Chennai Super Kings’ spinners put a stranglehold on Brisbane Heat and restricted in the middle overs but Ben Cutting’s cameo (42 off 25 deliveries) helped the Australian outfit to 137 for seven in Group B match of the Champions League Twenty20 (CLT20) 2013 at Ranchi on Saturday. The last over three overs yielded 50 runs.
The eleven overs from the spinners — Ravindra Jadeja (two for 17), Ravichandran Ashwin (one for 10) and Suresh Raina (one for nine off his three overs) didn’t allow Brisbane to get a launching pad to their innings. Brisbane capitulated to the tunes of the Chennai spinners and fell way short of a competitive total. At the toss, Brisbane skipper Hopes expected Heats to score at least 170. The seventh wicket 71-run partnership off 45 balls between Chris Hartly and Cutting gave Heat’s innings an air of respectability.
Brisbane started their innings in a positive fashion when captain James Hopes hit the first ball of the innings on-the-up threading the backward point and extra covers off Mohit Sharma. The Chennai opening bowler made a grand come back dismissing Twenty20 debutant Dominic Michael for a blob. Michael, the left-handed batsman, looked to break free and danced down the track to attempt a big shot but ended up offering a chance to Subramaniam Badrinath at covers.
After the fall of wicket James Hopes and Chris Lynn counterattacked and raced away to an aggressive start. Just when Hopes looked settled , after hitting two boundaries off Morkel , he played an impetuous shot, charging the Chennai all-rounder and attempting to hit him over mid-off. Jason Holder stretched his arms and held onto an easy chance.
The fall of wicket did not perturb Lynn, who was hell-bent on playing his shots. He carted Holder over his head for a six in the fifth over and then outsmarted the West Indian quick by hitting him towards square-leg for a boundary.
Ashwin bowled the final powerplay over. He was hit through the covers for a boundary by Lynn, who skipped down the track and executed the vintage shot.
Jadeja, who went for 74 runs in his four overs so far in the tournament, struck in his very first delivery in the first over after the powerplay. Christian tried to attack Jadeja right from the outset but that plan backfired. Christian mishit the delivery to long-on where Michael Hussey held on to the change unlike couple of nights back where he had butterfingers. Joe Burns was hoodwinked by Jadeja with a sharp turning delivery which was edged to the first slip and caught easily by Suresh Raina.
Lynn didn’t drop the anchor and looked to attack Chennai. He top-edged the carom ball from Ashwin which luckily for him fell between wicketkeeper Dhoni and Suresh Raina who ran in from mid-wicket to hold on to the chance. Lynn failed to survive a conventional leg-spinner from Ashwin as he looked to hoick the ball, having no clue about it. The ball took the outside edge and flew to gully. Heats were precariously placed at 61 for five at the half-way stage.
Chris Sabburg, batting at No. 7, couldn’t get the ball off the square against spinners. He took up 14 balls for his two. He was bowled by Raina off a straight fdelivery. Sabburg tried to close the face of the bat but he was bowled neck and crop. The next seven overs after powerplay overs yielded only 14 runs at two runs per overs which highlights the dominance Chennai spinners had over Heat’s batsmen.
The 18th over of the innings was bowled by Dwayne Bravo. With the ball coming on to the bat Ben Cutting hit two towering sixes to get the momentum back in Heat’s favour albeit slightly. In the next over bowled by Holder, Cutting hit him over wide long-on.
In the final over bowled by Mohit, Cutting hit the first two balls for as many sixes. Hartley hit a boundary and a six before falling off the final ball.
Earlier, Chennai Super Kings skipper MS Dhoni won the toss and elected to bowl. Over the last few games it has been seen the dew factor becomes it very difficult for the bowling sides bowling later at night. Chennai fielded an unchanged playing XI from the last game while Heats dropped Alistar McDermott and Peter Forrest and brought Cameron Gannon and Dom Michael in the playing side respectively.
Brisbane Heat 137 for 7 in 20 overs(Ben Cutting 42*, Chris Hartley 35, Chris Lynn 29; Ravindra Jadeja 2 for 18) vs Chennai Super Kings.
(Sarang Bhalerao hails from a family of doctors, but did his engineering. He then dumped a career in IT with Infosys to follow his heart and passion and became a writer with CricketCountry. A voracious reader, Sarang aspires to beat Google with his knowledge of the game! You can follow him on Twitter here)