthik, Ambati Rayudu and Pollard to follow, Smith was right in not being too selective with his shots.

Not often does a batsman make 68 off 28 in a Twenty20 and end up on the losing side. Which is why Mumbai Indians' capitulation, so swift and decisive, was disappointing. None of the four batsmen after Smith lasted even 20 deliveries each. Rohit and Karthik are among the leading run-getters this season but struggled to score even during their short stays on the big night. And the tail showed it is a really long tail with Harbhajan in at No 7.

Once more, the multiple champions proved too good for the pretentious challengers. You can pack your side with all the superstars you want. Both Super Kings and Mumbai Indians have done so. That is where the similarity ends. As long as Mumbai Indians keep crumbling under pressure in crunch matches, that is all they will be taken for. A collection of superstars. They have another chance on Friday in the second qualifier to earn some respect as a team. Meanwhile, Super Kings will be waiting for their fifth final in six seasons.

Abhishek Purohit is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by Shajahan.P on (May 23, 2013, 10:20 GMT)

MI lost because of their own mistakes. 1. Too many full Tosses and bowling on the pads...results CSK scored 190+. (it is always been a concern in IPL to bowl to left handers.. not getting gud line and lenth) 2.Do MI really need 5th bowlers while Rohit, Pollard, Smith can be handy with the ball. Look CSK they can bat till 8th down. 3. Tare is not experienced to play in finals. 4. Munaf Patel is worst bowler always. (after Hussey found a gap, Munaf wanted Gully fielder to go to 3rd slip, but already a 3rd man is there... lol..) 5. D.Smith will get out if you bowl big wide delivery outside off.

Posted by venky91 on (May 23, 2013, 9:25 GMT)

Csk is the best example for a t20 team. They are a world class unit. Whereas mumbai thinks that they are best but they're not. Rohit is lazy in the field. Ponting selection s bizarre. They are best example for the proverb too many cooks spoil the broth.

Posted by   on (May 23, 2013, 5:49 GMT)

The second qualifier is not over yet. There is a team called Rajasthan Royals who just made it to the second qualifier and mind you, they have beaten Mumbai comprehensively in this tournament at home. So before we talk about MI in the finals, we must really see what's going to happen at the Eden on Friday evening. Royals have shown absolute strength come what may, and they are a force to reckon with. I am not anti-Mumbai, but Royals look very strong!

Posted by crickarr on (May 23, 2013, 5:38 GMT)

MI are not judicious with there selection of players and chased STARS for there team. Richard levi came to the scene, they bought him, this year it was Maxwell, even though they rarely used him. They Also have some other stars like ponting, SRT, Johnson, Malinga, Bhaji, Smith.....ETC...May be still this is not enough. They will go for some more.

Posted by   on (May 23, 2013, 2:11 GMT)

" You can pack your side with all the superstars you want. Both Super Kings and Mumbai Indians have done so." ---- Your statement is completely wrong. CSK was formed with local players from TN except for Dhoni ; and they have proved themselves to be match winners in their own aspect like Ashwin, Badri, Vijay. MI ran behind superstars.

Posted by   on (May 23, 2013, 2:00 GMT)

CSK is unbeatable. Byfar the best outfit in the IPL. Dhoni will demolish every bowler in sught. This guy jadeja keeps taking wickets even though he is such a ordinary bowler. I can't explian it. But this team is head and shoulders above the rest.

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 19:55 GMT)

CSK is better than MI. And CSK is better than any other IPL team. Everyone knows it, but only a few accept :)

Posted by deadite11 on (May 22, 2013, 17:26 GMT)

Yesterday's game shows the match between a fair team vs over-rated team. This season MI used to win only in home matches and managed to win against weak teams in away and one match against CSK. CSK already known lossing in early matches and then accelerate. MI fans just saying always CSK lost 2 matches, lost lost! Losing are part of the game which a team needs good game and bit of luck. MI won toss on both the matches, batted first and won. If MI chase those 2 league matches then result would ve been favour of CSK. MI so strongest team having 11 stars which used to spent much. They cant able to win even one match if any single fast bowler miss to play for their team.

Posted by venuvi10 on (May 22, 2013, 17:26 GMT)

I am so surprised Purohit about this artile being published..

