Suresh Raina and David Hussey’s unbeaten stand for the fourth wicket helped Chennai Super Kings to beat Mumbai Indians by seven wickets and progress to qualifier.
MI were short of 20-25 runs after they batted first and lost quick wickets towards the end.174 on any wicket was a tough ask but at Brabourne stadium it was not a par score. CSK needed a solid opening partnership to get them going and that is what Dwayne Smith and FAF du Plessis did. Smith was lucky early on to survive a plumb lbw appeal off Praveen Kumar but that did not bog him down and he continued to thrash bowlers. FAF du Plessis too joined in and played some good shots.
At the end of Power Play CSK were moving along at a rate of 10 runs per over, but first over after the fielding restrictions Harbhajan Singh struck and gave double blow to CSK. He removed both the openers first he had Smith (24) caught at boundary ropes and then two balls later he removed du Plessis (35) leaving CSK bothering at 64-2.
Brendon McCullum returned to CSK fold and batted at number four. He hit two towering 6s before Pragyan Ojha had him stumped for 14 runs and at that time it looked like Mumbai Indians will fight down the wire, but an unbeaten 89-run stand off just 56 balls for the 4th wicket between Suresh Raina and David Hussey took the game away from Mumbai Indians. The duo looked in fine touch and kept scoring with ease.
Raina during his innings crossed 400 run mark in IPL and became the first batsman to do so, he also notched up his 22nd IPL fifty. Hussey played a perfect partner to Raina and shifted gears once he stared to find his feet.
Both these batsmen accelerated when victory was insight and thus handed CSK a seven wicket win. Raina finished unbeaten on 54 off 32 balls while Hussey too remained unbeaten scoring 40 off just 29 balls.
Harbhajan Singh (2-27) and Pragyan Ojha (1-34) were the only bowlers who managed to pick wickets.
With this win Chennai Super Kings will now face Kings XI Punjab in Qualifier 2 and the winner will then meet Kolkata Knight Riders in the finals.
Man of the Match: Suresh Raina
Brief Scores: CSK 176-3(S. Raina54*, H. Singh227) beat MI 173-8(L. Simmons 67, M. Sharma 3-42) by seven wickets.