ANI Photo | “Never felt any pressure”: Skipper Ruturaj Gaikwad on leading CSK in IPL 2024

Newly appointed Chennai Super Kings skipper Ruturaj Gaikwad, who started his captaincy with a victory in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 season opener, said he did not feel any pressure while leading the team.
Fine knocks by Rachin Ravindra and Shivam Dube and a fiery four-wicket haul by Mustafizur Rahman helped defending champions CSK start their Gaikwad era with a six-wicket win over RCB.
With the win, CSK extended their superb home record against RCB, taking it to 8-1 Chennai’s in favour. This is the 8th consecutive win for CSK at Chepauk and the longest winning streak for any team against an opponent at a venue in IPL.
“I’ve always enjoyed it (captaincy), never felt it as an additional pressure. I had experience on how to handle it, never felt any pressure, and obviously had Mahi (MS Dhoni) bhai as well. I think everyone in our squad is a natural stroke player, I think even Jinks (Ajinkya Rahane) is playing really positively. Everyone knows their roles and which bowlers to take on. Role clarity really helps. Two-three things to work on, everyone batted well but I think if someone from the top 3 batted till the 15th over it would’ve been even easier,” Gaikwad said in a post-match presentation.
Gaikwad said his team was in total control from the start and believed they played really well in the end.
“Total control, I would say, right from the start (apart) from 2-3 overs. Would have loved 10-15 runs less but I think they played really well towards the end. I feel that was a big turning point to get Maxwell and Faf out. We got three quick wickets and it helped us control the next overs, that was the real turning point,” he added.
Recapping the match, RCB opted to bat and at one point, was reduced to 78/5, despite a brisk start by skipper Faf (35 in 23 balls, with eight fours). Virat Kohli had a disappointing outing with the bat, scoring 21 in 20 balls with a six. Anuj Rawat (48 in 25 balls, with four boundaries and three sixes) and Dinesh Karthik (38* in 26 balls, with three fours and two sixes). Mustafizur (4/29) was the pick of the bowlers for CSK. RCB scored 173/6 in 20 overs.
In the run chase of 174 runs, Rachin Ravindra (37 in 15 balls, with three fours and three sixes) provided a brisk start to CSK. RCB managed to take some quick and crucial wickets, but Shivam Dube (34* in 28 balls, with four boundaries and six) and Ravindra Jadeja (25* in 17 balls, with a six) guided the defending champions to a six-wicket win with eight balls to spare.
Cameron Green (2/27) was the top bowler for RCB. Mustafizur took home the ‘Player of the Match’ award. (ANI)

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