Ruturaj Gaikwad reveals decision to send Ajinkya Rahane as opener in CSK's IPL 2024 match vs MI | Crickit
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Ruturaj Gaikwad reveals decision to send Ajinkya Rahane as opener in CSK's IPL 2024 match vs MI

Apr 15, 2024 11:30 AM IST

CSK's decision to open with Ajinkya Rahane failed miserably with the batter only managing to score five runs off eight deliveries.

Chennai Super Kings defeated arch-rivals Mumbai Indians at the Wankhede Stadium in a classic encounter on Sunday. The Yellow Army posted a mammoth 206-run total for the home favourites. The Hardik Pandya-led side could only manage to score 186 runs despite a sprightly ton from Rohit Sharma which went in vain.

Chennai Super Kings' Ajinkya Rahane plays a shot during the IPL 2024 cricket match between Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians(PTI)
Chennai Super Kings' Ajinkya Rahane plays a shot during the IPL 2024 cricket match between Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians(PTI)

Earlier in the day, the five-time former champions made an astonishing move to their formidable batting line-up after sending the experienced Ajinkya Rahane to open the innings in the place of captain Ruturaj Gaikwad.

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The move, however, failed miserably with Rahane only managing to score five runs off eight deliveries. The right-hander was dismissed by Gerald Coetzee in the second over after failing to get past Pandya at mid-on.

ALSO READ: Why Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings are playing each other only once in IPL 2024

As Gaikwad walked into the middle at no.3, he ensured that he got the better of MI bowlers. The youngster hammered 69 runs off just 40 deliveries which included 5 fours and 5 sixes. The CSK fans were also treated to a masterclass from MS Dhoni who could only play four deliveries but smashed MI’s skipper Hardik Pandya for three sixes to take his team past the 200-run mark.

MI began the chase in fine fashion with 70 runs from their first ten overs before CSK’s ace bowler Matheesha Pathirana dented their hopes by scalping four big wickets. The Sri Lankan slinger began with the dismissal of left-hander Ishan Kishan on his very first delivery followed by another huge wicket of Suryakumar Yadav on the third. He then went on to dismiss skipper Hardik Pandya and bowled an outstanding 18th over, conceding only six runs. In the very same over, he also dismissed MI’s destroyer Romario Shepherd with a toe-crushing yorker which also paid dividends to CSK's victory. The young gun was also awarded the player of the match for his performance.

Gaikwad on Rahane’s opening move.

Following their fourth win of the season, skipper Gaikwad talked about why he had sent Ajinkya Rahane to open the innings alongside Rachin Ravindra. The youngster revealed that Rahane was carrying a bit of niggle and was sent to fetch as many runs as possible in the powerplay.

“Jinks (Ajinkya Rahane) was carrying a bit of a niggle, so thought it was better for him to open. I'm fine batting anywhere, plus it is the added responsibility as the team captain." Gaikwad said during the post-match presentation.

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