x Abu Dhabi, UAE Thursday 20 July 2017

Indian Premier League: Chennai Super Kings thrash Delhi Dardevils to leapfrog to fourth

Woeful hosts collapse to lowest total in the tournament this season for sixth straight loss after batsmen set the tone for Chennai.

Michael Hussey and his partnership with MS Dhoni set up the platform for Chennai's onslaught. AP Photo
Michael Hussey and his partnership with MS Dhoni set up the platform for Chennai's onslaught. AP Photo

Toss Chennai, chose to bat
Chennai M Hussey 65 n.o, Dhoni 44, Raina 30; I Pathan 1-30
Delhi Jadhav 31; M Sharma 3-10, Ashwin 2-18
Man of the match Michael Hussey (Chennai)

The season of woe continued for Delhi Daredevils, who came up with another timid display against Chennai Super Kings at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium.

The bowling continued to bleed runs and the batsmen again failed to live up to their billing, as a comprehensive 86-run loss kept them winless and rooted to the bottom of the table after six games.

Chennai had blasted their way to 169 for 4. Delhi's chase fizzled out even before the power play overs ended. With the heart of the batting - David Warner (1), Mahela Jayawardene (6) and Virender Sehwag (17) - back in the pavilion at 39 for 4 from 5.1 overs, the game was as good as over.

While Warner and Sehwag fell to reckless strokes, Jayawardene went from lucky to unlucky in the matter of two deliveries.

He was first squared up completely by a Chris Morris delivery and Mahendra Singh Dhoni completed a regulation catch, only for the umpire to turn down the appeal. Two balls later, he was adjudged leg-before to a ball that would have comfortably missed leg stump.

Sehwag holed out to deep midwicket off the very next delivery, and that was pretty much that. Delhi were eventually bowled out for 83 in 17.3 overs, with Mohit Sharma, the Haryana pace bowler, returning figures of 3-10.

Chennai, who were setting a target for the first time in this year's competition, approached the game with a sense of calm, unlike in previous matches where they had to make a late charge after the top order misfired. They started solidly courtesy of Michael Hussey (65 not out) and Suresh Raina (30), who set the platform with a 60-run second-wicket stand, before Dhoni launched a brutal assault that fetched him 44 from just 23 balls.

The drilled strokes down the ground and the trademark helicopter shot were prominent. Some poor fielding from Ajit Agarkar, who put down a regulation catch at long-off while he was on 17, also helped his cause as Chennai plundered 109 off the last 10 overs.

For Delhi, Kedhar Jadhav (31) top-scored for a second consecutive game, in a match of few consolations. For Chennai, it was a third win in five matches.

Shashank Kishore is sub editor with Wisden India.

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