Chennai Super Kings coach Stephen Fleming lost his cool and lashed out at those questioning the thought process behind sending Kedar Jadhav ahead of Mahendra Singh Dhoni in their Indian Premier League match against Sunrisers Hyderabad.
CSK lost by seven runs to the David Warner-led side here on Friday for their third straight defeat in the ongoing edition of the lucrative league.
“It is a question?” a fuming Fleming asked at the post-match press conference.
“He (Jadhav) is our number four, Dhoni, primarily, is a middle to backend player, Kedar Jadhav is our number four, he plays a dual role, if we get off to a good start he might move down and let Dhoni up.
“If you lose early wickets then your number four batsman goes in.”
Jadhav faced 10 balls for his three runs.
On the partnership between skipper Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja, which brought CSK back into the game, Fleming said the team needs to be more productive in the middle overs.
“We were in trouble through the middle (part of the innings) and MS (Dhoni) and Jaddu had to take time. They got us pretty close but they probably would want to be a little bit more productive in the middle.
“Obviously, when you have to deal with Rashid Khan’s overs, it is a great challenge as well. Jaddu’s momentum towards the end was encouraging,” he added.
Asked about Shane Watson’s struggles at the top, he said “Both Watson and Jadhav are looking for substantial contributions. Shane can light the fuse at any stage and with Kedhar it is the same.”
“It’s just our fourth game so it’s pretty early in our cycle of form, but there is no doubt there is pressure and they will be feeling it more than what I am talking about.”
He also said CSK were patchy with what they were doing, adding in the last four overs SRH were very good.
“The last four overs in particular, they were very good and we were patchy. And we just lacked a little bit of confidence in the field.
“So there’s little things all around, there’s probably a dozen runs at least that we gave up just with the overthrows or bad movement. In a tight competition, that’s going to cost us and we know that.
“We’ve just got to get it right, got to get a bit of confidence and a bit of game rhythm and guys in form – and that can change pretty quickly. But also, if you don’t address them, then we’ll just slide away,” Fleming added.
The top-order’s struggles, especially not being able to keep pace with the required run-rate, was a concern, the CSK coach admitted.
“Yeah it is a concern and you don’t want to put yourself under pressure. We do need contributions from the top four if we’re going to win this tournament.
“So we need to get some form from some big players at the top, we’re still backing them. It’s a case of getting into the tournament,” he added.
Fleming said CSK had plans for youngsters Priyam Garg and Abhishek Sharma who bailed SRH out of trouble.
“It’s not like the Super Kings hadn’t planned for them. We talked about them. All the bowlers had the information and footage on them and quite a lot of detail was done on them. They played well. That’s youth for you, come out and attack.”