x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 January 2018

Chennai bank on teamwork for revenge on Pune

IPL round-up:Lack of partnerships cost the Warriors while Kevin Pietersen's maiden T20 century helps Delhi Daredevils to victory.

Subramaniam Badrinath, above, and Faf Du Plessis laid the foundation for Chennai's target.
Subramaniam Badrinath, above, and Faf Du Plessis laid the foundation for Chennai's target.

Chennai Super Kings raised their game in front of their home supporters to defeat Pune Warriors, defending 164 with an all-round performance.

Warriors needed 21 off the last over, but the match was more tightly contested than that figure suggests.

Pune had their moments with the bat but could not sustain their partnerships, thanks to some sharp catching and miserly death bowling by the hosts.

Openers Francois du Plessis (58) and Subramaniam Badrinath (57) set the platform with a stand of 116 before captain MS Dhoni powered Chennai to 164 for five with an unbeaten 28 of 12 balls.

"MS batted well towards the end, we needed a big over to get on par but did not get. We will have a look at what went wrong after the game," Sourav Ganguly, the Pune captain, said in the post-match comments.

Pune were always struggling to keep up with the rate and fell short as Nuwan Kulasekara and Dwayne Bravo took two wickets each.

Du Plessis was dropped early on by Murali Kartik and capitalised with a 42-ball half-century, with four fours and one six, though he was then fortunate to survive the narrowest of run-out appeals.

In reply, Steven Smith and Angelo Mathews kept their side in with an outside chance towards the end but the former fell in the penultimate over.

Meanwhile, Kevin Pietersen played to the gallery in New Delhi as he blasted an unbeaten 103 to help Delhi Daredevils score a five-wicket victory over Deccan Chargers and take the top spot on the points table.

The England batsman smashed nine sixes and six fours off 64 balls as Delhi scored 162 for five in 19.1 overs after restricting Deccan to 157 for eight at the Ferozeshah Kotla ground.

Pietersen said at the post-match conference after his maiden hundred in the Twenty20 format. "This is absolutely amazing, the crowds cheering for the teams here," Pietersen said. "Yes, this is my best innings in this format, and I hope to get some more. I would love to have more English cricketers playing here, but I am enjoying playing in India."

Deccan looked set for a huge total and register a first win in the tournament but Shahbaz Nadeem (3-16) and Morne Morkel (3-23) pegged them back with timely strikes. Parthiv Patel (45) and Shikhar Dhawan (44) were the main scorers for Deccan.

Losing captain Kumar Sangakkara rued the shortcomings for Deccan. "It is back to the drawing board, yes, we need to hold on to our catches. We were also 20 runs short, but KP batted brilliantly. We need to play more smartly, from 100 for two [wickets] in 12 overs we needed to get going."

Pietersen shifted gear and struck three consecutive sixes off Jean-Paul Duminy in the 13th over of the innings.

Delhi were struggling at 23 for three at one stage with captain Virender Sehwag and Mahela Jaywardene back in the pavilion, but Pietersen batted himself in before unleashing the barrage of strokes.

* Agencies