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Chennai Super Kings won this match at a canter.
Chennai Super Kings (177/7) bt. Delhi Daredevils (84 all out) by 93 runs
The Delhi Daredevils were well and truly beaten by the Chennai Super Kings in Match 8 at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi, on Monday.
After setting a huge total and still losing last time out, Kings’ MS Dhoni decided to bat after winning the toss, and a total of 177 despite a slow start—including a superb innings from Suresh Raina—would have pleased the captain.
Still without captain Kevin Pietersen, the Daredevils lacked any punch whatsoever and never looked likely to trouble the scoreboard.
Brendon McCullum and Dwayne Smith took to the crease to open proceedings, looking to replicate their opening-wicket partnership of 123 from the last match against Kings XI Punjab.
It certainly appeared to be a wicket to suit the batsmen as both were quickly into their stride, despite some good line and length from JP Duminy and Shahbaz Nadeem in the opening couple of overs.
McCullum’s confidence appeared to get the better of him, however, and in the third over of the day a dropped catch from Duminy was quickly followed by McCullum's wicket as he edged to Wayne Parnell.
Smith continued to pick up the odd single here and there as he looked to outwit Jaydev Unadkat, the latter producing a fine spell of bowling.
A boundary per over at best after 10 overs of play, and with just 53 runs on the board, meant that the run rate needed to be upped significantly.
Sensing the urgency, the Super Kings responded with some big hits. A six and three further boundaries followed from Suresh Raina inside two overs; however, Smith’s own exuberance saw him fall to a beautiful delivery from Nadeem.
Raina soon brought up his 50 but an attempt at going for the big shot saw him removed just a few balls later, Murali Vijay taking the catch.
Faf Du Plessis and captain Dhoni pushed on the score nicely, again peppering the innings with boundaries. The former was yet another victim of playing the crowd-pleaser as his six was followed by a skied effort straight into the grateful arms of Vijay.
Dhoni’s wicket in the 18th over was quickly followed by Ravindra Jadeja’s as the Daredevils put one last squeeze on proceedings.
There was still time for Ravichandran Ashwin to be run out on the penultimate ball, and a final-ball boundary to set a target of 178 to win.
Things couldn’t have got off to a worse start for the Daredevils, just eight runs posted before Ishwar Pandey had Mayank Agarwal removed with the first ball of the third over.
The theme continued throughout a hugely disappointing innings, no sooner had the batsmen began to settle than one was removed.
Mohit Sharma was next to get amongst the wickets, having Murali Vijay removed via a superb catch from Du Plessis as the batsman attempted the big shot but only succeeded in getting underneath the ball.
It was a new over, another wicket, Du Plessis again on the end of another skied shot, this time from Manoj Tiwary.
At this point, the Daredevils were looking at a hugely embarrassing total, rocking as they were at 17 for 3.
JP Duminy and Dinesh Karthik finally managed to settle the innings down and began to pick up quick singles and the odd boundary. Any thoughts of a long tenancy at the wicket were short-lived, however, as Dwayne Smith had Duminy trapped LBW.
Karthik continued to work hard for his side, but it was a losing battle. Ross Taylor was out just one ball after a beautiful four from the bowling of Ben Hilfenhaus, Dhoni taking the catch.
After 11 overs, a paltry total of 63/5 looked ominous, and when Karthik was bowled for 21 in the 12th over, the Daredevils' hopes all but disappeared.
Within three overs the tail had been accounted for, a hugely embarrassing 84 the final total.
Per IPLT20.com, Dhoni was, of course, much the happier captain:
It was a very complete performance and a first class display of what we mean. It was the perfect game for us and we batted and bowled really well.
We have a deep enough batting lineup and our openers were very professional today. We have been practicing hard in the field and I am really pleased with our performance.
Pietersen and the coaching staff certainly have much to ponder before their next game.