Monday, May 14, 2012

Chennai Beat Kolkata by Five Wickets

KOLKATA: Not for nothing are Chennai Super Kings double defending champions of the IPL. Faced again with the task of winning their remaining matches for survival, Chennai yawed and swayed between opposite outcomes before Dwayne Bravo’s last-ball six brought them a very important 5-wicket victory over Kolkata Knight Riders, at the Eden Gardens on Monday night.
Kolkata were limited to 158 after they had got off to a solid start and Chennai began their chase splendidly, riding on a 97-run opening partnership between Michael Hussey and Murali Vijay, only to lose their way in the center. The visitors lost 4 wickets, including those of the well-set Hussey and Vijay on the matching score for just 30 runs in a span of nearly 7overs.

The ask rate kept mounting and with 2 overs left, Chennai needed 27 to win as captain M.S. Dhoni took strike against South Africa seamer Marchant de Lange. Dhoni bullied the 1st delivery right over the bowler’s head for 4. The 2nd too found the fence – drill to mid-wicket – and captain brave swung the 3rd ball over long-on for six. De Lange went on to grant 18, but when Dhoni was out on the 2nd ball of Rajat Bhatia’s final over of the match, Chennai appear to have blown their chance.
Five were needed off the final delivery as Bhatia served up a full-toss, which Bravo thankfully clobbered beyond long-on, causing Gautam Gambhir’s facial features to freeze threateningly and pulling Chennai up to fourth place with 17 points – their IPL-V dreams very much alive. Earlier, KKR suffer from a middle order implosion, sliding from 99 without loss to 128 for 5, before ending with a middling 158. Captain Gambhir continual his excellent form racing to 62 off just 43 balls.
His opening Brendon McCollum was run-out and in the after that over Gambhir too departed – playing on against Shadab Jakati.With both the set batsmen dismissed, Chennai began to tense things in the field. Jacques Kallis, Yusuf Pathan and Manoj Tiwary were all out in a hurry and it was gone to Debabrata Das’ neat little cameo to pull Kolkata up to 158.
A win would have taken Shahrukh Khan’s franchise to 1st place on the points table, but the loss ensures that Kolkata complete the night third, one above the team that hoodwink them for a 5-wicket win at the Eden Gardens.

Man of the match

Michael Hussey

Daredevils v Kings XI (20:00 local | 14:30 GMT)
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