The Chennai Super Kings began their defence of the Indian Premier League title in style after they defeated the Royal Challengers Bangalore by seven wickets in the season opening fixture of VIVO IPL 2019.
After MS Dhoni had won the toss and opted to chase, the CSK spinners imposed themselves on the visitors from the word go.
The CSK spin trio of Harbhajan Singh, Imran Tahir and Ravindra Jadeja picked up eight wickets between them and were the force chiefly responsible in bowling out RCB for 70 in 17.1 overs.
The surface at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai wasn’t ideal for T20 cricket; the ball wasn’t coming onto the bat off the quicks, and spinners got the ball to turn considerably even in the first few overs of the contest.
RCB didn’t help their own cause too; several of their top order batsmen – including Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers, who were caught at midwicket – were guilty of not assessing the pitch and of poor shot selection.
Parthiv Patel, who opened the innings and would be last man to be dismissed, was the only RCB batsman to get into double figures; he made 29 from 35 deliveries.
CSK had a few anxious moments in their chase too but they chased down the target in the 18th over.
Apart from the match, a major issue which was circulating on Social Media was the empty stand in MA Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai.
Everyone was asking that why three stands are always empty in this stadium. The three stands have a maximum capacity of 12,000 and each of the three stands, I, J and K have a capacity of 4,000 seats apiece.
These three stands have not been used since November 2011.
These three stands in Chepauk have been under legal issues since their construction. The High Court in Madras put a stay on the use of those stands as TNCA altered with the assessment report for those stands. In fact, a criminal case was also issued against TNCA by the High Court in 2013.
The main reason for the tussle is the gymnasium of the Madras Cricket Club (MCC) adjoining the stands. In 2015, the Supreme Court ordered the demolition of parts of the stands and asked the TNCA to send out the plan to the Chennai Municipal Corporation. Though the TNCA agreed, they are yet to get the necessary permission from the state’s Heritage Committee to start the process.
This is why you will always see those stands empty during all the games that take place in the stadium.
(With inputs from PTI / Sportskeeda / IPL )