Chennai Super Kings got their act together in the nick of time to eke out an eight-run win over Royal Challengers Bangalore in an Indian Premier League match that produced 444 runs on Monday. Devon Conway slammed 83 off 45 deliveries while Shivam Dube blazed away to a 27-ball 52 as CSK posted an imposing 226 for six after being asked to bat first. In reply, RCB ended at 218 for eight. RCB skipper Faf du Plessis (62 off 33 balls) and Glenn Maxwell (76 off 36) gave a scare to CSK till they were at the crease, sharing 126 runs for the third wicket to raise hopes of a famous win.
RCB endured a horrible start as they lost Virat Kohli who played on to an Akash Singh delivery. There could have been more success for Akash had Maheesh Theekshana not dropped a skier from Mahipal Lomror at mid-off.
Lomror though didn’t last long and departed after being caught by Ruturaj Gaikwad at cover point. Maxwell meant business as he smashed Akash for two sixes in the next over, even as Du Plessis hit Despande for two fours and a six.
Du Plessis displayed his array of strokes and Akash bore the brunt of his wrath in the next over, conceding two boundaries and a six.
Du Plessis and Maxwell were at their brutal best and didn’t spare any CSK bowler, finding the fours and sixes at will.
While du Plessis raised his fifty off just 23 balls, Maxwell’s half-century came up in 24 balls. The Australian then struck a huge six as RCB raced to 121 for two in 10 overs.
Theekshana had the last laugh as he foxed Maxwell who hit a skier in search of the big shot and MS Dhoni did the rest to break the dangerous partnership. To make matters worse for RCB, du Plessis departed in the next over, handing Dhoni another skier off Meen Ali.
Needing 58 off the last five overs, veteran Dinesh Karthik kept RCB in the hunt with some cheeky boundaries and was also handed a life by Ruturaj Gaikwad off Deshpande in the 17th over. But Karthik was then dismissed by Tushar Deshpande (3/45) to end RCB hopes.
Earlier, it was a struggle for RCB’s bowling attack as the CSK batters went hammer and tongs from the onset.
CSK started on a bright note thanks to Conway who first whipped Wayne Parnell to the mid wicket boundary in the second over and, three balls later, lifted the South African over the fine leg fence.
Gaikwad struggled as he departed in the third over, finding Parnell in the outfield off a Mohammed Siraj delivery.
Conway was unperturbed as he went about his business in style, scooping Vijaykumar Vyshak over the keeper for a four, and a ball later, Rahane (37 off 20) executed a perfect hook shot to send the ball into the stands.
Rahane looked in a mood to prove a point as he clobbered Parnell for two boundaries and a six to pick up 15 runs from the sixth over.
Introduced into the attack in the seventh over, Maxwell was hit out of the park by Conway. The duo looked in ominous form as they gathered a boundary or a six in all most every over of their partnership.
Conway was at his best as he smoked Wanindu Hasaranga de Silva over midwicket for a huge six in the 10th over, before the Lankan spinner broke the dangerous-looking partnership by cleaning up Rahane. Conway brought up his second fifty on the trot with a double in the same over.
The New Zealander then smashed Hasaranga for a boundary as CSK reached 97 for two at the halfway stage. Shivam Dube marked his arrival at the crease with a huge six off Maxwell, while Conway continued his onslaught and smashed rookie Vijaykumar for back-to-back fours.
It turned out to be a nightmare outing for young Vijaykumar as Conway clobbered the bowler over fine-leg boundary for another maximum.
Dube was not to be left behind as he slammed Harshal Patel over long-on for another six. The Indian batter carried on and carted Siraj over midwicket for a four and then hooked a slower bouncer from the bowler over square leg for a maximum.
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