Maxwell caught at the dugout
Chennai Super Kings have set high standards in the field so far, and tonight a couple of sharp saves by Ravindra Jadeja at backward point was testament to that. However, one fumble by Dwayne Smith at the boundary stood out like a sore thumb. He moved to his right from long-off to cut off a cover drive from David Miller but failed to bend down in time to stop it. The ball went under the bridge and rolled to the rope. It wasn't the only fumble during the innings though.
Glenn Maxwell was not offering catches inside the boundary, but beyond the rope everyone had to be alert. He made Smith pay for bowling length in the style best known to him - turn around and play the reverse hit. On two occasions in one over, Maxwell made a mockery of Smith by playing the reverse pull over third man and there was much joy for the ball boy patrolling the rope who took the catch comfortably. The young man, who had his 15 seconds of fame, had a proud smile for the cameras. Three balls later, Maxwell played the same shot but this time his team-mate Rishi Dhawan was forced out of the comfort of the dug-out to take the catch. And he was more than happy to take it.
Maxwell did eventually fall to a catch within the rope. Mohit Sharma bowled a slower ball that Maxwell looked to slog over deep midwicket but Jadeja caught it comfortably a few yards in front of the rope. The momentum caused him to back-pedal a step, but he decided to indulge himself a bit by deliberately jogging back a couple of steps more. He then dangled his feet in the air outside the boundary rope, with the ball still in his hands. His antics made Maxwell pause for a few seconds before walking back.
The direct hit
Mitchell Johnson may not have made early inroads with the ball, but he wasn't going to miss out on the field when the opportunity arose. Faf du Plessis clipped the ball towards midwicket and looked to pinch a second run but Brendon McCullum was always under pressure because Johnson was targeting the bowler's end. Johnson had just one stump to aim at from behind midwicket and fired a flat throw at the stumps. The bowler Murali Kartik wisely opted not to collect the ball first and McCullum, oddly with helmet in hand, was ball-watching and saw it strike the stumps still a yard short. It left Super Kings 98 for 4 with a required rate of 16.75.
Kanishkaa Balachandran is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo