Chennai Super Kings v King XI Punjab, IPL 2014, second Qualifier, Mumbai May 30, 2014

Dhoni criticises 'irresponsible' seniors

ESPNcricinfo staff

The second qualifier was the third occasion that Chennai Super Kings had conceded over 200 runs to Kings XI Punjab this season. They lost each time. A refreshingly familiar century from Virender Sehwag set up a target of 227, but it looked in considerable danger as Suresh Raina produced a breathtaking 25-ball 87.

The highest successful chase in T20 history was in Super Kings' grasp as they became the first side to post 100 runs in the Powerplay. MS Dhoni, their captain, had believed all the ingredients had been in place for their progress into the IPL final.

"I think definitely it was something we could have achieved, the reason being Suresh [and] the way he batted," Dhoni said, "I think in the middle overs there was some very irresponsible cricket by some of the most experienced international cricketers, so I think definitely we need to have a look, in a game like this when the stakes are high, you can't really commit mistakes."

Raina's blitz had allowed the other batsmen to play a normal T20 chase. The equation had mellowed down to 127 from 83 balls, with eight wickets in hand. Coupled with their batting riches, Super Kings are also a big-game team, having made five IPL finals. That they would stumble as badly as losing four wickets for 33 runs between the 12th and 17th overs contributed to Dhoni's disappointment.

He also had stern words for a weakness that has trailed Super Kings across seasons. While most times their slower bowlers would mend the perception of a weak bowling attack, this season they had received quite some tap and it continued on Friday night. Ravindra Jadeja's 4-0-48-0 today was his worst T20 spell yet and R Ashwin was also slapped for 44 runs in his four overs.

"Apart from that bowling department also, we need our spinners to improve a bit," Dhoni said "Especially on good flat wickets that has been a concern for us, and again it proved in this game also.

"They way they started, definitely because I had belief in my bowling that they will definitely let them score over 200 runs. But overall they batted really well."

The loss of Dwayne Bravo, who had injured his shoulder during the UAE leg of the tournament, had limited the options at Dhoni's disposal in a crunch game.

"One of our retained players, we lost him right at the start. And to come to the knockout stages without him, that itself is a big achievement. If Bravo was playing in a game like this, we'll have one more spinner or a fast bowler and that really gives us good support. Six bowlers is something you can manoeuvre more with, but what's done is done. Bravo got injured but still we did really well in this tournament."

Sehwag was the architect of Kings XI's mammoth total. Booming front foot drives and pin-point cuts behind square were on full view and none of the Super Kings bowlers could curb his strokeplay.

"I think Viru pa, once he gets going hardly any bowler can stop him, and in our bowling attack also there is hardly any quick bowler who can push him onto the back foot," Dhoni said. "I think he batted really well, took the challenge to the spinners, dominated the spinners, never really let us get back into the game, they scored 25 runs more. The way Suresh batted, it was within our reach."

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  • Dummy on June 1, 2014, 14:45 GMT

    Being a csk fan,really disappointed at seeing their performance in semis,dhoni says international cricketers did not take responsibility..poor to see dhoni himself forgetting he is international player...i feel he didnt have the guts to come up the order and show what he is capable of...

  • vas on June 1, 2014, 13:08 GMT

    Every one in the CSK team performed well and has given match winning performances through out the tournament. Manhas and Negi had very few chances to perform. But if you help the opposition by running yourself out after Raina has removed all the pressure of chasing the big score it will hurt the team and the fans.

    CSK fans had all the fun during the past years. Let everybody enjoy their teams's success. KXIP invested wisely in the auction and are reaping the benefits. It will Preity's day today.

