Virat feels helpless, Jadeja leaves CSK camp but the younger lot are upbeat

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Chennai Super Kings MS Dhoni and Delhi Capitals Rishabh Pant during the Indian Premier League 2022 match between Chennai Super Kings and Delhi Capitals, at DY Patil Stadium, in Mumbai on Sunday. (ANI Photo/ Delhi Capitals Twitter)

As the season gets into full flow, we bring to you all the action on and off the field

Our Bureau
Mumbai

The poster boy of Indian cricket Virat Kohli, who is going through an unprecedented lean patch, said during a chat on Wednesday that he felt “absolutely helpless” after his second first-ball duck in the ongoing IPL. Kohli has only 216 runs in 12 innings for Royal Challengers Bangalore. During the current IPL season, he has managed to score a half-century once. Kohli has got three ducks so far this season, two of which have been golden ducks. He said in a video uploaded by Royal Challengers Bangalore, that how much he misses his best friend and former RCB teammate AB de Villiers.

The host of the show jokingly asked Virat about his love for animals and ‘ducks’, to which Kohli replied, “First-ball ducks. After the second one, I actually realised what it feels like to be like you, absolutely helpless. It hasn’t happened to me ever in my career, I think. I have seen everything now. It’s been so long; I have seen everything in this game.”

Speaking about his loyalty to RCB, Virat said, “The perks of loyalty are way more than the perks of captaincy.”

Virat Kohli also went on to say how much he misses his best friend and former RCB teammate AB de Villiers, “I miss him a lot. I speak to him regularly, quite regularly. He keeps messaging me – he was in the US recently watching Golf – Augusta Masters is what I heard it was called. So, he told me he was there experiencing it with his friends and family. We stay in touch – he is very keenly obviously watching RCB and hopefully here next year in some capacity.”

Commenting on Faf Du Plessis, Virat said, “I and Faf have always gotten along really well even before we played together this season because he was the captain of South Africa for a while. Faf is a guy who is very sure of himself, and he has full authority on the field. Sometimes I mention things and tells me ‘No, I don’t want to do that’, which I respect a lot because that obviously makes you gain respect for the person you are playing under.”

“As I said, we have had mutual respect for many years even before he played for RCB because he was captain of South Africa, and always had some nice conversations – pre-match, post-match. Yeah, there was always respect there but now I have gotten to know him much better and he’s a brilliant guy and yes obviously a very good-looking guy,” he added.

RCB are currently ranked 4th in the points table with 7 wins in 12 games. To finish the league stage among the top four teams, they must win at least one of their remaining two games.

Chennai Super Kings skipper Ravindra Jadeja plays a shot during the IPL 2022 match between Chennai Super Kings and Sunrisers Hyderabad, at D Y Patil Sports Stadium, in Mumbai on Saturday. (ANI Photo/ Chennai Super Kings Twitter)

Jadeja ruled out, unfollowed by CSK on social media

Star Chennai Super Kings all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja has been ruled out of the rest of the season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) due to a bruised rib.

“Ravindra Jadeja reported a bruised rib and was unavailable for Chennai Super Kings’ game against Delhi Capitals on Sunday. He was under observation and based on medical advice he has been ruled out for the rest of the IPL season,” said an official statement from CSK. Recently, the all-rounder had relinquished the captaincy of the side to focus on his own game and had requested MS Dhoni to lead the side again, who accepted his offer.

Jadeja has not had a great season so far, scoring only 116 in 10 games at an average of 19.33 with the best score of 26*. With the ball, he has managed only five wickets so far.

The all-rounder, who has been an integral part of Chennai Super Kings for almost 10 years, was unfollowed by the franchise on their Instagram handle. The all-rounder’s sudden departure and being unfollowed sparked rumours of a rift with the franchise.

This has led to speculations on social media that Jadeja left the season abruptly because of some issues with the team.

“CSK management & Dhoni played cheap politics with #Jadeja first Dhoni made him scapegoat captain to blamed for worst season, then sacked him from captain in just 8 matches, then Dhoni criticised his captaincy, then #CSK unfollowed him & now sacked from IPL BEST PLAYER but insulted,” wrote a user on Twitter.

