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“At no stage did Chennai feel comfortable”: Stephen Fleming on Chennai’s defeat against Lucknow

Stephen-Fleming

Lucknow played Chennai in the 7th game of the Indian T20 League 2022 at the Brabourne Stadium in Mumbai. The pitch for the match was a belter and the two teams made the most of the perfect batting conditions. A total of 421 runs were scored in the match.

Lucknow skipper, KL Rahul won the toss and decided to field first. One of the main reasons for his decision was the expected dew factor. His decision proved to be right as the dew set in even before the second innings of the match. Chennai bowlers struggled to grip the ball throughout the second innings. Thus, they failed to hit the correct length to control the opponent’s scoring rate.

With the ball becoming a soap bar, Shivam Dube was given the task of bowling the very important 19th over of the Lucknow innings. He started the over, looking to bowl slower cutters, but that didn’t work out, as the ball was skidding off the surface. He changed his length and looked to bowl a yorker and thus ended up bowling in Evin Lewis’ hitting arc. The West Indian didn’t miss the opportunity and slammed the all-rounder for two fours and a six of the last three balls of the over. This brought the equation down to 9 runs of the last over and Lucknow achieved the target with 3 balls remaining.

In the post-match press conference, the Chennai coach, Stephen Fleming talked about his team’s poor bowling display. He blamed the dew on the field which made gripping the ball difficult.

“If you looked earlier on, spinning options were taken out of play. Because of the wetness, they played well. So, it was very hard for one: to grip the ball for a spinner and two: to be effective. Early on, we were one over short, but they played well,”-Fleming said.

He further added – “We knew we had to be really accurate. At no stage did we feel comfortable. And that showed in our fielding as well, the conditions were really wet. The guys hung in there defensively very well, proud of the effort.”

Chennai will look to address the issues quickly and return to winning ways after being defeated in the first two matches of the season. They are due to play Punjab in the next match on Sunday, April 3rd.

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