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Gaikwad admits CSK fell '50-60 runs short' because of difficult Chepauk pitch

He said injuries and the Impact Player rule compounded their issues in defence of a severely under-par score

Ruturaj Gaikwad made 62 off 48 balls, Chennai Super Kings vs Punjab Kings, IPL 2024, Chennai, May 1, 2024

Ruturaj Gaikwad's 62 took 48 balls  •  AFP/Getty Images

Chennai Super Kings captain Ruturaj Gaikwad pointed to dew as the chief cause for his team's loss against Punjab Kings at Chepauk. The hosts got the worse of the conditions after losing the toss and were restricted to 162 for 7 with only one of their nine batters scoring at a strike rate of over 150.
"Probably I would say 50-60 runs short," Gaikwad said upon being asked about their total at the post-match presentation. "Because of the pitch; we were batting first, the pitch wasn't that great. It got better, dew, plus the Impact Player [rule didn't help] as well.
"Even the last game which we won by 60 [78 against Sunrisers Hyderabad at Chepauk] runs even we were quite surprised. We didn't expect to win by that much margin given the conditions.
CSK were bogged down particularly by Punjab's spinners with Harpreet Brar and Rahul Chahar's combined figures reading 8-0-33-4. On the other hand, Ravindra Jadeja was the only spinner in CSK's arsenal, which was depleted coming into the match as Tushar Deshpande (unwell) and Matheesha Pathirana (niggle) were unavailable.
Their issues were compounded as they had to use Sameer Rizvi as an Impact Player for his batting, with Deepak Chahar pulling up in his delivery stride and walking off after bowling the first two balls of the chase. It left Gaikwad without strike bowlers and allowed Punjab's batters to capitalise.
"It's a real problem," he said. "There are phases where you want to really get a wicket and suddenly you have only two bowlers who can get a wicket. Plus, our spinners are really out of the game given the dew. So, definitely a tough day but things like this happen and still four games to go. I really hope that we will turn it around."
This was CSK's second loss at home this season, and their fixture against Rajasthan Royals on May 12 is the only group game remaining in Chennai. They have lost three of their last four away games and will face Punjab again, in Dharamsala, on Sunday.