Chennai Make It Four In A Row

MS Dhoni (left) hit the winning runs as the Chennai Super Kings registered their fourth straight win
MS Dhoni (left) hit the winning runs as the Chennai Super Kings registered their fourth straight win
©REUTERS / Action Images

Chennai Super Kings 146-5 (Smith 66) beat
Sunrisers Hyderabad 145-5 by five wickets
Indian Premier League 2014, Sharjah

The Chennai Super Kings kept the pressure on Indian Premier League 2014 leaders the Kings XI Punjab by beating the Sunrisers Hyderabad by five wickets in Sharjah.

At the Sharjah Cricket Stadium, they scored 146 for five in 19.3 overs to overcome their opponent’s total of 145 for five. 

Chasing a not-too-tall total, Chennai were given a rousing start once again by their openers Dwayne Smith and Brendon McCullum. By far the best opening pair in the tournament, they added 85 runs for the first wicket off only 65 balls.

McCullum scored 40 runs off 33 balls, with three fours and two sixes, and was the first to go in the 11th over when he was bowled by young spinner Karn Sharma (1-35).

Smith carried on though, and got to his half-century off just 37 balls, with four fours and three sixes. He went on to score 66 runs off 46 balls, hitting two more sixes, as Chennai got to the 100-run mark in the 13th over, the chase all but over.

However, Suresh Raina (14) fell cheaply and then Smith was dismissed in the 16th over, 20 runs short of the target.

Faf du Plessis (0) and Ravindra Jadeja (6) went without much bother as well, but skipper MS Dhoni held firm to take them home without much ado, scoring 13 not out off 14 balls (one four).

Bhuvneshwar Kumar (2-23) and Ishant Sharma (2-37) took two wickets apiece but couldn’t prevent Chennai winning with three balls to spare.

Earlier, the Sunrisers Hyderabad won the toss and elected to bat first. But they got off to a poor start with skipper Shikhar Dhawan (7) and David Warner (0) fell cheaply, the latter out to a horrible umpiring decision.

Opener Aaron Finch and youngster KL Rahul then rebuilt the innings with a 52-run partnership for the third wicket. In doing so they brought up the 50-run mark in the eighth over, good time considering the early loss of wickets.

But just when they were looking to open up, Smith (1-11) broke that partnership. Thereafter Venugopal Rao (13) and Finch fell in regular intervals, not allowing them enough momentum to get to a high total.

Darren Sammy scored 23 unbeaten runs off 15 balls, with two fours and one six, while Karn Sharma struck 17 not out off 7 balls, including two sixes, to at least take them to a competitive total. Ben Hilfenhaus (2-32) and Mohit Sharma (2-27) were the wicket-takers for Chennai.

With this win Chennai moved to eight points, equal with Kings XI Punjab, but stayed second having played an extra game.

Sunrisers Hyderabad stayed put on the penultimate spot with just two points from four matches.

© Cricket World 2014