It was billed as a Virat Kohli vs MS Dhoni matchup. But what it really turned out to be was a mismatch of sorts as once again MS Dhoni showed what huge gulf there is between Virat Kohli “The Captain” and MS Dhoni “The Captain”. True the pitch was bad (ok, to be fair it was horrible). True no one expected it to play this bad but there was one fundamental difference between the two teams.
CSK came to the battle with a plethora of top-class spinners (and that’s not even counting Jadhav and Raina) on a pitch which was always expected to be slow while for the same track RCB had a Umesh Yadav, a Navdeep Saini and a Mohammed Siraj. This was a clear case of grossly misreading the pitch. The assertion not only stems from picking the fact that they picked the wrong combination but also from the way RCB batted.
It just didn’t seem like there was any sense of application or even acumen involved in the batting and maybe we’re being a bit too critical of the team but it just seemed like everyone came in with a suicide wish. Shimron Hetmyer’s run-out was a horrific brain-fade moment when the team actually needed him to just put the bat on ball for a few deliveries. AB De Villiers, you could see was struggling to time it even on the ball he was dropped by Tahir (just a ball before he got out) and even then he went again for the aerial route.
You’ve got to wonder what if either of those two, considering the conditions, would have actually dug themselves in for 3-4 overs. The whole game would have turned on its head. At the toss, something that both the Captains did agree on was the fact that the pitch was slow and going to offer turn. On such a pitch if you field three Fast Bowlers and a fast bowling all-rounder then it raises questions of what the thinking was behind the selection.
After the match, and to an extent after the recent series against Australia, there is a begging question that needs to be answered. If Dhoni is the better captain and he was always going to play the next World Cup, did it make sense to take the captaincy from him and give it to Virat? Food for thought.