Super Kings Of The World




Champions League T20

Champions League T20

Johannesburg: Murali Vijay and Mike Hussey hit sparkling half-centuries as the Chennai Super Kings were crowned the Champions League T20 winners with their eight wicket victory over Warriors in the grand finale here on Sunday.

Vijay scored 58 off 53 balls, who had a narrow escape on 34, cracked his third half century of the tournament while Hussey held on till the end and remained 51 not out as the Super Kings chased down the target of 129 with an over to spare.

Earlier, spinners Muttiah Muralitharan, 16/3 and Ravichandran Ashwin, 16/2 shared five wickets as Chennai restricted Warriors to 128/7 after the South African champion side elected to bat at the Wanderers Stadium. Vijay underlined his emergence as a fine T20 batsman by becoming the highest run-getter of the tournament with 294 runs from six matches, eight more than Warriors captain Davy Jacobs to claim the Golden Bat.

Vijay’s 53 ball innings was decorated with six fours and two sixes while Hussey hit only three fours from 46 balls in his unbeaten knock. CSK were awarded $2.5 million for winning the second edition of the tournament, CSK’s second crown in five months after their IPL triumph in April. Warriors received $1.3 million for finishing runners-up.

The grand finale of the multimillion dollar tournament, however, turned out to be a lopsided match with the Warriors bowlers failing to make any impact on the batsmen of the opposition who have beaten them in their last Group A league fixture in the last week.

The total of 128 was too small to defend and the CSK looked always in control of the run chase. Hussey and captain M S Dhoni 17* pulled off the win with a 25-run partnership for the unbroken third wicket after Raina’s early dismissal.

Dhoni hit the winning runs a four off J Thereon as the CSK scored 132/2 in 19 overs to lift the title. Vijay and Hussey did not need to take too much risk as they ran mostly in singles in their 103-run opening wicket stand in front of a capacity crowd.

Vijay played dangerously on a couple of occasions with an edge from his bat flying past wicketkeeper Mark Boucher and Justin Kreusch for a four in between slips. He was also lucky to survive in the ninth over, with wicketkeeper Mark Boucher missing a simple stumping chance off the bowling of Nicky Boje, when on 34.

But he amended later on of these lapses as he struck some fine shots, including two sixes off Nicky Boje. Earlier, Muttiah Muralitharan snapped three wickets as Warriors were restricted to 128/7. Muralitharan, who took three for 16, got able support from his spin colleague Ashwin (2/16). Ashwin won the Golden Ball for taking the most number of wickets in the Champions league.

This was the last time the CSK players were playing together as IPL next year will have new auctions and teams will have new players. CSK has made the most in last 3 years: 3 times reached semis of IPL and won the IPL once. Featured in Champions league once and won it in style!

By: Devesh D. Bhuwad

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