Disciplined DC bowlers restrict CSK to 136/5

By PTI

DUBAI: A disciplined performance by Delhi Capitals bowlers restricted Chennai Super Kings to 136 for five despite a 43-ball 55 not out from the seasoned Ambati Rayudu in their Indian Premier League match here on Monday.

Rayudu reached his fifty when he slashed Anrich Nortje over point for a boundary, following a six over deep extra over in the innings’ 19th over, from which CSK scored 14 runs.

However, Avesh Khan bowled a fantastic final over in which he conceded only four runs while taking the wicket of Mahendra Singh Dhoni (18).

Rayudu smashed five fours and two sixes during his stay in the middle.

A major part of DC’s bowling effort was a far cry from pacer Nortje’s horrendous first over when he conceded 16 runs, with nine off them coming off a leg bye and a bye that Rishabh Pant couldn’t get his hand to despite a diving attempt.

In between, Ruturaj Gaikwad was given out lbw, but the decision was overturned after the batsman reviewed as TV replays showed the ball was missing the leg stump.

Faf du Plessis got two boundaries on either side of the wicket against Avesh Khan as CSK raced to 26 in only two overs at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.

There was swing on offer but DC’s bowlers were not able to get their act right until left-arm spinner Axar Patel struck when du Plessis’ attempted pull shot was held by a diving Shreyas Iyer in the deep mid-wicket region.

The in-form Gaikwad welcomed Kagiso Rabada with a drive straight down the ground, even as Robin Uthappa, playing this game in place of Suresh Raina, walked into the middle.

Nortje removed Gaikwad in the fifth over when the batsman failed to connect his pull shot for Ravichandran Ashwin to complete a neat catch.

From scoring over 25 runs in the first two overs, CSK found themselves ploughing along at 48 for two at the end of the six power play overs.

CSK were 69 for four in 10 overs but their bigger concern at that of time was that they lost two more wickets — Moeen Ali to the impressive Axar and Uthappa to Ashwin’s carrom ball.