The second phase of the IPL 2021 kick-started yesterday (19th September) at Dubai Cricket Stadium between the two most successful teams in the history of the tournament (Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings). Both the teams displayed great skills and performance and gave fans everything to cheer about. But in the end, Chennai Super Kings were better among the teams and tasted a 20-run victory to go at the top of the points table.
When Kieron Pollard came out for the toss for MI against CSK, few eyebrows were raised as to where is Rohit Sharma and why is he not playing? However, at the toss itself, Mumbai Indians’ stand-in skipper said that the Hitman is fine, which gave the sense of relief to many fans.
With Rohit Sharma not playing the first match, his availability for the second match was in question but MI’s head coach Mahela Jayawardene revealed that the right-handed batsman is fit to play the next match and was rested in the first match as the team management felt he needed rest to be fit for the rest of the tournament.
While addressing the press conference, Jayawardene confirmed the same and also gave an update about Hardik Pandya’s fitness.
“Rohit was batting and doing his running, after coming back from the UK, we probably felt he needed extra few days so he should be fine to play the next game. Hardik was training, had a niggle, so precaution and giving him extra days, not nothing serious,” Jayawardene said
Opting to bat first, Chennai Super Kings didn’t have the greatest starts to the match as they were reduced to 24/4 inside the powerplay. The duo of Ruturaj Gaikwad and Ravindra Jadeja then join hands and bailed their team out of the trouble, stitching 50-plus partnerships between them. After the latter of the all-rounder, the opening batsman took the charge of MI bowlers and scored runs all around the ground. His knock of unbeaten 88 runs along with an 8-ball 23 run cameo by Dwayne Bravo helped MS Dhoni-led side put a target of 157 runs.
Chasing the target, Mumbai Indians openers Quinton de Kock and Anmolpreet Singh looked aggressive but failed to cash on the start they got. After that defending champions never looked in the touch as they kept losing wickets at regular intervals. Even though Sourabh Tiwari scored a half-century but he was struggling to find his timing and also didn’t got desired support from the other end. For CSK, Bravo and Deepak Chahar took 5 wickets between them and helped their team win the match by 20 runs and go on the top place at the points table.