Mumbai Indians got the better of Chennai Super Kings for three times out of three this IPL season to qualify for the finals for the fifth time. This is the fifth straight win for Mumbai Indians at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in IPLs. CSK relied on their spinners to get most of their wins this season, but on this day the visitor’s three spinners outdid the Chennai three and restricted Chennai to a below-par score of 131 runs. Despite that, it was Suryakumar Yadav’s well-paced unbeaten inning of 71 not out that saw Mumbai home on a treacherous pitch where the ball was turning almost square right through the match.
Rahul Chahar bowling the second over of the match struck off his first ball when he had Faff du Plessis caught at point. Both Suresh Raina and Shane Watson were guilty of trying to play across the line and while the former lobbed a simple return catch to Jayant Yadav, the latter was caught by Yadav off Krunal Pandya. Watson was out on the last ball of the power play and Chennai were 32 runs with three wickets gone. Ambati Rayadu and Murali Vijay, who played in place of the injured Kedar Jadhav put together 33 runs for the fourth wicket in six overs. Vijay was stumped off Chahar for 26 runs.
MS Dhoni and Rayudu tried to push up the scoring rate by scoring 23 runs off the fourteenth and fifteenth overs but found it difficult to put Chahar and Krunal Pandya away. Despite the fact that Chennai had lost only four wickets the undefeated pair of Rayadu (42* off 37 balls) and Dhoni (37* off 29 balls) could only manage 66 runs off the almost 9 overs that they batted together. Super kings could not finish with a flourish normally associated with Dhoni in the death overs as only 32 runs were scored off the last three. A score of 131 looked below par even on a difficult pitch and facing the likes of Imran Tahir, Harbhajan Singh and Ravindra Jadeja.
Indians did not have a great start to their chase themselves as they lost captain Rohit Sharma leg before to Deepak Chahar to the second ball of the inning. Quinton de Kock tried to hit Harbhajan Singh inside out but only managed to loft the ball to long-off where du Plessis took a comfortable catch rendering Mumbai Indians 21 for two. Chennai Super Kings will the chances they missed of catching both Suryakumar Yadav and Ishan Kishan. While the former was dropped by a diving Vijay off Deepak Chahar, Ishan Kishan got past Shane Watson at first slip off Harbhajan Singh. At the end of power play, Indians were 44 runs for 2 wickets.
Ishan Kishan 28 off 31 balls) who had hit Harbhajan Singh for two boundaries in the over in which he was dropped concentrated more on rotating the strike while SA Yadav assumed a more attacking role. The two of them compiled 80 runs for the third wicket in 63 balls. There was a slight hiccup in the Mumbai Indians’ inning when Imran Tahir dismissed both Ishan Kishan and Krunal Pandya off successive deliveries in the fourteenth over. But Suryakumar Yadav and Hardik Pandya kept their heads to see their team home with 9 balls to spare. Suryakumar Yadav remained not out on 71 runs scored off 54 balls.