May 29 (): Two-time champion Chennai Super Kings (CSK) defeated last year’s IPL champion Mumbai Indians (MI) by 7 wickets to enter yet another qualifier.
Chennai won the toss and asked Mumbai to bat as Dhoni felt his team was better chasing than setting a target. Hussey who played for CSK last year opened with Simmons and provided yet another 50 run partnership. They scored 76 in 9.4 overs with Hussey contributing 39 off 33. Simmons continued with his rich form and contributed 67 off 44 with 4 sixes and 5 boundaries.
Jadeja accounted for both the openers while Anderson scored a quick fire 20 off just 10 deliveries sending jitters in the CSK camp before Ashwin ensured there was no repeat of his heroics. The team was comfortably placed at 141 for 2 at the end of 16 overs and with Simmons going great guns and the likes of Pollard, Rayudu and Sharma available, it looked like MI would end up scoring close to 200. Their plans were spoiled by quick bowlers, Nehra and Mohit Sharma as they squeezed the scoring and picked up wickets regularly.
Mumbai could only muster to 173 as they scored only 32 in the last 4 overs for the loss of 6 wickets. Jadeja and Ashwin gave away only 57 runs among them in their 8 overs and also accounted for the top 3 wickets. Nehra came back strongly after the initial drubbing to finish with 2 for 34 while Mohit was expensive claiming his 3 wickets for 42 in his 4 overs.
Even with McCullum back in the squad, CSK opened with Smith and F du Plessis and the pair gave a resounding start to the innings with a partnership of 60 in just 6.2 overs. F de Plessis played aggressively scoring 35 off just 20 deliveries with 5 hits to the boundary. Raina coming in at 3 played his natural game even as McCullum and F du Plessis returned to the pavilion.
At 87/3 in 9.3 overs, Raina (54 off 33) and Hussey ( 40 off 29) joined together to forge a 89 run unbeaten partnership. Hussey who was slow to get off, opened up in the 16th over bowled by Ojha hitting him for 2 sixes before Raina joined him with a six on his own. The required equation was 42 off 30 balls before the over started and by the end, the required rate had come down to 22 off 24 balls.
During the innings, Raina crossed 400 runs in IPL 7 and in the process became the only batsmen in IPL to have scored 400+ runs in every edition starting 2008. Raina and Hussey ensured there were no last over hiccups and their Skipper Dhoni did not have to bail them out. They closed out the match in the 19th over with 8 balls to spare and set up a clash with Kings XI Punjab on Friday for a spot in the final.