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Dhoni clears the stadium

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Statuesque Smith Chennai Super Kings had just lost Brendon McCullum in the third over of the innings, when Dwayne Smith chopped a ball from Joel Paris towards short third man. Suresh Raina set off straightaway from the non-striker's end, and with the ball going behind the wicket, he was the batsman running to the danger end. Smith was ball-watching, though, and by the time he turned around and sent Raina back he was halfway down the pitch, and the throw to the bowler's end eventually caught him a good foot short of the crease. Two overs later, Smith was unmoved at the other end when Mithun Manhas nudged the ball wide of short midwicket and set off for a quick single. This time, only a wayward throw from the fielder saved Manhas as he turned and ran back from halfway down the pitch. The deception Super Kings were struggling against the spinners, and Dwayne Bravo was barely able to pick Brad Hogg's variations. A googly in Hogg's first over had already beaten his attempted cut. Now, in his third over, Bravo came on strike having scored 15 off 20 balls. His eyes lit up when Hogg dropped it short, and he shaped for the full-blooded pull, possibly aiming for the stands behind the leg side fence. But the ball turned the other way, away from Bravo, out of his reach, and he was left frozen at the highest point of his backlift as the ball thudded into the keeper's gloves. Bravo's expression didn't let on what he felt, but delight was scribbled all over Hogg's face in a wide, childlike grin. Outta here After a dry spell in the middle overs, Super Kings' run rate was climbing thanks to Ravindra Jadeja and MS Dhoni. Still, at the start of the penultimate over, they were only 115 for 5. Bowling what should have been the fifth ball of the over, Yasir Arafat delivered a high full-toss from around the wicket. Dhoni swivelled, met the ball with the meat of the bat, and sent it soaring into the top tier of the stands behind the deep backward square leg boundary. Next ball was another full-toss, not as high this time, but it travelled even further, over deep square leg, over the roof of the stands, and into the city beyond. The arm-ball A proper, seam-up arm ball from the finger spinner is a rare sight in the modern game. Very often, commentators mistakenly say the bowler has bowled an arm-ball when the ball goes through with the angle either as the result of natural variation off the surface or because the bowler has sent down a topspinner or under-cut the ball. R Ashwin, however, sent down the genuine article to bowl Ashton Agar in the fourth over of Perth Scorchers' chase. Agar had cut him away for four the previous ball, and Ashwin responded by bowling what would have been an outswinger if delivered by a seam bowler - seam upright, pointing towards fine leg (for the left-handed batsman), sent down with a bit of backspin. It pitched pretty much where the previous one had done, and Agar - not spotting the change in grip - rocked back to try and cut Ashwin again. Instead of turning away from him, the ball swung into Agar, cramped him for room and hurried through to crash into the stumps. Karthik Krishnaswamy is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo RSS Feeds: Karthik Krishnaswamy © ESPN Sports Media Ltd.



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