Chennai Super Kings beat Kings XI Punjab in the final game of the IPL league phase by five wickets.
Chennai Super Kings ended Kings XI Punjab’s hopes for a play-off berth when they cruised past the Punjab side by five wickets yesterday. CSK ended the IPL league phase with 18 points on 2nd, while Kings XI Punjab, after a flying start to the season, finished down at 7th.
Punjab batted first and put together a disappointing batting performance. Lungi Ngidi was the star performer of the night for CSK, who took 4 wickets for mere 10 runs in his four overs. He was also adjudged the man of the match.
The South African took both the openers cheaply, and also dismissed captain Ravichandran Ashwin and Andrew Tye.
Ravichandran Ashwin’s wicket was a rather special one for Ngidi. Ashwin looked to push the length ball down to third man, and in the process edged the ball. MS Dhoni didn’t react as he caught the ball, but Ngidi claimed he heard a sound.
The South African persuaded Dhoni to take a review, and it certainly reaped the reward as the snickometer detected slight edge.
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Ashwin’s wicket was important in the context of the game, as Kings XI Punjab needed a win by at least 53 runs to make it to the play-offs. Ashwin had shown his capability with the bat in the game against KKR, when he scored 45 off just 22 deliveries.
Ngidi’s stunning spell helped Chennai dismissing KXIP for 153. CSK started badly, losing both of their openers cheaply. However, Dhoni’s mind-games in sending Harbhajan and Chahar up the order worked, as Raina stabilized the run-chase from one end. Raina scored 61*, and Dhoni hit the winning six as CSK eased past KXIP with one ball to spare.