One of the key reason behind defending champions Chennai Super Kings roaring back to two wins in their last three games in the ongoing 2022 Indian Premier League (IPL) game has been their opening pair. In all their three games, since MS Dhoni resumed captaincy earlier this month, their opening pair has stitched three straight fifty-plus partnerships, two of which have been of three figures. On Sunday, against Delhi Capitals in Navi Mumbai, the pair stitched a 110-run stand to help Chennai win by 91 runs. However, after the win, former India cricketer Mohammad Kaif pointed out a big blunder in Chennai’s tactic this season. (Follow IPL 2022 full coverage)
Devon Conway was touted to takeover Faf du Plessis’ role at the top of the line-up. But Deepak Chahar’s injury affected Chennai’s playing XI selection in the first few games which disallowed Conway’s place in the team after his debut against Kolkata Knight Riders on March 26 where he had scored just three runs. Later, the New Zealand batter left the bio bubble for his wedding.
On return to the XI, Conway scored three straight half-centuries to amass 228 runs in 141 balls at a strike rate of 161.7 and was dismissed only once.
Speaking to Sportskeeda after the game, Kaif opined that dropping Conway after just one failure is a decision Chennai will be regretting as they continue to battle for survival in IPL 2022.
“Conway was dropped after just one failure. The way he has been batting, CSK would be regretting the mistake. They had a very good player in the squad but couldn’t utilize him properly, ” he said.
“Conway is a class player. He has all kinds of strokes in his armory. He plays 360-angle shots, and the bowler doesn’t know what kind of stroke he is going to play.”
CSK are still mathematically alive in the playoff race and the team has managed to register a positive net run rate following their emphatic win against Delhi, which leave them at an advantage amongst other lower-placed sides.
Kaif also hailed the return of Dhoni as captain as an important reason behind the two wins in their last three games.
“Dhoni as captain makes a big difference to CSK. When he walks out for the toss, it’s a different picture. The crowd gets right behind him. Even before the start, he makes an impact on the match. CSK missed his leadership in the first phase. Dhoni has led the team to two wins in three games. He looked in control immediately after taking back the captaincy,” he said.