Humidity and losing toss cost us the match: Dhoni

MS Dhoni said hot and humid conditions at Chepauk and losing the toss were instrumental in his team's 10-run defeat at the hands of Rajasthan Royals.

updated: June 06, 2008 17:32 IST
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Chennai Super Kings captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni said hot and humid conditions at Chepauk and losing the toss were instrumental in his team's 10-run defeat at the hands of Rajasthan Royals on Saturday.

"The weather was the factor. It was hot and humid and conditions were tough. It was the first day match after so many late matches under lights. Being professionals, you cannot afford to complain about it," he said at the post-match press conference.

Having been pushed to a do or die situation to progress to the next stage in the tournament, Dhoni said, "We need to win against the Deccan Chargers on May 27 to enter the semifinals. The Mumbai Indians and Delhi Daredevils match will be in the back of our minds. We cannot ignore that match result."

He said his batsmen batted fabulously and it was a close game. "It was not an easy target. It was a close game and we played fabulously. We batted and fielded well but our bowling was not up to the mark excepting in the last four or five overs.

"Generally, I am happy with my bowling attack. At least we have a settled attack now and they have to improve a lot. I am seeing signs of their improvement," he said, adding that Albie Morkel, Parthiv Patel and Suresh Raina batted well.

"The match would have gone our way but we missed it in the last one over when we had our chance."

Victorious team captain Shane Warne said 200 plus score was a par score. "We could have finished at 220 but we were able to get only three runs in the 19th over. Both sides played pretty well."

"At one stage we thought Chennai will win with an over to spare. Parthiv Patel's wicket turned the tide in our favour," he said.

The Aussie attributed the win to team effort with batsmen and bowlers doing their jobs well backed up by good fielding.

"Despite resting four of our key players, we managed to win. Youngsters showed good coordination. Graeme Smith, Asnodkar set the tone for our innings and Kamran Akmal, who was like a dynamite made good use of a perfect batting conditions. Sohail Tanvir was exceptionally good as he bowled well through out and took two vital wickets in the end overs," he said.

"Against Dhoni, the strategy was to field a player in backward point and bowl short and wide. Just before he got out, we brought the mid-off up and he lofted a slower delivery to be out" Warne said of the team strategy to dismiss key opposition players.

Warne signed off saying Smith has a slight hamstring niggle and may not play in the next game.

"We have good depth and we can make it up for Smith's loss and send Akmal up the order. We will continue with our experimentation and try out few new things."