TELL how many times CSK have batted second and won a game in play offs

against MI too they have always batted first.. i am surprised also cricinfo has published this article

Posted by hari rao on (May 22, 2013, 16:47 GMT)

@Ayush Goyal, when the author talks about big match, he talks about qualifier/eliminator/finals. In league games MI did get better of CSK, however, big games show how tough you are. Even if you talk about stats perspective, CSK has won two IPL championships, wherein MI has none. Champions league also CSK has won. CSK has been in fnals 5 times, how many finals MI has been in? Results matter, and results wise we have to agree that CSK is a better team.

Posted by AsherCA on (May 22, 2013, 15:50 GMT)

I knew MI would lose the match, as soon as I saw Munaf Patel in the playing 11.

As a bowler - without seaming conditions, Munaf just bowls hit-me balls. As a batsman / fielder, he just does not exist ! He creates a massive handicap for MI. I hope Rohit has learnt his lesson.

If & when Sachin regains fitness, Sachin should replace Munaf & Franklin could come in for Smith.

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 15:43 GMT)

I have to comment on this:

The author of this article seems to hate MI. So let me, with all due respect, express my disagreement and a couple of arguments: 1. MI dont lag the will power for big matches. MI defeated CSK in both the league matches. Once in the last over denying MSD the six when it seemed all possible, and second when CSK were on the top and MI had to defend a low total, and they managed to not only win it, even NRR rocketed. By no means both matches were trifle, as MI would have struggled to qualify if they hadn't won these matches 2. For the same reason the author gave for MI, CSK made a mockery of their chases multiple times, against MI and even last league game too. So please dont comment on why CSK is any better than MI in chasing 3. For big matches, if CSK was too good, out of 5 times they reachhed playoffs, they should have won the league 5 times, or 4 times, or at least 3 times, but they havent 4. MI have won big matches, infact they have won the CL once, even CS

Posted by Trakkan on (May 22, 2013, 15:03 GMT)

It is an established truth that MI are not big match team. They can do great in school exams but will fail in board exams. Talking of CSK not a good chasing team is absolutely laughable. They won CL T20 by chasing the target. For argument sake CSK bashers say its bowling is worst but when they win batting first they blame it on toss. If MI is a great team then why don't they just win instead of blaming toss. "Rohit was visibly sad losing toss" says everything about their strength and mentality. 5/6 in finals but for some still CSK is "mediocre team", "bits & pieces of players", "poor bowling unit" and so on.

You cannot do anything with jealousy.

Posted by ARad on (May 22, 2013, 14:33 GMT)

I also thought that CSK was 10 runs short since the track looked like a road but if a team keeps on winning season after season, you cannot simply say luck is the reason. At least part of their success must be attributed to good, calm no-nonsense leaders and team management that chooses players with the right attitude (people who are hungry, humble and willing to put in the hard work).

Posted by praks3705 on (May 22, 2013, 13:52 GMT)

I hope Raina, Jaddu, Dhawan, Rohit will perform in Champions Trophy too, and the gr8 captain shows his captaincy skills there. I wonder why there is so much of difference in level of motivation and commitment when they play for India.

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 13:24 GMT)

Sachin's 'sheer presence' sometimes wins matches. So does Munaf's; so does Kulasekhara's; and so does everyone's. And, interestingly, so does their sheer absence, too!

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 13:22 GMT)

mi lost the match cause they have (k.pollard,d.smith,r.sharma)even they are going with five genuine bowlers witch is stupid i t20 when its come to csk they used raina regularly before finding sir r.jadeja in team its simple you cant win a t20 game always with six batsmen especialy when you lost 2-3 wickets in a row..

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 13:02 GMT)

CSK just leading the table and won the tournament, but as per rules they are needed to perform few "Pressure" matches. I had just only one word to say about it! CSK - Manchester United of IPL. Evergreen always!

