Chennai: Skipper MS Dhoni’s prowess in the slog overs was on display yet again while home spinners bamboozled the Delhi Capitals batsmen as Chennai Super Kings prevailed in the IPL battle for top spot with a thumping 80-run win, here Wednesday.
It was Suresh Raina who struck a fighting 59 off 37 balls to prepare the road for revival following a slow start and Dhoni (unbeaten 44 off 22) provided the late flourish, ending the innings in style with two sixes off Trent Boult.
After making just 27 runs in Powerplay overs, the hosts eventually put on board a fighting 179 for four and dismissed Capitals for just 99 in 16.2 over to snatch the top spot from the visitors.
Capitals suffered a surprise batting collapse after being consistent this season. They were out of the game after losing half the batsmen by 11th over and ended up suffering their worst defeat. It was also their lowest total of the season.
Chennai Super Kings, who now sit atop the table with 18 points, are now sure to end in top-2, ensuring that they will have two shots at making the summit clash.Dhoni’s quick hands were at it again as he effected two lightening fast stumpings, to dismiss skipper Shreyas Iyer (44) and dangerous Chris Morris (0).
Except Iyer and Shikhar Dhawan (19) none of the other Delhi batsmen could reach double-digit mark. Earlier, Raina (59) and Faf du Plessis (39) added 83 runs for the second wicket to revive the innings after Delhi Capitals bowlers produced tight spells upfront.
Dhoni, who returned to the side after recovering from a bout of fever, and Ravindra Jadeja added some quick runs to provide a late flourish to the innings. Dhoni hit unbeaten 44 off 22 balls with four fours and three sixes while Jadeja smashed 25 off 10 with two sixes. He creamed off 20 runs from Kiwi pacer Trent Boult’s final over, hitting two sixes and four.