The FM Gold Channel of All India Radio features a daily evening program called Sports-Scan at 8.30 PM Indian Standard Time. The narrators usually invite known experts, who specialize in various sports. These specialists air their views on past, present and future sporting events. On Wednesday the CSK were already batting, when the program began. Rajasthan Royals had won the toss and chose to field. The Sports-Scan expert talked about the batting depth, which CSK have but he said that CSK bowling this season has lacked penetration. He specifically singled out Ravindra Jadeja and said that his bowling did not have the edge and wondered why opposition batsmen should give Jadeja so much respect.
While the program was still some minutes from its 8.45 PM conclusion, CSK had lost Brendon McCullum to an absolutely sensational catch by Steven Smith after scoring 6 runs. McCullum had mistimed the shot and the ball was flying away from three men on its hunt in the midwicket area. Coming out at the last instant, Steven Smith dived with both hands stretched forward and when the ball was just about to fall, completed the catch with quicksilver action. Dwayne Smith, however, continued in his own rhythm and when he fell as the second wicket at CSK’s total of 59 in 8th over, his own contribution was 50 off 28 balls. In addition, Smith’s knock was peppered with 6 fours and 3 sixes. At this juncture, 17 balls had been faced by either McCullum or Suresh Raina and 1 run had come off a wide ball. Thus, in sharp contrast to Dwayne smith’s whirlwind 50, other two batsmen contributed just 8 runs off 17 balls!
Pretty soon, Raina, du Plessis and MS Dhoni also departed to some tidy bowling and smart fielding by RR and CSK were reduced to a woeful 74/5 in 11.1 overs. It was at this point that Jadeja and Mithun Manhas began a rebuilding act for CSK. The two of them added 27 runs in 22 balls, before Manhas was snapped up by Abhishek Nayar, when he tried to cut a slower ball from Rajat Bhatia. 101/6 in the 15th over was too low a total for a side, credited with great batting depth. Jadeja and Ashwin did their best and carried the final score to 140 with Jadeja remaining unbeaten on 36 off 33 balls. In any case, the score was far from challenging against Rajasthan Royals.
When RR came on to bat, Abhishek Nayar needlessly ran himself out in the 2nd over. It seems someone told Ravindra Jadeja about Sports Scan expert’s opinion of his bowling capabilities and he probably decided to prove the expert wrong last night and bowled the middle overs to great effect. RR lost the cream of their batsmen by the 7th over, at which point the score-line read 44/4 and by the 14th over the entire batting line up was consumed, when James Faulkner got out as the seventh wicket. Ravindra Jadeja had already taken 3 wickets at this stage and added one more to his tally, when he bowled Tim Southee to reduce RR to 80/8. It would come as no surprise, if someone found the Sports-Scan expert swallowing his pride. For RR, Dhawal Kulkarni kept fighting till the end and remained not out for 28, when the RR innings folded at 133 in 19.5 overs. As CSK won their second match by 7 runs, Jadeja’s super efforts with the ball made CSK’s moderate total look enough. Earlier Jadeja had top-scored with 36 and his 4 wickets for 33 runs must have made him an undisputed choice for the player of the match award.