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IPL: Dhoni was the game-changer, says Harbhajan

Bangalore: Mumbai Indians skipper Harbhajan Singh admitted that Mahendra Singh Dhoni's whirlwind 20-ball 51-run knock took the game away from them and praised the Chennai Super Kings for playing like champions in the IPL eliminator.

"Obviously, we are disappointed, but cannot change the result, CSK played like champions, Dhoni's innings was the game-changer, took it away from us," Harbhajan said after Mumbai Indians were knocked out of the tournament following a 38-run defeat against Chennai.

"We could not do too much about his innings, we have not achieved as much as we should have. The reason for removing myself from the attack was to get RP Singh a bowl, first ball he bowled, the edge should have gone to hand and missed," he added.

Dhoni in action against MI. PTI

Winning captain Dhoni, who was also adjudged the man of the match for his innings, praised his team and especially pointed out S Bardinath for his contribution in the win.

"We were just watching and enjoying the games when we were done with our league stage, all the results went our way.

"A lot of credit to Badri and Hussey. Badri is an unsung hero, he batted very well. Later on me and Bravo could do well with the bat," he said.

Asked about his trademark helicopter shot which fetched him a massive six in a James Franklin over, Dhoni said: "The helicopter shot was because of the tennis ball cricket."

"I used to play from 17-18 yards and the bowlers sent down a lot of yorkers but not an easy shot to play either, could end up hitting the ankles as well."

His teammate Dwayne Bravo of West Indies, who blasted 33 off 14 balls and then scalped two wickets for 10 runs, said: "Batting with Mahi makes my job easier, I know his ability to strike the ball. It wasn't a typical Bangalore wicket. We were very pleased with it."

Asked what he said to Kieron Pollard after dismissing him, Bravo said: "Two days ago he [Pollard] sent me a message asking me to pack my bags and go home ...it was my turn today to tell him."

PTI

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