Robbed off home advantage for the entire 2018 season, Chennai Super Kings will have to work hard in their adopted home venue here to be a force to reckon with in the ongoing Indian Premier League, said the team’s head coach Stephen Fleming.
Back into the IPL family after serving a two-year suspension, CSK lost their home advantage after just one game in Chennai as the IPL orgainsers decided to shift its remaining home games to Pune in the wake of protests related to Cauvery issue and threats to disrupt more fixtures.
Fleming rued the fact that his players will need time to get used to the Pune pitch. “We are going to be careful that we don’t get carried away by the loss. The biggest thing for us is to get to know the pitch here, it is not Chennai. We picked the side which was going to be Chennai-based so we are learning as much as anyone,” said Fleming after CSK lost by eight wickets to Mumbai Indians Saturday night.
“We have to work extra hard to get home advantage. We have learnt a little bit again today and we have only got a day to make sure we try and get the right combination,” he added.
CSK suffered their first defeat at its ‘adopted home’ in Pune and overall its second in the tournament so far, courtesy a stunning performance by MI batters Rohit Sharma, Suryakumar Yadav and Evin Lewis.
“A score of 190 was a possibility, so for them (Mumbai) to bowl well and drag us back to 170 was good cricket. Another 10 (runs) would have been nice for us,” the former New Zealand skipper said. “He (Rohit) responded well in the 19th over and you are not going to win every game in the IPL. It was good game,” Fleming added.
Sent into bat, CSK scored 169 for 5, a target which MI overwhelmed in 19.4 overs last night. Fleming said they were probably 10-15 runs short of what could have been a winning total. “We were in the fight. (But) we were probably 10 runs, may be 15 runs short with the bat. But we hung in pretty well and created opportunities,” Fleming said.