Posted by Jaga2011 on (May 22, 2013, 12:39 GMT)

The CSK style of play and coaching bears a strong resemblance to the LA Lakers/Chicago Bulls style of basketball in the NBA under Phil Jackson. Excellent coach and the right mix of superstars along with very important bit-players. Whereas the MI look more like the Portland Trailblazers who couldn't beat Kobe's LA Lakers in big matches despite having a roster full of superstars. A dream-team of superstars will not necessarily be successful. Usually a great-performing team needs the humbler bit-players (Vijay, MSharma, Morkel, Badri) along with the superstar players(Dhoni, Hussey, Raina) and some in the middle(Jadeja, Ashwin, Bravo, Morris). The right mix is important and a top-class coach/player manager is surely needed- CSK have that.

Posted by TheUltimateTruth on (May 22, 2013, 12:27 GMT)

@test_cricket_is_real_cricket, I agree the toss could sometimes play a big role in deciding the winner of the match. But, yesterday the toss or the pitch were not to blame. (i) MI bowled poorly. (ii) MI should have applied pressure early on on CSK batters by bringing in Malinga along with Johnson. Hussey was very cautious in how he played in the first few overs. (iii) Even CSK bowled poorly (length balls and short balls, with no variation of pace or line) in the first 9 overs. Then Jadeja bowled a ball wide outside which Smith heaved across the line. That was unconscionable. The CSK bowling improved considerably after that, Bravo was especially excellent. May be the lifting of the pressure with Smith gone lifted the CSK bowlers. (iv) When Pollard started hitting the variations in line and pace helped again in getting rid of him. These were the factors that decided the match, not the pitch or the toss.

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 12:00 GMT)

Picking Munaf Patel instead of Rishi Dhawan/Dhawal Kulkarni was a huge mistake. MI is also 1 batsman/all rounder short and they would do well if they find one soon. Tendulkar needs to join the team in place of Ambati Rayudu if MI have any hopes of lifting the cup.

Posted by test_cricket_is_real_cricket on (May 22, 2013, 11:53 GMT)

@TheUltimateTruth: I have nothing against CSK... as a matter of fact, I think they are deserved winners of this edition as they topped the league stages... the playoffs are not a fair indicator of a team's performance in IPL... 4 matches should not decide the outcome of a 72 match tournament... anyway, thats a different argument... you cannot ignore the fact that CSK dont chase as well as they defend targets, and yesterday the toss was a big factor... despite being 90 odd for 2 in 9 overs, its always difficult for a team to chase down 10 an over...

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 11:30 GMT)

It was CSK's day yesterday. But, it's not all over yet folks. The possibility of MI getting into the finals and winning the IPL is still open.

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 11:03 GMT)

Sunita : u have such a gud sense of humour,,,, keep it up

Posted by TheUltimateTruth on (May 22, 2013, 10:55 GMT)

@CriciSach, Lying with statistics are we? I compiled the numbers for all CSK playoff matches across all IPL seasons. Including yesterday's game, CSK has played 11 playoff matches. They have won the toss 6 times and lost the toss 5 times. That's as close to 50-50 as you can get. CSK has won 8 matches out of 11. In all three of their losses CSK batted FIRST. How is batting first an advantage to them then? In fact, one would conclude that CSK's win record is 100% when they chase. The bottom line is sometimes the other team is asked to bat first even when CSK wins the toss and sometimes CSK is asked to bat first when others win the toss. It depends on the respective captains' reading of the pitch. Stop making excuses and start appreciating clever strategy and good cricket when you see it (which is pretty much every time CSK plays!).

Posted by AllInFairNess on (May 22, 2013, 10:32 GMT)

@Sunita Verma, hilarious is your comment, what happened to 2010 Final and 2012 Eliminator where Sachin played in both the games which was squarely won by CSK and also the scores were not that huge like yesterday.

Posted by TheUltimateTruth on (May 22, 2013, 10:28 GMT)

@sarangsrk, and @test_cricket_is_real_cricket, your comments betray a strong sense of bitterness against CSK. Your excuse for MI losing yesterday is pathetic. May be we should require CSK to play with one hand tied behind their backs? Then you will say it should have been both hands tied behind their backs! Ask how many times have CSK won the toss in their 11 playoff matches? The other team's captains decided to bowl first on several occasions. How is that CSK's fault? Yesterday, MI were in a great position even after Dwayne Smith got out. They just couldn't capitalize on it. Bravo along with Jadeja, Ashwin, and Morris bowled cleverly. Give credit where it is due.

