MS Dhoni produced an inspired final over as Chennai Super Kings defeated Delhi Capitals by four wickets in Dubai to book their place in the 2021 Indian Premier League final.

With CSK chasing 13 from the last six balls to snatch victory, the skipper hit three successive boundaries to book his side's place in the showpiece for a ninth time.

The three-time IPL winners arrived in Qualifier 1 at the Dubai International Stadium having lost each of their previous four meetings with the Capitals.

Table-toppers during the league stage, Prithvi Shaw (60) and skipper Rishabh Pant (51) led the way as the Capitals set a target of 172-5.

CSK surrendered top spot in the table after losing each of their final three matches of the regular season.

But despite losing Faf du Plessis for just one run, Ruturaj Gaikwad hit an impressive 70 from 50 balls – surpassing 600 for the season – while Robin Uthappa made further strides with a knock of 63.

It came down to the final over, which began with Moeen Ali caught out by Kagiso Rabada as Tom Curran claimed his third wicket from five deliveries.

But with Dhoni on strike, CSK did not look back; the veteran hitting three consecutive fours to send his side through to Friday's final.

The Capitals' hopes of reaching the showpiece are not over just yet as they return in Qualifier 2 on Wednesday to face the winner of Monday's eliminator between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Kolkata Knight Riders.


Dhoni delivers

Following Gaikwad's dismissal, Dhoni entered the action in the 19th over with his side requiring 24 from their final 11 balls.

And the 40-year-old shone on the big stage once again. On strike after Moeen was caught out, he delivered a captain's performance with three successive boundaries sealing victory with two balls remaining. 


600 up for Gaikwad

Gaikwad became only the second player to surpass 600 runs in this season’s IPL after KL Rahul of Punjab Kings.

The 24-year-old’s knock of 70 also makes him just the third CSK player to achieve the feat during a single campaign.

Srikar Bharat struck a match-winning six off the final delivery as the Royal Challengers Bangalore beat Indian Premier League leaders the Delhi Capitals on Friday.

Chasing a target of 164-5, it looked likely that Virat Kohli's men would fall short until a dramatic final over in Dubai.

With six runs needed off the final ball, Avesh Khan (0-31) bowled a wide to give Bharat one more chance, and his final full toss was powered over the ropes to give the Royal Challengers a seven-wicket win.

The Capitals started in commanding fashion after being put in to bat, Prithvi Shaw (48) and Shikhar Dhawan (43) combining for 88 until the latter was caught at mid-off.

Captain Rishabh Pant fell for just 10 runs shortly after Shaw sliced a shot straight to George Garton, with Shreyas Iyer (18) and Shimron Hetmyer (29) helping to push the target score into tricky territory.

When Devdutt Padikkal went for a golden duck and Kohli followed after posting just four runs, the Royal Challengers' task began to look firmly beyond their means.

That was until the intervention of Glenn Maxwell (51) and man-of-the-match Bharat. An unbeaten 78 off just 52 deliveries, aided by some lacklustre work in the field, kept the improbable in sight even after AB de Villiers' promising knock of 26 was ended before the midway point of the innings.

Maxwell reached his half-century to start the final over before Bharat's heroics sparked wild celebrations.

More Capitals gains for Kohli

The Capitals were on a run of just one defeat in seven IPL matches but came unstuck against arguably their least-favourite opponents.

The Royal Challengers have won 16 of 25 completed matches in the competition against Delhi – against no side have they won more.

It was a frustrating way for the Capitals to head into Sunday's first qualifier with the second-place Chennai Super Kings, while the Royal Challengers will be buoyed ahead of their eliminator with the Kolkata Knight Riders.

Two grand batters

Maxwell's 51, which included eight fours, saw him become the eighth Australian to reach 2,000 runs in the IPL.

Dhawan also surpassed the 2,000-run mark, a feat only achieved previously by three players for the Capitals in the competition.

Mumbai Indians saw their Indian Premier League title defence come to an end on Friday, despite recording an impressive 42-run win over Sunrisers Hyderabad.

Kolkata Knight Riders' emphatic triumph 24 hours earlier had left the two-time reigning champions with a nigh-on impossible task of qualifying, Rohit Sharma's side needing to win by the small matter of 171 runs to squeeze into the top four.

