Chennai Super Kings got into the IPL Finals for 2023 by beating the defending winners, Gujarat Titans, by 15 runs on Tuesday at Chennai’s MA Chidambaram Stadium. Ruturaj Gaikwad led CSK’s innings with 60 runs (44 balls, 7 fours, and 1 six), giving Gujarat a score of 173 to beat.
The Titans couldn’t keep up, and they were bowled out with 157 runs on the board. Shubman Gill’s 42 runs (38b, 4×4, 1×6) were the most for them. This is Chennai’s 10th time in the IPL Finals, and it’s the first time they’ve beaten the Gujarat Titans since the club started in 2022.
MS Dhoni’s IPL record as captain is even better now that he has led Chennai to their 10th Finals. He has won four titles so far, and he is now one step closer to his fifth. Suresh Raina, an IPL expert at JioCinema, praised Dhoni’s ability to regularly lead teams to this late stage of the IPL.
“Look at how they got to the Finals. They’ve been there 14 times in 10 seasons. MS Dhoni kept it simple. He gets credit, and Ruturaj (Gaikwad) told me that CSK wants to win the title for Dhoni. India as a whole wants Dhoni to do well in the IPL. But what we saw today is that it is hard to beat Chennai on this ground… Mahendra Singh Dhoni got his name because everything he touches turns to gold.
Hardik Pandya getting out in the sixth over was a big reason why Chennai won this game. IPL expert Parthiv Patel talked about how Dhoni carefully told Maheesh Theekshana what to do so that Pandya’s wicket would fall.
“MS Dhoni tried to tell Theekshana to bowl inside the stump and treat the off-side like a ring because they didn’t give Hardik any room and there were six fielders on that side, so he couldn’t hit the ball from below and find the gap. He could only hit it over the top, but the ball was already on the stick, so he had to make his own space. He lost his wicket because of this. MS Dhoni knows better than anyone what his team needs at that exact moment and which bowler is needed than anyone else. He knows that, which is why this team keeps coming back and why every player knows what MSD has done for them.
The Super Kings are hard to beat, especially at their home field, where the Qualifier took place. IPL expert AB de Villiers said that teams are scared of CSK and Dhoni when they go to the Chepauk Stadium. “I feel there is an intimidating factor,” he said. Whether it’s because of the ground or the MSD factor, teams coming to play think they have to play great cricket to beat them. But if you look at the scores, you see that you usually lose by small amounts. It’s the little things, like getting 10 or 15 runs or not getting a no-ball, that can turn a game on its head. MSD and his team usually do well when they play at home or in big Finals. You’ll see what they come up with when they play.