Chennai: Chennai Super Kings pacer Deepak Chahar has agreed with his captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni that the team needs a better pitch at home despite winning all their games here so far. CSK captain Dhoni has criticised the Chepauk pitch after registering a seven-wicket win over Kolkata Knight Riders on Tuesday, terming it as low scoring. And Chahar, who returned with impressive figures of 3 for 20 against KKR, blamed the nature of the wicket on hot and humid weather conditions.

“I’m happy I performed well, but obviously we’re looking for a better wicket,” Chahar told reporters at the post-match press conference on Tuesday night. “Nobody wants this type of a wicket. It is because of the soil and heat. It’s too hot here and the pitch curators are doing their best job to give us a good track. But, at the end of the day you can’t help it,” he added. Dhoni, while speaking at the presentation ceremony had earlier said, “we don’t want play on wickets like these” after CSK won another low-scoring game at Chepauk.

Chahar said he had received a lot of messages after Dhoni apparently got angry at him for bowling two waist-high full tosses in the final stages of the game against Kings XI Punjab on April 6. “I have got thousands of messages asking the same question. I think he (Dhoni) was angry. If I were the captain I would have also got angry. The 39 runs runs suddenly became 31 runs off 12 balls. He was angry on the selection of the ball. The selection of the ball was not good,” he said with a smile.

Asked about getting the opportunity to bowl in powerplays, the Rajasthan seamer said he was more confident now after having performed well in last year’s IPL and played for India. “I have been bowling in the powerplays only. (Dwayne) Bravo is injured, so we didn’t have someone to bowl at the death overs. I was prepared for it. This time in last two matches I have got the opportunity,” he said.

“I was preparing for it. Last year we played a lot of matches in Pune where the conditions were helpful for fast bowling. There was seam and swing. This year we knew that we will be playing a lot of matches in Chennai, I practised in that sense. I am a better than last year. “At this level you need confidence.

Last year’s performance gave me a lot of confidence. Playing for India also helped,” Chahar added. KKR leg-spinner Piyush Chawla, who took a wicket and two catches including a running one to dismiss Suresh Raina, said the visitors didn’t misread the wicket. He said the batsmen played too many shots at the start, which hurt them badly.

“It’s not that we misread the wicket but yes, we played too many shots at the start. We lost three extra wickets in the powerplay. That’s how it goes in the shorter format. It happens. Sometimes, the shot that went straight to the fielder would have gone in the gap,” Chawla said in defence of the team’s batsmen. He felt that a total of 135-140 or more would have been ideal.’

Chahar in record books
Chennai Super Kings (CSK) pacer Deepak Chahar on Tuesday set a new bench mark for bowling the most number of dot balls in an innings in the history of the Indian Premier League (IPL). The right-arm seamer returned figures of 3-20 from four overs against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), bowling as many as 20 dot balls in the process.

Chahar broke the record of 18 dot balls in an innings jointly held by Rashid Khan and Ankit Rajpoot. Chahal accounted for the wickets of Chriss Lynn (0), Robin Uthappa (6) and Nitish Rana (0) after KKR were put into bat. The 26-year-old bowled five dot balls in the 19th over to keep the big-hitting Andre Russell quiet.

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