Chennai Super Kings coach Stephen Fleming has explained that the reason the management decided to send Kedar Jadhav ahead of hitters Dwayne Bravo and Ravindra Jadeja was because of the batsman’s ability to play spin well. Chasing 168 to win, Jadhav walked out to bat at the fall of MS Dhoni’s wicket but laboured to seven off 12 balls, struggling to connect bat to ball.
The end result was CSK choking in their chase and slumping to their fourth defeat of IPL 2020. Jadeja tried with 21 off 8 balls with three fours and a six, but it wasn’t enough to prevent CSK from going down. Jadhav was trolled heavily on social media following the defeat.
“At the time, we thought that Kedar could play the spinner well and dominate, while Jadeja was there to come and finish. But in the end, there was too much work to do and we fell short,” Fleming said at the press-match conference.
“We’ve got so much batting resources. Kedar is a late middle to late batter for India. We could have gone a whole lot of different ways. Today Kedar had some balls but that didn’t work out. You always put players in different areas and that’s just when you have so much batting talent to choose from. It’s one of the things we look at, but it’s all in hindsight.”
Fleming agreed that the plan backfired, but felt that in scenarios, the team should be able to finish off close games.
“If we could have got one of those players to 75-plus and continued that partnership for another maybe four or five overs, the game might have been a lot different. Kolkata hung in there long enough to put pressure on us and we just couldn’t accelerate. We feel disappointed that we let it slip.”
Following the defeat, people, especially CSK fans started clamouring for the return of Suresh Raina, whose absence they claim is being felt. Fleming however, is content with the balance of the team despite CSK scoring just 14 runs between overs 11 and 14.
“The performances like today, with the experience we have got, we should have put it away. We have got a lot of batsmen anyway so the balance is very good with the six bowlers. I don’t think an extra batsman is going to help,” he said.