IPL 2012: Chennai Get Back On Track With Ten-Run Win
Chennai Super Kings 160-6 (du Plessis 42) beat
Deccan Chargers 150-5 (White 77) by ten runs
Indian Premier League 2012, Chennai
Chennai Super Kings ended a run of four matches without a win with a ten-run success over struggling Deccan Chargers that puts them back up to fourth place in the table.
Francois du Plessis top scored as they posted a score of 160 for six and despite a brilliant half-century from Cameron White, Deccan fell short when they closed on 150 for five.
White struck an impressive 77 in 53 balls but Chennai's bowlers held sway and Deccan were left to rue costly drops that allowed du Plessis and Dwayne Bravo to score 42 and 12 not out respectively.
A wicket apiece for Albie Morkel, Ben Hilfenhaus and Suresh Raina and a couple of timely run outs eventually won the day for the reigning champions.
They started strongly having reunited du Plessis (42) and Murali Vijay (14) at the top of the batting order as Michael Hussey missed out.
Vijay looked in good touch, cracking two boundaries before he was caught by Amit Mishra off Veer Pratap Singh before du Plessis combined forces with Raina to put on 64 for the second wicket in quick time.
They were aided by the Chargers, however. Du Plessis was dropped off Pratap Singh, and Raina took full advantage by hitting the same bowler for two big sixes - an illustration of just how quickly mistakes can cost you.
Du Plessis hit two fours and a six while Raina added two fours although he was the next to depart when he was caught by Abhishek Jhunjhunwala off Amit Mishra as by taking pace off the ball, Deccan found some success.
Du Plessis fell to Pratap Singh and off-spinner Jhunjhunwala bowled Morkel for 13 to claim excellent figures of one for 13 from three overs.
One man who was not reducing his pace was Dale Steyn and he delivered a typically economical return of nought for 25 from his four overs, Chennai unable - or perhaps unwilling - to take any risks against him.
Ravi Jadeja (4) instead targeted Ashish Reddy but lofted a catch to Kumar Sangakkara having faced nine balls and when Mahendra Singh Dhoni (34 in 27 balls) tried to smash Daniel Christian in the final over, he was bowled.
Another dropped catch allowed Bravo (12 not out) to take Chennai past the 150-run mark and he hit the next delivery for six as Chennai closed as strongly as they had started.
With the ball, they kept up their good work, Morkel quickly removing Parthiv Patel by knocking out his leg stump for one. However, Morkel missed a gilt-edged chance to take two in as many balls when White chipped his first ball straight back to him but the chance was not held.
Shikhar Dhawan played some fluent strokes, driving elegantly through the covers and quick to punish anything straight by working the ball onto the leg-side.
White wasted little time in making the most of his opportunity but Chennai also found that when spinners Shadab Jakati and Ravichandran Ashwin came on to bowl, the scoring rate slowed, although Dhawan and White reached a half-century partnership in 39 balls.
White used all of his experience and skill to keep the runs flowing at a healthy rate and at the halfway stage, Deccan were sitting pretty at 76 for one.
Dhawan fell in slightly unlucky circumstances when White drove the ball back at Bravo, who didn't get down quickly enough to take the catch but the ball ricocheted off his boot and onto the stumps, leaving Dhawan, who made 36 in 29 balls, short of his ground.
When Kumar Sangakkara (1) was brilliantly caught and bowled by Raina, diving one-handed to his right, Deccan were 85 for three and needing 76 to win from the final eight overs with White joined at the crease by compatriot Christian.
As they settled in, the required run-rate grew but Christian eased some pressure by lifting Ben Hilfenhaus into the stands at midwicket for his first six but Chennai's spinners continued to strangle the batsmen.
White reached his third IPL half-century - all scored this season - and then drilled Bravo down the ground for four to leave Deccan with the tall order of 47 to win in 18 balls.
Chennai continued to keep faith with their spinners but White hit back, just clearing du Plessis' effort at long-on to hit another six and then hitting the next ball even further over long-off. He finished the over with a four through square leg, and with 18 runs from it, they needed 29 in 12.
White's blistering innings of 77 in 53 balls came to an end soon after, however, when taking a second run that wasn't quite available, he was run out by an excellent throw from the deep by Jadeja.
They needed 20 win from the final over and Christian started it well by flicking Hilfenhaus for four but he was unable to bring the game home as Reddy was caught at deep cover by Vijay from the fourth ball of the over, securing the win barring no balls or wides being delivered.
Hilfenhaus did the job and Deccan closed on 150 for five, their slim hopes of making the play-offs almost completely extinguished.
Christian was unbeaten on a valiant 27 not out in 24 balls.
© Cricket World 2012