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 10:24 GMT)

Just a thought - perhaps the Mumbai lack of success is all down to the BCCI not altering the playing conditions to allow them to bring in a substitute player of suitable quality to ensure their victory.

Posted by praveen4honestremark on (May 22, 2013, 10:22 GMT)

@CriciSach..Your hypothesis of toss to explain why MI loose always in play-off's will only be appreciated if you can please explain us how MI choke in big games and CSK wins big games in all the IPL's. Can you explain how your players choke in Detail please. Eager to hear that from you.

Posted by Pavinasen on (May 22, 2013, 10:13 GMT)

The colour expert tells me when you add more orange & lesser purple you get yellow.

Orange = Top batsmen Purple = Top bowler Yellow = Top team

Whistle podu maam.

Posted by parthaacs on (May 22, 2013, 10:05 GMT)

CSK's owners are the only one who have any previous experience in cricket unlike other franchise owners. They have assembled a very good team with a very good captain & coach. Other teams spent money in attracting flamboyant players where as CSK owners put together a good team.

That's why the team is doing consistently well.

Posted by Tapash on (May 22, 2013, 10:01 GMT)

Kartik & Rohit Sharma scored 19 runs from 33 runs and this is the reason of defeat. I think Kartik will contribute to more defeat. No option?????????

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 9:59 GMT)

Had Sachin played the Qualifier it would have been the different story, because the sheer presence of Sachin is more than enough to demoralized the opponent. Im very happy the way Smith played the other night but smith have never played with the same authority when he opens the inning with sachin. If he playes the same way when he opens with sachin than Mumbai will definitely win IPL. Mumbai indian will have to think beyond Malinga. He is becoming to much predictable and often goes for runs in IPL 6

Posted by Ankarvi on (May 22, 2013, 9:46 GMT)

After Pollard had hit RJ for 2 sixers, Dhoni went upto RJ and said some thing. Guess what, next ball Pollard hit it straight to Hussey. Mastermind. Nothing else more needed to say, CSK play wise cricket.

Posted by CriciSach on (May 22, 2013, 9:15 GMT)

It is true that MI have invariably cracked under the pressure of chasing.But stats tell us that most teams have..In IPL matches from 2010-2013(till date) 70%,ie,9 of 13 matches have been won by teams batting first.So,the moment a team wins the toss ,it statistically has a 70% greater chance of winning the match,if they bat first. CSK have batted first in a whopping 87.5% of their matches(7 out of 8) and have won 75% of the tosses(6 out of 8).MI,on the other hand,have chased in a staggering 83%(5 out of 6) matches. Rather than a battle of champions vs challengers,this looks like a battle of the toss winner vs toss loser or a battle of the first batter vs chaser. Having chased only once in 8 matches(2011 1st Q),it would be interesting to see what CSK do if they are made to chase in the final in Kolkota...Oh!!but that is one big IF,given their toss winning ratio.

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 9:15 GMT)

Chennai is the best.....oh no...wait...dhoni is the best

Posted by vswami on (May 22, 2013, 9:13 GMT)

@ test_cricket_is_real_cricket And if Sachin was 25 years old when IPL started, Mumbai would be a champion side several times over. Both the Mumbai crowd and Mumbai players have been boorish throughout the tournament, and it was an effort for Rohit Sharma to concede that they had been outplayed and compliment the opposition. The best thing I like about CSK more than the fact that they have been in 5 finals is that they have won the fairplay 4 times. Never do you see them desperate to win by any means. There is a basic minimum standard of behaviour you get from CSK.

Posted by AllInFairNess on (May 22, 2013, 9:10 GMT)

@test_cricket_is_real_cricket, if your reasoning gives you solace be that be.

Posted by A.Ak on (May 22, 2013, 9:09 GMT)

CSK didnt select superstars, their players became stars in six seasons (Ashwin - leading Indian spinner was unknown till 2010).

Posted by VrrD on (May 22, 2013, 9:08 GMT)

CSK has once again proved that it is a champion team. The presence of all-rounders like Dwayne Bravo, Morris and Albie Morkel make it a team of 10 batsman and 6 bowlers.

