Cape Town: Oct 16, 2012
Dhoni, who promoted himself to number four, hit two fours and as many sixes in his knock after coming at the halfway stage of the innings after his side was sent into bat at the Newlands in the Group B match.
Chennai lost wickets at regular intervals and looked like they would settle below 150 but the 50-run stand from 4.2 overs between Dhoni and S Badrinath (27 not out) for the sixth wicket saw them go past that mark.
The last two overs yielded 27 runs, with the penultimate bowled by Dirk Nannes, producing 19 and that saw Chennai reach a challenging total.
Badrinath was the second highest scorer while all the other batsmen, except for Albie Morkel (4), contributed in the 20s.
For the Lions, Aaron Phangiso grabbed two wickets for 17 runs from his quota of four overs while Sohail Tanveer, Nannes, Chris Morris and Zander de Bruyn took a wicket each.
The Chennai openers Faf du Plessis (25) and Murali Vijay (22) began on a confident note with the former launching Nannes for a huge six in the second over and then gave the treatment to Tanveer with three fours from the next over.
Vijay, who played second fiddle so far, then struck an effortless six off Nannes to take Chennai score to 43 for no loss at the end of fifth over.
The breakthrough for the Lions was provided by Morris with Phangiso taking a stunning catch to get rid of du Plessis who consumed 20 balls for his 25.
Phangiso, who had dismissed Sachin Tendulkar in Lions' previous match, ran back from the point region, dived full-length and pouched the ball before thudding himself into the ground.
Suresh Raina (20) hit a six off Phangiso as soon as he came in and then punished de Bruyn for a couple of fours before he fell to the same bowler after a brief stay at the crease.
Raina flat-batted a harmless back-of-a-length delivery in the air for Lions captain Alviro Petersen to take an easy catch in the last ball of the 10th over. Raina hit two fours and a six in his 16-ball 20.
Chennai, who were 69 for two at the halfway mark, were dealt with another blow just two balls later with the well-settled Vijay being dismissed by Phangiso in an LBW decision. Vijay faced 25 balls for his 22 and hit two fours and a six.
It was then left to captain Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja (21) to take Chennai ahead and the latter spanked de Bruyn for two sweetly-timed fours. Dhoni was not to be left behind as he smashed Chris Morris for a straight six.
Jadeja was out in the 15th over off Phangiso and the next over Nannes ended Albie Morkel's brief stay at the crease before Dhoni was out in the penultimate ball of the Chennai innings. (PTI)
Brief Scores: Chennai Super Kings 158 for 6 in 20 overs (MS Dhoni 34, S Badrinath 27*; Aaron Phangiso 2 for 17) vs Highveld Lions