IPL 2023 Qualifier 1: Did MS Dhoni intentionally waste time for Matheesha Pathirana?

Xtra Time Web Desk: Chennai Super Kings defeated Gujarat Titans by 15 runs to cruise into the final of IPL 2023 at the Chepauk stadium on Tuesday. But the home team’s victory was overshadowed by a major controversy towards the end of Gujarat innings.

The incident happened at the start of the 16th over when umpires were seen having a chat with MS Dhoni. It appeared that CSK skipper was taking things slow so that his impact player of the game Matheesha Pathirana could bowl that over. The fast bowler was off-the-field for a while and needed to be involved in the match for 4 minutes before being allowed to bowl.

However, it is not clear if Dhoni intentionally chatted with his teammates to waste time. It seemed Dhoni was ready to get penalized by the BCCI for the slow-rate offence. The incident sparked a controversy as fans claimed it was against the spirit of the game.

 As far as the match is concerned, batting first Chennai Super Kings posted 172/7 in 20 overs while riding on a fantastic 60 off 40 by Ruturaj Gaikwad and 40 off 34 by Devon Conway before Ajinkya Rahane (17), Ambati Rayudu (17) and Ravindra Jadeja (22) carved out superb cameo to take the four-time IPL winners to a competitive total in Chennai.

Chasing 173, Gujarat Titans lost Wriddhiman Saha (12) and Hardik Pandya (8) early in the innings before losing Dasun Shanaka (17) and David Miller (4) to restrict them to 88/4 in 13 overs. Though Shubman Gill played a watchful 42-run knock off 38, the defending champions fell short by 15 runs and will now play the Qualifier 2 against the winner of Eliminator 1 (Lucknow Super Giants vs Mumbai Indians) at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Friday.

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