Posted by Susmithavargas on (May 22, 2013, 9:06 GMT)

It is evident by this time to all the fans of IPL that Dhoni is the coolest and the most balanced player in the history of IPL and he will be in the future. No one can out beat him. See the batting lineup - except Dhoni & Hussey, no star player in the side for csk. But the way these two guys along with ever green Raina, made it to the finals. Credit to the great Trio! Nothing to blame MI for their failure. Sometimes Pollard and Rohit click and sometimes not. Remember Pollard made it once when they were to hit 62 out of 28. It is Jadeja who made the difference yesterday by sending Dwane Smith who is firing. That along with the dismissal of Pollard made the way for Csk. CSK fans should wait to receive Dhoni and team to see them on the streets of Chennai with IPL Cup 2013.

Posted by test_cricket_is_real_cricket on (May 22, 2013, 8:55 GMT)

Chennai have batted first in 9 out of 11 games in all IPL playoffs... THAT, more than anything else is the key to their success... in the 2 games chasing, they have had a target of 112 against kxi in 2008, and 170 odd against rcb in 2011... they have been lucky to win the toss on most occasions... you bet, had mumbai batted first on that pitch yesterday, we would have been looking at a 200+ target for CSK... it would have been interesting to see their performance then....

Posted by spaalur on (May 22, 2013, 8:50 GMT)

I feel sorry for Mum after the defeat yesterday, but it is the team capable of winning the cup. It was an awesome start by Smith which could have won game for MI if he or Pollard stayed for some more time.But it dint work. Sachin has to be back on the top of the order and I wish Tare should be given chance ahead of Rayudu. Ponting would be the right person to lead the side, but none of 4 foreign players can be out, hence MI should take a chance with Rohit and Sachin should back him and take the responsibility I feel...

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 8:25 GMT)

CSK are plain winners when the occasion demands it. It almost feels like they lose some league games just for the law of averages.

Posted by Notredam on (May 22, 2013, 7:58 GMT)

CSK are champions,, not because of of luck.. % finals out of 6,,6 Semis out of 6..They have great captain..Mahi(Dhoni),, Dhoni all time best indian captain..If he wud have been from Mumbai,Kolkata he wud have been made god..Just he is from State not much known fro cricket..he remains in backlight..But really CSK made smartest decision ever in 2008 to buy even after 5-10 still repent dhoni loss..Mind it..its dhoni vs other 8-9 teams..alone he wins it..comfortably..

Posted by ohpappa on (May 22, 2013, 7:43 GMT)

In crunch games Rohit is not choice for captain. He was successful because his team played well.

Ponting should be made as captain - he is a world cup winner has the experience to cope up with these kind of situations. Please make Ponting as captain again.

Also Sachin should be back. If he had played he would have clamly rotated the strike when Smith doing the hitting.

In crunch games experience matters a LOT - please understand MI - hope you do so.

Rohit face itself tells he is disappointed with toss, while CSK batting and in the presentation - he needs learn to keep his emotions within himself and present a composed look outside which is going to take some he learns...

Posted by criclover1900 on (May 22, 2013, 7:35 GMT)

I accept the shortcomings of the MI as napolean said i rather see a lion leading a pack of goats than a goat leading a pack of lions. The MI were lead by RH whi was cribbing on the field and blasting his bowlers fielders and all. What really shocked me was at the toss ravi shastri mentions to MS that u have a another chance at the playoffs...well mr. Shastri is from mumbai i respect his support but not this way atleast, and look what happened ravi shastri was not to be seen anywhere post match. To add further the commentators from mumbai start coaching the MI from the box and when they see the result going the other way become turncoats,

Posted by Avidcricketlover on (May 22, 2013, 7:22 GMT)

@rohan024 , the same can be said about Rohit. He has never delivered if he is put under pressure. Everytime when Karthik has scored heavily, he has scored later too but under pressure, he is a cracking egg. Be it for India where he has never performed or for Mumbai Indians. He was better off at Deccan chargers in my opinion where he was decent.

Posted by sweetspot on (May 22, 2013, 6:45 GMT)

It's incredible how all the assets all the fans boast of before a defeat become liabilities after. CSK know how to win - period. They're fantastic in big games, but they're also always happy on the field and graceful. No retarded behaviour, no tensions, nothing negative. Incredible how they just switch on and go, go, go.