Tilak Varma feels he is ‘very lucky’ to play for MI

Mumbai Indians’ emerging talent Tilak Varma has impressed many with his performance in the ongoing Indian Premier League 2022. Tilak has smashed 334 runs in 11 innings for MI this season with an average of 37.11 and with a decent strike rate of 136.32. During an interview in the MI TV show, Tilak Varma spoke about his cricketing journey and the excitement during the IPL auction.

Tilak Varma said: “From the 1st day of auction I got myself glued to the TV as I was eagerly waiting for my name to flash on the screen and later when I saw me getting selected for MI team it was a moment of a dream coming true. Since, childhood I am watching Rohit sir, Sachin sir and MI has always managed to come back and win the match in any circumstances so that is the one reason why I like MI so much.”

Speaking about his cricketing journey, Varma said, “I started my cricket journey when I was just 11 years old. My coach, Salam Bayash is the main person in my life who encouraged me to play cricket and taught me how to play in every situation. He plays a very important role in my life. If it was not him, I wouldn’t have been playing cricket today so all the credit goes to him.”

He further spoke about how happy he was being associated with Mumbai Indians, Varma said: “I am very lucky to play for Mumbai Indians because they had legendary cricketers in the team like Mahela sir, Sachin sir. I am very lucky to be picked by the MI team as I got to learn a lot and also got a chance to implement them in the matches.”

Rajasthan Royals Prasidh Krishna celebrates the dismissal of Royal Challengers Bangalore Virat Kohli during the Indian Premier League 2022 match between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Rajasthan Royals, at Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, in Pune on Tuesday. (ANI Photo/Rajasthan Royals Twitter)

MS Dhoni welcomes win against DC

While Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni was happy with Chennai Super Kings’ (CSK) comprehensive 91-run win against Delhi Capitals (DC) here at the Dr DY Patil Stadium on Sunday, he felt that it would have been better if had it come earlier in the tournament.

“The big-margin win helps, would have been better if it had come earlier. But this was a perfect game. The batters did well,” said MS Dhoni after victory. After losing the toss and being put in to bat things did not go as per plan for the defending champions but they still managed to score 208/6 in 20 overs and bowl out the opposition for 117 in 17.4 overs.

“I wanted to win the toss and field first but this was a game where you’d want to lose the toss,” said Dhoni.

The four-time champions scored 200 plus for the fourth time in the season, but it was not as easy according to the skipper. Dhoni also praised openers Devon Conway and Ruturaj Gaikwad who scored 110 runs for the opening wicket.

“The ball stops and comes and behaves only after 13-14 overs. The way the openers batted, runs on the board helped. And we had to make sure the opposition’s big hitters did not get going,” explained Dhoni.

Ishan Kishan thinks his side will ‘make it right’ next season

Mumbai Indians wicketkeeper batter Ishan Kishan has said that the side would ‘make it right’ in the next season of the Indian Premier League. “Ups and downs are very much a part of this game. Yes, we will lose matches, there will be matches where we would not perform, but what matters is how we keep the process right throughout the season. We want to win matches, we are giving our best, but unfortunately, we lost many close matches this season. This happens, and I think we will make it right next season,” said Kishan during a pre-match conference before their game against Chennai Super Kings. Mumbai Indians have had a terrible season this time around. The five-time champions has looked nowhere as dominating as their other successful seasons, winning only two games out of eleven and sitting at the bottom of the points tally.

The wicketkeeper-batter admitted that he lost focus while trying to finish the game well for his side instead of giving them a good start.

“What worked well for me was, initially when I started the tournament, I was not over-thinking, I was just going and batting, like I used to do,” Kishan said ahead of Mumbai’s next match, against Chennai Super Kings at the Wankhede. “My focus was on giving a good start to the team. But I think later on, somewhere I was trying to finish the game… maybe I lost my focus in the first six overs,” he said.

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