XtraTime Web Desk: In a mouthwatering clash, Chennai Super Kings today beat table topper SunRisers Hyderabad by 8 wickets thanks to a brilliant century from Ambati Rayudu (100*) in Pune today. With this win they have won 8 games from 12 matches and almost sealed the playoffs with 16 points in their kitty.
After a string of big scores, Rayudu finally scored a ton in this season’s IPL. Before this his highest score was 82 against Royal Challengers. Chasing a big target of 180 runs to win against SunRisers Hyderabad he got good support from his fellow opener Shane Watson who scored 57 runs from 35 deliveries. They both shared a partnership of 134 runs for the first wicket which helped the hosts to win the game. After his departure Suresh Raina fell cheaply on just 2 runs. After that CSK skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni came at the crease and took the side to victory without losing any further wicket. Beside Rayudu, Dhoni remained not out on 20 at the end of the game.
Rayudu carried his bat through the innings as he crossed 500 runs this season. He is on third spot among top run getters with 535, behind Sunrisers captain Kane Williamson (544) and Kings XI Punjab’s Lokesh Rahul (537).
The win by former champions CSK also snapped Sunrisers six-match winning streak this season.
Bhuvneshwar had another rare poor day in office, after the treatment he got from Delhi Daredevils’ Rishabh Pant, as he leaked 38 runs from his four overs without any success.
Rashid went wicketless and conceded 25 runs while Bangladeshi left-arm spinner Shakib Al Hasan was hit for 41 runs for no success. Medium pacer Siddharth Kual leaked 40 runs from his three overs as the Sunrisers bowlers had a rare collective off day today.
Earlier, opening batsman Shikhar Dhawan and captain Kane Williamson continued their top form this season as the two batsmen struck fluent half centuries to take Sunrisers to 179 for 4 after being sent in to bat.
Dhawan and Williamson continued from what they had left in their last match in Delhi as the duo yet again scored the bulk of Sunrisers runs with a 123-run stand for the second wicket.
The Sunrisers were slow to start off with just 29 runs in the powerplay overs and also lost the wicket of opener Alex Hales (2), mainly due to a fine spell of bowling by medium pacer Deepak Chahar who opened the bowling and had figures of 4-0-16-1.
Even experienced players Dhawan and Williamson found it difficult to score off Chahar.
At the halfway stage, the Sunrisers were 62 for 1 and with wickets in hand they shifted gears in the second half of their innings to add 115 runs in the last 10 overs.
Ravindra Jadeja and Harbhajan Singh bore the brunt as they were given some treatment by Dhawan and Williamson who hit a few fours and sixes off them. Harbhajan gave way 26 runs from his two overs, while Jadeja leaked 24 from the same number of overs.
Dhawan and Willaimson then rained in fours and sixes as they added 68 runs in five overs after the halfway stage to take their side to 130 for one at the end of the 15th over. The duo, however, departed in quick succession to give a twist to the match.
Dhawan was out in the last ball of the 16th over, bowled by Bravo and Williamson got dismissed in the first ball of the next over bowled by Shardul Thakur.
With the departure of the two set batsmen, the tempo slowed down. Manish Pandey continued with his poor form as he got out for 5 in the 19th over as the Sunrisers added 49 runs from the final five overs.