In a fast changing world, it is great to see consistency, and CSK fans must be really happy to see their team deliver. Let's simply enjoy what they provide.

Posted by rohan024 on (May 22, 2013, 6:30 GMT)

The biggest fluke in MI team is Karthik. In the initial part of the tournament, when teams are still settling in with their combinations, he played a couple of good knocks and on back of it, even got a ticket in the ICC Champions trophy squad to England. Ever since then, he is back to his usual consistent failure style. The fact is its unlikely MI can win a match without Rohit Sharma contributing in it.

Posted by venbas on (May 22, 2013, 5:50 GMT)

I dont know why people refer to CSK as a bunch of superstars...Except for Dhoni none of the other players are superstars in their respective country teams and might not even command their positions across formats(ex. Morris, Albie etc. ). They are more a bunch of talented players who sum total for team contributions is way ahead of aggregation of individual contributions in teams such as Mumbai. Each man is there for the other be it whilst taking a brilliant catch to lift the moods and dismiss a dangerous player or the assured hitting backed by self beleif, the team is in the mould of the Captain COOL. As one of the commentators rightly pointed out, this team reminds us of the Aussie's of yore who were supremely self assured of themselves and always managed to find a way to win irrespective of the situation.

Posted by Sukruti on (May 22, 2013, 5:48 GMT)

It was clear MI had surrendered under pressure, which they imposed themselves by bowling so poorly to CSK. No doubt CSK are very good batsmen, but poor bowling made their job that much easy to score runs, as otherwise also, CSK could have scored well. When it came to batting, they started very well with Smith. But soon after Smith's departure, the only thing that Rohit and Karthik could have done was to rotate strike continuously by taking 2s and 1s and occasionally striking boundaries, which would have atleast kept them in hunt for Pollard and co. to heave during the end of the innings. Clearly there was a team plan missing in their batting approach. When such high scores need to be chased, roles have to be clearly defined as to who should play what. Clearly it was missing. In case of CSK, it is clear, Hussey shall stay aroung until 15th over and Vijay shall strike the balls. Build platform for Raina and Dhoni later on to finsh off the innings. We could see that in CSKs approach.

Posted by crickarr on (May 22, 2013, 5:15 GMT)

Time and again I have said, CSK is a team where as RCB and MI are assembly of superstars or cricketing mercenaries. Another thing CSk has which others seemed to lack is their ability to rise from ashes. They can raise the level of their game a few notches above the opposition when the occasion demands. Those who are saying Dhoni to be lucky are cricketing iliterates or taking such pretentions to provide solace to there frustration.

Posted by Tash7 on (May 22, 2013, 5:04 GMT)

Chennai and Mumbai- undoubtedly two of the best teams in the IPL. Chennai has long shown its prowess -a balanced side, which almost always delivers, backed by innovative captaincy. Mumbai have a star studded line-up, which could often make you feel like they have an unfair advantage on their opposition...there are only a couple of players relatively unknown to the masses...yet, they almost colossally collapsed on many occasions,making you wonder as to whether the team was all hype. You'd think a team with the likes of Malinga and Pollard would almost never lose, but even some of their wins so far have seemed like struggles, even when their opposition helped with paltry totals. It seems fitting that the humility triumphs arrogance in this case- that way, I guess teams have a lot to learn from Dravid and Dhoni (Rajasthan and Chennai)...

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 4:47 GMT)

Is it so? mostly the Right Arm spin works in South and West part while Left Arm spin works in North and Eastern part of India [but also who the batsmen is in the plot], Luckily MI is not having Left handed batsmen to tackle Jadeja, Unluckily the same plan which was not working for Ashwin as it was in RR's match some days earlier but Dhoni was quick to realize it here[PlanB] though he missed out completely against watson that time.

