IPL 2019: CSK beats KKR by seven wickets; moves to top of points table

A brilliant show by Chennai Super Kings' spinners set up a seven-wicket victory against Kolkata Knight Riders in the top-of-the-table Indian Premier League clash at Chepauk.

After a brilliant show by the bowlers, Faf du Plessis and Ambati Rayudu's stand of 46 runs helped CSK ace the chase of 109 runs with 16 balls to spare.   -  PTI

Chennai Super Kings extended its unbeaten home run in the top-of-the-table clash, beating Kolkata Knight Riders by seven wickets at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium on Tuesday.

After a brilliant show by the bowlers, Faf du Plessis and Ambati Rayudu's stand of 46 runs helped CSK ace the chase of 109 runs with 16 balls to spare.

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On a sluggish track, Piyush Chawla opening the bowling with KKR searching for early breakthroughs. Shane Watson got off the blocks (17) with two boundaries and a six but fell to Sunil Narine in the third over. Suresh Raina (14) too looked in great touch but perished soon, trying to clear Narine, with Chawla taking a stunning catch running backwards.

Rayudu and Du Plessis kept things simple and focused on taking CSK closer to the target. When Rayudu (21) fell, CSK needed 24 off 30 balls and Du Plessis (43*) and Kedar Jadhav (8*) ensured the task was done.

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Mahendra Singh Dhoni won the crucial toss and chose to field first on a humid evening in Chennai with the dew looking imminent later in the match. Deepak Chahar vindicated his skipper's decision by removing Chris Lynn for a duck in his first over.

With the pitch on the slower side, KKR's batsmen paid the price for not showing caution with the bat. Harbhajan Singh, introduced into the attack in the second over, removed Narine (6), who was caught brilliantly by Chahar at backward point.

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Chahar ran in well and was rewarded for hitting the right lengths with the wicket of Nitish Rana (0) in his second over. The experienced duo of Robin Uthappa and Dinesh Karthik failed to bail the team out of trouble with Uthappa (11) hitting just two boundaries before holing out to Kedar Jadhav at mid wicket.

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At the end of the Powerplay, KKR was reeling at 29/4. With the surface gripping, Dhoni didn't hold back Imran Tahir and the South African legspinner joined the party by taking out Karthik (19) and Shubman Gill (9) off his two successive overs.

With Andre Russell still there, CSK could hardly relax and Tahir provided the opportunity. But Harbhajan failed to hold on to a catch, with Russell on 8. A partnership of 29 runs was going strong, when Harbhajan removed Chawla (8), stumped by Dhoni.

With wickets falling at the other end, Russell waited for the bad deliveries and kept the odd boundaries coming. Batting with last-man Harry Gurney, he added 29 and scored 15 off the last over to take KKR to 108/9 in 20 overs. Russell remained unbeaten on 50 off 44 balls, which included five fours and three sixes. For CSK, Chahar had figures of 3 for 20 while Harbhajan and Tahir claimed two wickets each.

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