  • Dummy4 on June 1, 2014, 12:22 GMT

    Its peak time to change strategy from Dhoni side, Ashwin bowling attack is very poor from long time. Still he is in the team. Their bowling attack went wrong and scored around 200 above.Once Raina got out , Dhoni should take the initiative to bat up in the manage an normal innings and win it for CSK . In such kind of important matches, After raina - Dhoni should have to take the charge from their. He was sitting behind and watching the match most of the time and leaving it to others and try to finish it in style. But that was a nice strategy, now it is going out-dated.( Dhoni has to leave the Faith in Aswin and Isant)

    I am a fan of Dhoni, he should think about changes in his team. He have so many resources in outside.He is not beliving in it.If he belives in it, india or CSK wont loose any matches.!! No doubt..He is the only captain we Win WC.~~2nd we can say Gambhir~~ Gud luck Dhoni for future!

  • Dummy4 on June 1, 2014, 12:03 GMT

    ...I cudn't believe dhoni loosing rag proves that dhoni cares more about CSK than India..I think it was his and his management error how they approach the chase..why was Bmac in middle order when he had great opening partnership with smith. Dhoni shud have come to bat instead of jadeja..he batted too low and left without partner in the end. In the chase like that you cant win single handed..U need to fire from both side.One dot ball to get strike next over means u loose one chance of hitting sixes..Can blame hussey for the shot coz it was time to go for shots and sometimes it work out sometimes it doesn't..thats cricket. Dhoni made fun out of his bowling units..who apart from KXIP..restricted every other teams. I still thing ashwin is way overrated..I will prefer Askar patel in team rather than him coz of his composer and batting...Dhoni's comment showed that he was not to blame whereas it was all his and management fault for their exit...

  • Vasudevan on June 1, 2014, 9:28 GMT

    Badree would have been a good check for Sehwag, instead of Faf who contributed very little in this IPL.

  • syed on June 1, 2014, 8:05 GMT

    It shows Dhoni also succumbs under pressure note one but thrice. This will be the Third time in a row that he cannot win the IPL. One player can make a big difference but still you cant blame the bowlers it is the batsmen who failed to chase down the score even after the fastest starts in IPL's history.

  • Dummy4 on June 1, 2014, 6:36 GMT

    Doni has one of the best bowling attacks among all ipl teams. it is not problem with csk bowlers the problem for csk was teams like KXI Punjab had better batsmen than of csk and that is how they defeated csk 3 out of 3 encounters in this ipl. If the csk bowlers are not good then how did those bowlers restrict many other ipl team batsmen around 140 to 150 or so, and it was those fine bowling performances by csk bowlers that helped csk to win many games and they could not do that against teams like kxi punjab etc because kxi punjab had better batsmen. csk had few poor batting performances in this ipl but they still won those games because csk bowlers brought them victories in those games so doni is wrong in criticizing his bowlers.

  • varadarajan on May 31, 2014, 22:06 GMT

    Exactly my observation. Du Plessis threw away his wicket more frequently .Brendon except a couple of innings at the start was also irresponsible, jumping down and trying to hit bowlers even after a six or so. David Hussy also played a rash stroke. To lose the match after a record 100 in power play was just madness due to highly irresponsible batting. And bowlers just could not keep direction. Kings XI batsmen merrily threw their bats around to hit all over ball park knowing well that they were never ever going to get bowled. CSK should have better pacers and as Dhoni said losing Bravo at the start itself was a body blow. Still, don't worry CSK,especially Dhoni, you did very well and we are ALWAYS with you. It is time seniors woke up and resolved to play responsibly.

  • Android on May 31, 2014, 21:02 GMT

    he himself feared n came at 7 and faced 30balls, was in shock whether he is attacking or practising batting. if raina played a one man show them why Dhoni failed. he lacks confidence on himself, to escape from that he pulled out issue of international players

  • Andrew on May 31, 2014, 19:04 GMT

    CSK fans ought to be appalled by the absence of Badree. Being a legspinner he would've been considered as Maxwell's Achilles Heel. He has bowled with a miserly economy in T20Is and continued that consistency this season for CSK. I think at times Dhoni hasn't backed him enough.

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