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IPL 2023: Ruturaj Gaikwad’s 92 takes Chennai Super Kings to 178/7 against Titans in the opener

Ahmedabad, March 31 ( : IPL 2023 – Ruturaj Gaikwad’s 50-ball 92 guided Chennai Super Kings got off to a great start in the 2023 Indian Premier League with a competitive total of 178/7 in the opener against defending champions Gujarat Titans at the Narendra Modi Stadium. Ruturaj Gaikwad was the star of the show, scoring a breathtaking 92 runs off just 50 balls.

A Cautious Start

Chennai had a slow start, with only two runs coming off the first over. However, Gaikwad hit Titans’ skipper Hardik Pandya for two boundaries in the second over, kickstarting the innings. Shami came to attack in the third over and claimed his 100th IPL wicket by dismissing Devon Conway.

Ruturaj Gaikwad’s Heroics

After Conway’s dismissal, Gaikwad shifted gears and hit debutant Joshua Little for a back-to-back boundary and a maximum. Moeen Ali joined him, and they took 15 runs off the over. In the next over, Moeen hit a four, and Shami sent down a no-ball. Moeen took full advantage of it, slicing it over the long-off boundary for a flat six. He then pulled it away through midwicket for four more.

In the sixth over, Pandya brought Rashid Khan into the attack. After a dot ball, the spinner almost got Moeen, who missed a sweep, and Rashid appealed for LBW, which the former successfully reviewed. He then danced down the pitch and lofted it over Rashid’s head for a boundary. Rashid struck right back to dismiss Moeen, reducing CSK to 51/2 after the powerplay.

The next over Gaikwad hit Pandya for back-to-back maximums before Rashid claimed his second in the eighth over, removing Ben Stokes. Gaikwad brought up his 11th IPL fifty with a magnificent six off the bowling of Alzarri Joseph. He completed his half-century off just 23 balls with five maximums and three boundaries.

Gaikwad continued his stunning innings mostly with boundaries, showcasing his impressive skills. Ambati Rayudu joined the party, hitting a brilliant six over midwicket. A couple of balls later, Gaikwad went for a six, but Kane Williamson took an impressive catch before going over the ropes, hurting his right knee in the process.

Chennai’s Loss of Momentum

Titans’ bowlers managed to put a leash on CSK’s run rate with just 19 runs coming off the next three overs. Joseph came into the attack in the 18th over and denied Gaikwad a century as he got him on a full toss. Gaikwad was looking to whack that away to the fence, but couldn’t get much elevation, and Shubman Gill at long-on was quick to take an impressive diving catch, ending Gaikwad’s outstanding 92-run inning.

CSK lost another wicket in quick succession when Joseph trapped Ravindra Jadeja. In the penultimate over of the inning, Shami created a chance to trap Shivam Dube, who went for a pull against a short ball but got a top edge towards fine leg.

Dhoni’s Vintage Style

In the final over of the inning, MS Dhoni showcased his vintage style as he dispatched the ball over deep square for a towering six. CSK managed to post a competitive total of 178/7 in their 20 overs.

Brief scores: CSK 178/7 in 20 overs (Ruturaj Gaikwad 92, Moeen Ali 23; Rashid Khan 2-26 Alzarri Joseph 2-33) v Gujarat Titans.

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