• Faf du Plessis stars in CSK win

    The Chennai Super Kings returned to winning ways after they defeated the Royal Challengers Bangalore by 27 runs at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru.

    Chennai batted first and posted 181-3 with Faf du Plessis contributing an unbeaten 33 from 18 balls, while David Wiese took 1-46 for RCB.

    CSK didn’t have the best of starts losing Brendon McCullum to leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal in the second over of the match. But they wrested back the initiative in spectacular fashion with the other opener – Dwayne Smith – and Suresh Raina taking on the RCB bowlers.

    In the eighth over, Smith got stuck into Wiese picking up two sixes and a four, in the process going past 5000 T20 runs. He added one more boundary to his tally before he edged one from Patel to wicket-keeper Dinesh Karthik; he made 39 from 29 balls and hit three boundaries and as many sixes.

    Raina motored along to 62 from 32 balls. The left-hander got stuck into Chahal, hitting him for three successive sixes, before the attempt to send a fourth ball into orbit landed in the hands of Rilee Rossouw at long off.

    RCB tightened the screws thereafter. From 124 for 3 at the end of thirteen overs, CSK could only add 16 runs in the next three overs. Faf du Plessis and Dwayne Bravo picked up three boundaries between them and helped in adding 15 runs in the seventeenth over. Iqbal Abdulla picked up the wicket of Bravo in the following over, while conceding eight runs.

    R Ashwin and Du Plessis hit a four and six respectively as 14 runs were added in the nineteenth over. Mitchell Starc bowled a fantastic over, sending down four dot balls and conceding only three runs as CSK finished their twenty overs at 181 for 8. The visitors had two notable partnerships in the innings; Smith and Raina added 58 runs in seven overs, after which the left-hander was involved in a 54-run partnership with skipper MS Dhoni.

    In their chase of 182, several RCB batsmen got starts, but failed to convert them to any meaningful scores. The opening pair of Rilee Rossow and Manvinder Bisla added 31 – in what would eventually be the highest partnership of the innings – before both batsmen were dismissed by Ashish Nehra in the fourth over. Dinesh Karthik added 28 runs in the company of his captain Virat Kohli before he was done in by a sensational catch by Dwayne Bravo at long on.

    A smart piece of glovework from MS Dhoni, who received a throw from the outfield and whipped off the bails at the striker’s end in a flash, pulled the curtains on AB de Villiers’ budding innings.

    Knight Riders suffer second defeat

    In the earlier game on Wednesday, Sunrisers Hyderabad handed reigning champions Kolkata Knight Riders their second defeat of the tournament after restricting them to 16 runs short of the target. KKR, who conceded 176 runs, were given a target of 118 from 12 overs after rain had delayed the start of the run-chase. But the visitors could only finish at 101 for 4, handing the hosts their second win of the season.

    Morne Morkel took 2-31 in his four overs for KKR.

    In their chase, KKR needed 37 from the final three overs, when the two Kumars – Bhuvneshwar and Praveen – combined to deny the visitors. Bhuvneshwar conceded just five in the tenth over, Praveen – who bowled two yorkers and used the slower delivery to good effect – conceded only seven in the following over, leaving KKR to score 25 off the last over.

    Bhuvneshwar picked up the wicket of Yusuf Pathan, and conceded only eight runs, leading his team to a victory.