Moeen the game-changer for CSK, says Parthiv Patel

Mumbai: Former India wicket-keeper Parthiv Patel has lavished praise on Chennai Super Kings (CSK) all-rounder Moeen Ali, saying that the English cricketer was the “main game-changer” for his team during the now-postponed season.

The Mahendra Singh Dhoni-led franchise were in second place on 10 points behind Delhi Capitals — who were leading the table with 12 points — when a breach in the bio-bubble forced the IPL season to be postponed.

Moeen, a left-handed batsman and right-arm off-spinner, aggregated 206 runs at an average of 34.33 and an impressive strike rate of 157.25 in the six innings. The England all-rounder also took five crucial wickets and had a superb economy rate of 6.16.

“I think Moeen Ali was the main game-changer for CSK. He can open, he can bat at No. 3, which he did really well. He carried on the momentum that Faf (du Plessis) and Ruturaj (Gaekwad) gave. It was good to see him performing so well,” Patel told Star Sports.

“It was important to make a collective comeback. That is exactly what has happened with CSK. Yes, openers did very well but I think the middle order was the key.”

Patel also gave credit to Dhoni’s captaincy, saying that the former India skipper “deciding the batting order wisely and promoting Moeen Ali at No. 3” was tactical thinking.

“Everyone thought Suresh Raina will bat at No.3 but it was Moeen Ali. He knew what changes he needed to do. Everyone was thinking that MS Dhoni will come and bat at No. 4 or No. 5. He took the backseat, he knew that there are guys who are batting well and they should get more number of overs,” said Patel.