As predicted, Zinta did smile although despite high scores as match finished with 7 balls remaining, so it could not be called a close match. Chennai Super Kings played as if they wanted to repeat the 10-wicket winning performance over Kings XI Punjab in the last IPL, played at Mohali. Their new openers Brendum McCullum and Dwayn Smith added 123 runs in 12.4 overs. Batting first they ensured to be the first team of the tournament to score 200-plus runs of IPL 2014. But, Kings XI started the tournament with a morale boosting high chase!!!
- 10th match in IPL where both teams scored 200+ runs.
2nd time in IPL when 200+ score was successfully chased. CSK def MI chasing 202 in 2008 at Chennai.
7th 100+ opening wicket partnership by CSK.
100th T20 match of Raina.
Chennai’s top 8 have all played over a 100 T20 games.
Electing to bat first to beat the heat of afternoon at Abu Dhabi their openers added 71 runs in first 6 overs and 123 runs in 12.4 overs. Brendum McCullum was the first one to return scoring 45-ball 67 runs with 4 4s and 5 6s. For a change Dwayne Smith’s strike rate was ahead of a batsmen like Brendum McCullum. He also scored 43-ball 66 runs with 3 6s and 6 4s and returned when he failed to slog successfully against Balaji. Raina, who played his 100th IPL game, played cautiously, but Dhoni made sure the team capitalizes on opener’s onslaught.
Kings XI opened the bowling with Akshar Patel (1/34 in 4 overs) and Awana (0/28 in 2 overs). Johnson was the first replacement and their only star bowler, except international like Balaji. But Johnson went for 39 in 3 overs and his best over was his 4th over when he bowled to Dhoni and Raina in 18th over giving away only 8 runs and completing his quota at 0/47.
Balaji (1/25), Rishi Dhawan (0/21 in 3 overs), Maxwell (0/23 in 2 overs) were the other suffering bowlers of Kings XI Punjab.
Kings XI Repeat Their Record
With chase of 206 runs that too against their tormentors of 2013 Chennai Super Kings, the batsmen of Kings XI decided to create their history of chasing 200+ score for the first time. They have failed thrice before despite crossing 200 runs while chasing. Sehwag and Pujara started the chase. Although Sehwag could score only 19 runs of 10 balls (with 3 4s), and Pujara could score only 13 runs on 10 balls (with 2 balls) but they got the run rate above 10+. Both were back to pavilion in 3.4 overs as score read 38/2. Akshar Patel was promoted but could score only 2 runs and score read 52/3 in 5.1 overs.
As David Miller joined Maxwell in the middle, the show started. Both added 115 runs for 4th wicket in 10.3 overs. Maxwell was the key destroyer scoring 95 runs in only 43 balls with 2 6s and 15 4s. David Miller exploded after his departure and remained unbeaten on 37-ball 54 runs with 3 6s and 3 4s, continuing from where he left in IPL 2013 of helping his team chase the huge totals. Captain Bailey alsso chipped in 10-balll 17 runs with 2 boundaries and they won with 7 balls remaining.
For CSK, finally Nehra had the best economy with 1/24 in 3 overs. while Mohit Sharma (0/35 in 2.5 overs), P Negi (0/37 in 3 overs), Jadeja (0/43 in 4 overs), Dwayn Smith (1/25 in 2 overs) and key bowler Ashwin (2/41 in 4 overs) were hit without worry.
Maxwell The Player of the Match
He just knows one way of playing and that is hitting. He started with a boundary on his first ball and by the time he fell short by 5 runs from his first IPL century getting out on 95.