Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni credited Ravindra Jadeja for taking the pressure off in the death overs as Chennai Super Kings raced to a five-wicket win against Rajasthan Royals in a thrilling Indian Premier League match in Ranchi on Tuesday. Jadeja struck Kevon Cooper for a six at long-off in the 19th over, leaving Chennai to get 12 runs in the last six balls.
Dhoni completed the formalities with two balls to spare after slapping James Faulkner for a six at mid-wicket. Dhoni (26 off 16 balls, 1x4, 1x6) and Jadeja (11 off 6 balls, 1x6) produced 28 runs off 13 balls to take table-toppers Chennai to the winning target of 149. After proving why he is one of the coolest finisher of games, Dhoni complimented Jadeja saying: "The big shot from Jadeja really helped. Otherwise, there would have been a bit more pressure."
"What we wanted to do was take it to the end but they bowled well and made us stretch a bit," admitted Dhoni as Chennai lost two well-set batsmen, Dwayne Smith (44) and Faf Du Plessis (38). Dhoni felt there was scope for improvement as Chennai 's bowlers conceded big runs in a few overs.
"On a wicket like this you shouldn't really go for more than 10 or 12 runs; we had a few overs like that while bowling. It was difficult to score," said Dhoni. Rajasthan skipper Shane Watson said 148 for a good score to defend.
Dhoni said the plan to promote Ravichandran Ashwin to No. 5 partly paid off. Ashwin scored 14 off 16 balls. "We wanted to give Ashwin more responsibility. He can bat well against spinners and can rotate the strike," said the CSK skipper.
Jadeja, who took the big wickets of James Faulkner and Stuart Binny, said batting with Dhoni was a pleasure. "He gives you a lot of confidence. He keeps saying you can do it if you play till the last ball. I always want to do something special in Ranchi."
Chennai will play all their 'home' games in Ranchi this season. Both Dhoni and Jadeja would not mind this as Chennai are virtually sure of a berth in the tournament's last-four.