Chennai Super Kings (CSK) spinner Ravichandran Ashwin on Sunday said skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni doesn’t have any preconceived notions and goes into the game blank and just operates on his instincts as to who is bowling well and how the wicket is behaving.
CSK marched to the top of the Indian Premier League (IPL) points table with a comfortable 97-run victory over Kings XI Punjab here on Saturday night.
Spinners Ashwin (2/14) and Ravindra Jadeja (3/22) were at their peaks, snaring crucial wickets to set their team on its way to a comprehensive victory. They were well supported by veteran pacer Ashish Nehra (2/16).
“MS is someone who bells the cat as it goes around. He doesn’t have any preconceived notions and goes into the game very blank. Once he is there, he just operates on his instincts as to who is bowling well and how the wicket is behaving,” Ashwin was quoted as saying by iplt20.com.
“He has managed some good overseas bowlers in the past as well, the likes of (Muttiah) Muralitharan, (Doug) Bollinger and (Ben) Hilfenhaus. So, I don’t think it makes much difference to him. But as an Indian bowler it definitely makes a difference to have an Indian captain. It makes you more comfortable and confident coming in.”
Spin has always been CSK’s strength but this time around the pacers are also coming good.
“In a bid to make the Indian players better equipped on the overseas tours, there is more grass left on the wickets this time. It is too early to comment how much effect it will have on the tournament but the grass on the wicket is definitely aiding the fast bowlers with the new ball,” said the offie.
Among the pacers, 35-year-old Ashish Nehra has been superb in the ongoing season, picking up 12 wickets from six games.
“He (Nehra) did great service to the Indian team from 2006 till 2011. He was one of the lynchpins of our 2011 World Cup winning side as well. What I admire about him is that he never sulks,” said Ashwin.
“He picks up the new ball, bowls in the powerplay, bowls in the death, whether it is AB de Villiers or Yuvraj Singh he is up against. He never complains and always gives his 100 percent. To add to that, he is a left-armer. He is someone you would love to have in your team.”