Dwayne Smith smashed 66 off 46 © IANS (File Photo)
By Nishad Pai Vaidya
Apr 27, 2014
Chennai Super Kings steamrolled Sunrisers Hyderabad by five wickets in their Indian Premier League (IPL), 2014 encounter at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium. With this victory, Chennai sign off from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and move to India for the next leg of the tournament. This was also Sharjah’s last game at the IPL 2014 with the tournament ready to move to India this week. Chennai did well to restrict Hyderabad to 145 and then Dwayne Smith smashed 66 to help them setup an easy win, albeit some drama at the end.
After Hyderabad elected to bat, the Chennai bowlers put in a disciplined performance to restrict the opposition to 145 for five in their 20 overs. The bowling figures made a good reading with Ravichandran Ashwin recording figures of none for 17 in the middle overs. Although Ben Hilfenhaus was smashed around in his last over by Darren Sammy and Karn, his figures of two for 32 were pivotal as dismissed Shikhar Dhawan and David Warner early in the innings. Mohit Sharma also played a good role in the middle with a spell of two for 27.
MS Dhoni shuffled his bowlers around well during the innings and did not let the Hyderabad batsmen get off and runnings. Aaron Finch was the top-scorer with 44, but he consumed as many as 45 deliveries for that. The other batsmen such as KL Rahul and Venugopal Rao got starts but could not convert it into big ones. In the end, some late hitting by Karn and Sammy ensured that they reach their eventual score.
It was a canter as Chennai chased down 146 with ease. Brendon McCullum and Smith were at it again, smashing a formidable bowling attack all around the ground. It was a slow surface, where batting didn’t seem too easy through the day, considering the afternoon game between Mumbai Indians and Delhi Daredevils, but there were no problems for the Chennai openers.
Both McCullum and Smith looked in complete control. The only time there was any chance for Hyderabad was when McCullum pulled a short one to square-leg, and the fielder in the deep could not get a hand to it as it sailed over his head. And, that carnage continued as they raced to 75 in the first ten overs with six hitting looking all too easy. McCullum fell for 40 as he was bowled by Karn Sharma, but Smith continued to smash it around.
Suresh Raina played a brief innings and went with 20-odd to get. Smith eventually fell when he tried to clear the ground, but holed out to Warner at long-off. His innings off 66 lasted 46 balls with five sixes and four fours. Faf du Plessis then edged Bhuvneshwar Kumar to record a first-ball duck, but all those breakthroughs were too little too late for Hyderabad. The game was all done after the Smith blaze. Chennai should have finished it a lot earlier, but it went down to the last over, in a typical Dhoni-situation. There was some drama at the end with Ishant Sharma bowling Ravindra Jadeja in the penultimate over to make it an interesting plot.
Sunrisers Hyderabad 145 for 5 in 20 overs (Aaron Finch 44; Ben Hilfenhaus 2 for 32, Mohit Sharma 2 for 27) lost to Chennai Super Kings 146 for five in 19.3 overs (Dwayne Smith 66, Brendon McCullum 40; Bhuvneshwar Kumar 2 for 23, Ishant Sharma 2 for 35) by 5 wickets.
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(Nishad Pai Vaidya is a Correspondent with CricketCountry and anchor for the site’s YouTube Channel. His Twitter handle is @nishad_44)