The Wankhede Stadium turns into a sea of blue each time Rohit Sharma’s boys take the field. The fans take up the mantle of the 12th man and their collective roar dampens the spirit of the opposition. However, on Saturday night, the blue army had been intercepted and the yellow brigade was out to nullify the home advantage.
Chennai Super Kings’ Dwayne Bravo stunned the home crowd with his late onslaught and provided the team’s loyal fan base a perfect gift on the team’s return to the competition after a two-year absence.
So touched was he to see their overwhelming support, Bravo dedicated the nail-biting win to the fans. “It is always good to start well and to beat Mumbai in their backyard is a special feeling. This is for our fans. They have waited for this moment for two years. This was an away game but there were so many CSK fans. It has been a special game for all of us and we deserved to win and I am happy we won,” he told iplt20.com.
Hopes of upsetting Mumbai Indians were almost dashed. The Super Kings had slipped to 118-8 and needed 47 from 18 balls. Bravo caused a pandemonium when he hammered 27 in an over and followed it by smashing three sixes in the penultimate over bowled by Jasprit Bumrah.
“I have worked hard in the nets and spent a lot of time with our batting coach Mike Hussey. I was hitting the ball well in the nets. It was a matter of taking what I did in practice into the game. I was looking to keep calm and not worry about what was going around me. It worked tonight. Hopefully, I can continue the same form and same vein and build on this momentum.”
He succumbed on the final ball of the 19th over but the team was revived when an injured Kedar Jadhav returned. Needing just seven in the final over, Kedar endured three dot balls before sending the fourth delivery of Mustafizur Rahman for a six and then followed it up with the winning shot, a boundary.
Bravo was all praise as Kedar batted in pain to seal a memorable victory. “Kedar is a special player. We needed only seven runs. Even though he was injured, he is smart and experienced enough to know what is needed. Even though he played two dot balls, there was no panic. When he hit that six, Stephen Fleming was thinking it would be Super Over. I told him ‘No, we got to win the game.’ To reach this far is God’s work and we deserve to win. I am happy that Jadav, despite being injured, put the team first, and we could win.”
The all-rounder was happy that his incredible effort came against his first team in the IPL. “Mumbai Indians gave me the first opportunity in the IPL. It is always good to play against them, as they are one of the better teams in the tournament. It feels good to do well against them. I am happy.”
Source : iplt 20