India’s Suresh Raina clouted 98 off 55 balls to set up a 38-run win for the Chennai Super Kings in Centurion.
The other Chennai batsman failed to get on top of the Rajastahn bowlers, Matthew Hayden just one of the top six who were removed cheaply. Subramaniam Badrinath (29) and MS Dhoni (22*) weighed in with the only other significant contributions, and if not for Raina’s clean-hitting, the Super Kings wouldn’t have posted a competitive total.
The India batsman perished with just two balls of the innings remaining, hitting a Munaf Patel delivery to Graeme Smith. Raina fell just two short of what would have been a richly deserved century, his entertaining knock containing 10 4s and five 6s.
The Royals stuttered in their response with several players getting starts but nobody really kicking on. The dangerous Yusuf Pathan was just gathering momentum when he was well caught by Raina at long off, a catch that affirmed Chennai’s dominance. At 87-4 after 13 overs, Rajastahn were looking likely losers.
Lakshmipathy Balaji picked up four wickets as the Royals attempted to up the run-rate, but only succeeded in skying the ball to unerring fielders.
Chennai Super Kings – 164-5 in 20 overs
Suresh Raina 98, Yusuf Pathan 2-17.
Rajasthan Royals – 126-9 in 19.3 overs
Ravindra Jadeja 37, Albie Morkel 2-21, Lakshmipathy Balaji 4-21.
Chennai won by 38 runs
For the full scorecard click here.