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Qualifier 1: MS Dhoni “looked” into his eyes “before he went to bat”, says Stephen Fleming

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MS Dhoni remained unbeaten on 18 as CSK defeated Delhi Capitals to enter the final of IPL 2021.© Instagram

MS Dhoni was at his best against Delhi Capitals as he scored 18 runs off just six balls to send Chennai Super Kings to their ninth final in Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 Qualifier 1. In the match, Dhoni came ahead of in-form Ravindra Jadeja, with CSK needing 24 runs off 11 balls. He hit Avesh Khan for a six over mid-wicket off the second ball and then hit three fours in the last over to take CSK over the line with two balls to spare. After the match, CSK head coach Stephen Fleming said that MS Dhoni “had that look in his eyes” and he was not going to take the captain back.

“I will tell you what, when the captain looks into his eyes and says I will go, it is well documented that he did, and today was one of them. Therefore, I am not holding him Back and we saw his result,” Fleming said in a post-match press conference.

Fleming said that Dhoni had a long technical discussion with him before going to bat.

“There was a lot of conversation. I think we talked over a long period of time in these 20 overs. There was just a lot of technical discussion, how it’s supposed to work, how it will unfold,” Fleming said.

In the match, CSK won the toss and invited Delhi Capitals to bat at the Dubai International Stadium.

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Fifties from Prithvi Shaw and skipper Rishabh Pant took them to a competitive total of 172/5.

In reply, Ruturaj Gaikwad and Robin Uthappa shared a 110-run partnership before Dhoni got out to end the game.

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