Chennai Super Kings coach Stephen Fleming has allayed concerns around captain MS Dhoni’s injury but said all-rounder Ben Stokes will continue to remain on the sidelines for another week.
Stokes played only the first two games for CSK this IPL season before being ruled out of the match against Mumbai Indians on April 8 with a toe injury. Stokes has so far missed four matches.
“Ben Stokes has suffered an injury setback and will be out for a week,” Fleming said at the post-match press conference after CSK beat Sunrisers Hyderabad by seven wickets here on Friday night.
“Stokes, just a setback, I’m not going to go into it, but it’s not major. It’s just that he’s close. He’s working really hard to get right, can’t fault that at all. So, he just needs a little bit of luck,” he added.
Fleming said Dhoni has been “managing his injury well” and there is no concern with him.
“MS is completely fine. He is managing his injury well. He is available. He always keeps the team first. If he knows he can’t contribute because of injury, he would have sat out himself. There is no concern with him,” Fleming said.
Fleming said that Dhoni doesn’t get enough credit for the work he does behind the stumps, calling him an “absolute craftsman” there.
“It’s natural talent. I don’t think he gets enough credit for his keeping but, to be honest, he is an absolute craftsman, absolute masterclass behind the stumps and often goes unnoticed with all the things he does,” the CSK head coach added.
Batters could have done better: Lara
Sunrisers Hyderabad head coach Brian Lara felt his players could have done better with their shot selection in the middle overs.
“When we went out to that strategic time out, that was the discussion. It was a little bit slow, a little bit of spin so it was difficult for the batters. Shot selection could have been different in those middle overs. But we are going to move on from here,” he told reporters.
He credited the CSK bowlers and said they performed brilliantly.
“They bowled well. Credit has to be given. Also, the likes of Theekshana, Jadeja, they are the guys who don’t give you time to use your feet. Sometimes, playing across the line could be difficult.” About the team’s performance with the bat, he said, “As an individual, a batter and a coach you have got to put your hands up if things are not working, and I’m hoping when we look back at the performance... We have pretty mature players who understand they are not doing well and team comes first.” “We are not going to press the panic button,” he added.
Speaking about Harry Brook opening the innings, Lara revealed, “The experiment of trying to get Harry Brook up the order and produce a 100 and if you would ask what team we would want to have at the beginning of the tournament... You can see he (Harry Brook) has intention.” When asked about Washington Sundar’s batting, Lara said, “Washington’s value to the team is both to bowl and bat but we have players who can play at the top positions. With Washington, yes, we want him to be a great all-rounder with both bat and ball. I think it’s going to take time.”
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