Shane Watson and MS Dhoni smashed brutal half-centuries as Chennai Super Kings went top of the Indian Premier League with a 13-run victory over struggling Delhi Daredevils. Delhi had lost its momentum in the first 10 overs. Rishabh Pant (79 off 45) and Vijay Shankar (54* off 31) ensured Daredevils get closer to the target but it was not enough as they ended at 198 for five.
With five wins in seven matches, Super Kings are now placed second while Daredevils continue to scrap the bottom despite a morale-boosting 55-run win over Kolkata Knight Riders.
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With a sixth win in eight games, CSK further consolidated their position at the top of the points table. They are tied on 12 points with Sunrisers Hyderabad. Munro, who took seven balls to get off the mark, would then take Asif for two fours and a six in his second over, was beaten for pace as he mistimed a pull to deep midwicket in the fifth over. Providing the ideal anchor to him was du Plessis who scored a run a ball 33 to ensure that Chennai got just the start they needed for.
Dhoni, who came after Watson's dismissal, joined Rayudu in the 14th over. Most of the deliveries on the pads or pitched short, he converted to boundary balls; he hit seven sixes and four boundaries in his 40-ball outing - six of the seven sixes being scored on the leg-side.
The Australian was the dominant partner in CSK's 102-run opening partnership; he contributed 66 runs off 33 balls in that first wicket stand. Dhoni has been in incredible form during this year's IPL and once again showed just how valuable he can be. This was Dhoni's third half-century of IPL-11.
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"It's quite bad, but nothing much can be done because there's not much of a resting period". Fails to get back in time and Dhoni does the rest.
"Death bowling hasn't been good, and if we reach the final, which will be held in small grounds, the margin for error is very small", said Dhoni after the match. I haven't been training much because of that.
An enterprising innings from Pant included four sixes before the impressive Lungi Ngidi removed him in the 18th over.
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CSK were playing after losing to Mumbai Indians and coach Stephen Fleming saying that they had picked a Chennai-based squad and needed to get used to the Pune conditions, Delhi were coming from a emphatic win over Kolkata Knight Riders under new captain Shreyas Iyer.