Posted by Sandeep_Maddu on (May 22, 2013, 4:29 GMT)

Yes, MI have batsmen, bowlers and fielders but what they lack is Deputy Coach, Deputy Mentor, Assistant Coach, Assistant Mentor, Deputy batting coach, Deputy bowling coach, Deputy fielding coach, Assistant batting coach, Assistant bowling coach, Assistant fielding coach, Overall Supervisor, Deputy Overall Supervisor and most importantly a Psychiatrist

Posted by Princepurple1979 on (May 22, 2013, 4:17 GMT)

Its so funny, some one yesterday mentioned in this website that Rohit Sharma is a better captain than Dhoni and hence MI will win! Guess he got his answer now. It was a totally professional and ruthless effort from the big game boys CSK. And just how much Australia is missing out on Hussey! Man those drives of Malinga were of pristine quality. Glad we get to see him in IPL at least.

Posted by AllInFairNess on (May 22, 2013, 4:14 GMT)

@sarangsrk, you can derive what ever the solace you want to hide the drubbing MI received. FYI, league helps you to decide the position, but the playoffs will determine the winner. You can bring in ifs and buts but results matter, whether you win by 1 ball to spare, win by 100000 runs.

Posted by sarangsrk on (May 22, 2013, 3:51 GMT)

I don't think its fair to say that only MI choke. Just checked IPL history and found that of all the knockout/playoff matches that CSK has won in IPL till today, they have chased only twice and won. Once against Kings Punjab in IPL1 with 112 to chase and next time against RCB (anybody can chase against RCB...:)) . So the point is that CSK has never been tested chasing in high pressure games against quality attacks. Dhoni has been lucky to win tosses when required most and he has a well-settled, well oiled and IPL experienced side to make full use of batting first. In this IPL, they chased twice against MI and lost both times (folded out for lowest total in this year's IPL). In fact, CSK have won lot of chases only on the last ball/over which doesn't say that they are good chasers.MI's strength on the other hand is bowling and their batting doesn't have as experienced players as CSK. We need to see what CSK do in the final if they play MI and MI bats first and puts even 160 on the board

Posted by vivekanjvisvas on (May 22, 2013, 3:44 GMT)


Ponting is not like one to miss out from final XI. He is an exceptional cricketer. His intelligence will be very handy in captaincy and rohit does not match at any ways. Think of Kings XI. Gilly was not performing that well. He went out, given another chance after practice, came back and gave a bang. Almost, got them through.

I guess, ponting should be given a chance. He is not used at all.

Even if he does not score big, make him show his skill in captaincy and fielding. I feel that is more than enough in crunch situations. All the best !!!

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 3:13 GMT)

I reckon CSK coach Fleming can take a bit of credit too

Posted by   on (May 22, 2013, 2:31 GMT)

You need someone like Ricky Ponting to lead in Playoffs. The experience of winning 3 world cups matters. CSK has the experience of winning IPL and a captain who has won T20 and 50-50 world cup.

Posted by novice_Win on (May 22, 2013, 1:08 GMT)

Its true!! In league stages, Mumbai easily defeats CSK, BUT in the real stages of the tournament - CSK crushes MI. CSK is Australia of last decade - They will WIN when it matters the most....and MI is South Africa - Everyone knows they SHOULD win BUT everyone knows that they WON'T ;) :P Mumbai is a Funny team - Great Bowling attack, Great Batting line-up and great fielding side - YET they can't win... LOL!! ;)

Posted by   on (May 21, 2013, 23:35 GMT)

The trouble with Mumbai Indians is leadership. They have made a young and lazy captain who is incapable of lateral thinking. With such a lineup can't find an able leader of men?

Posted by xylo on (May 21, 2013, 22:08 GMT)

You could have all the superstars you want, but you have to be humble. That is the difference between the two sides. Proof? Check the fair play standings.

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Tournament Results
Super Kings v Mum Indians at Kolkata - May 26, 2013
Mum Indians won by 23 runs
Mum Indians v Royals at Kolkata - May 24, 2013
Mum Indians won by 4 wickets (with 1 ball remaining)
Royals v Sunrisers at Delhi - May 22, 2013
Royals won by 4 wickets (with 4 balls remaining)
Super Kings v Mum Indians at Delhi - May 21, 2013
Super Kings won by 48 runs
Sunrisers v KKR at Hyderabad (Deccan) - May 19, 2013
Sunrisers won by 5 wickets (with 7 balls remaining)
Warriors v Daredevils at Pune - May 19, 2013
Warriors won by 38 runs
More results »
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