Chennai Super Kings (CSK) all-rounder Dwayne Bravo on Friday picked experience over youth after the ‘Dad’s Army’ cruised to their fourth IPL title in Dubai. The MS Dhoni-led side beat Kolkata Knight Riders by 27 runs in the summit clash to add another IPL trophy to their cabinet.
Experienced Faf du Plessis hit a brilliant 86 off 59 balls, laced with seven fours and three sixes, to help CSK post 192 for 3 after they were put to bat first.
The 37-year-old South African first put up 61 runs with his opening partner Ruturaj Gaikwad (32) and that was followed by a 63-run stand with Robin Uthappa (31 off 15 balls) for the second wicket. All-rounder Moeen Ali then made a late flourish with a stroke-filled 37 not out off 20 balls.
In response, Kolkata could manage 165 for 9 in their 20 overs with Shubman Gill and Venkatesh Iyer hitting 51 and 50 respectively.
Enduring a batting collapse yet again, Kolkata went from 91/0 to 125/8 in the 17th over to sputter towards the end of the run-chase. Chennai’s bowling unit fired in unison as Shardul Thakur took three wickets while Ravindra Jadeja and Josh Hazlewood got two each.
“Don’t get nervous (coming into a final). Have had a good performance in different phases of the tournament. Faf and Ruturaj standout for us. To have these two guys scoring over 500 runs together. Experience beats youth any day. Going to change the name from Mr Champion to Sir Champion,” said Bravo after the game.
Taking a dig at fellow West Indian Kieron Pollard, Bravo said, “That’s the first thing I’m going to do when I turn on my phone – let Kieron Pollard know this is the 16th (T20 titles he has won). He has some catching up to do. Belief in the squad from management, owners. After last season was really disappointing. Owed it to the franchise, the fans to come up with a better performance.”
Uthappa also reacted to the win and credited Chennai for creating a “secure environment” within the camp. ” I just want to come in and contribute to the team’s success, today we had a good start and it was important for us to take advantage and we had a set batsman (Faf) at the other end and I took it on and got a few shots,” he said.
” I believe it’s your players who are not playing in the eleven that really create the atmosphere within the group and they make sure that they look after the players who are not playing in the eleven and I think that’s one of the biggest takeaways of our success in IPL,” Uthappa, who scored 114 runs in 16 matches this season, said.