No doubt that the Challengers performed extremely well in chasing 147 for eight; which otherwise would have been sufficient to win an average IPL match. But the home side, suddenly sprung up with individual and team best in performance to outshine the RCB by setting a target of 207 and subsequently with impressive bowling skills too.
The home side was vibrant and hungry on the field and displayed impressive end game skills. Captain Dhoni, closing all escape routes, rung in the changes very smartly. In pursuit of a massive 206 in an IPL Cup final, RCB finished at a worthy 147 for eight. The visitors finally succumbed to the pressures of a massive chase propelled by impressive bowling.
CSK is now the only team to win the title twice; in the third and in the four editions of the IPL. At the end of it all, the yellow colored crowd at the packed M.A. Chidambaram Stadium roared, danced, sung and celebrated. Dhoni and his men were the toast.
Dhoni, elected to bat on a track first which offered greater purchase to the spinners in the later stages. The ploy worked perfectly!
The victory was set up by a record 159-run opening partnership in 14.5 overs between opener Murali Vijay (95) and the left-handed Michael Hussey (63). The left-right combination disrupted the line and length of even the best of RCB bowlers even as it dismantled the attack clinically.
Murali Vijay held centre-stage in the CSK innings. Searching for form, Vijay had saved his best for the last. The opening batman, his body language simmering with intent and aggression, imposed himself on the contest. The fielders were chasing leather.
Both Vijay and Hussey converted the length by either swaying the ball to height or using the depth of the crease. They also ran hard between the wickets, putting the RCB fielders under stress. Resultantly, RCB gave away costly overthrows. The RCB bowlers ran out of ideas.
Vijay’s down swing was straight and his bat-speed was terrific. He was able to get under the ball and propel the sphere to distant parts of the ground by the use of his strong wrists. Vijay got his front leg out of the way in a jiffy to deposit balls in the cow corner. The ball was struck with brutal force. In one innings he displayed his brute force as well as excellent field sense and body language. Vijay also displayed the classical element of his batting by easing paceman Abhimanyu Mithun through covers and guiding the accomplished Zaheer through the off-side field. Looks like he finally comprehended the changes required in pace that can be so effective in this format. He perfectly timed his shots and left no chance to hit the big shots when offered a hint of flight, whether the ball is short or in perfect length he made the bowlers pat heavily.
Hussey too managed a few weighty blows due to his quickness in getting into good positions. Being strong off either foot, he can drill the ball through gaps over venture for lofted hits. Most importantly, he provides a strong support to his partner and does not get influenced by situation.