They did keep those exceedingly slim hopes alive with a superb batting display, Ishan Kishan leading the way at the top of the order with a blazing knock of 84 from just 32 deliveries.

Suryakumar Yadav kept the big hits coming in the closing stages too, smashing 82 as Mumbai finished on 235-9, comfortably the highest team score in the competition since the 2021 season resumed.

Already certain to end up bottom of the table, Sunrisers started strongly in their reply but were never truly in contention, captain Manish Pandey's unbeaten 69 the highlight as they finished on 193-8.

The result means the Knight Riders join Royal Challengers Bangalore, Chennai Super Kings and table-topping Delhi Capitals in the play-offs.

Mumbai show promise for the future

There will be no hat-trick of IPL triumphs for the Indians, who will be on the outside looking in when the play-offs begin. Any hopes of a miraculous result disappeared quickly in the second innings, Sunrisers opening duo Jason Roy and Abhishek Sharma made 34 and 33 respectively when Mumbai had needed to bowl them out for just 64.

Sun seemingly setting for Warner

David Warner has struggled for form this season with Hyderabad, averaging just 24.37 at a strike-rate of 107.73 runs per 100 deliveries before losing his place in the team. It seems it could be his last year with the franchise, as he thanked Sunrisers fans for a "great ride" in an Instagram post hinting at his impending departure.

Kolkata Knight Riders thrashed Rajasthan Royals by 86 runs to close in on a place in the Indian Premier League play-offs.

Shubman Gill's 56 helped Kolkata to a commanding total of 171-4 in Sharjah, where the Royals succumbed to a chastening defeat.

Shivam Mavi took four wickets, with Lockie Ferguson claiming three scalps as the Royals capitulated to 85 all out in the 17th over.

Kolkata look certain to finish in the top four, while their beaten opponents' already slim hopes went up in smoke.

Gill and Venkatesh Iyer (38) laid a solid foundation for KKR with a 79-run opening partnership, with the remainder of the order contributing double-figure scores.

By contrast, only two Royals batsmen hit double figures as Rahul Tewatia's fine 44 went unrewarded.

Mavi magic

With the Royals losing Yashasvi Jaiswal in the first over and slumping to 13-4 after only 22 deliveries, the writing was on the wall early on in their reply.

Mavi did much of the damage with the ball, his 4-21 restricting the Royals to their lowest total in this IPL season.

KKR almost there

The only team who can prevent the Knight Riders extending their campaign are reigning champions Mumbai Indians.

But the Indians, who play Sunrisers Hyderabad on Friday, must bat first and win by a record 171 runs in order to claim fourth spot on net run rate.

KL Rahul produced a masterclass as Punjab Kings cruised to a six-wicket Indian Premier League win over Chennai Super Kings to keep their faint play-off hopes alive.

Punjab's net run rate ensured even a huge win would be highly unlikely to give them a chance of sneaking into the play-offs, with Kolkata Knight Riders in pole position for the final spot.

The Kings were theoretically still in the hunt, though, as this match ended, after moving up to fifth place by hammering second-placed Super Kings at the Dubai International Stadium, chasing down their target of 135 with seven overs to spare.

Faf du Plessis made 76 from 55 balls as CSK posted 134-6, Chris Jordan the pick of the bowlers with 2-20 and Arshdeep Singh taking 2-35.

That total was nowhere near enough as Punjab captain Rahul, the leading run-scorer in the tournament, smashed an unbeaten 98 from just 42 deliveries in a stunning knock.

The India opening batsman became the Kings' highest run-scorer in the history of the franchise, showing incredible timing and power to move his side up to fifth place.

KKR faced Rajasthan Royals later in the day knowing their fate was in their hands, with Mumbai Indians only having an outside chance of qualifying ahead of their last league game against Sunrisers Hyderabad on Friday.

 

Du Plessis one-man show

Du Plessis stepped up as his team-mates failed with the bat, Ravindra Jadeja the second-highest scorer in the CSK innings with 15 not out.

The Super Kings were reeling on 61-5 from 12 overs when MS Dhoni was bowled by Ravi Bishnoi after the returning Jordan and Arshdeep took two wickets apiece.

Former South Africa captain Du Plessis almost carried his bat, eventually falling in the last over from Mohammed Shami after hitting two sixes and eight fours.

Rahul runs riot

It has been an outstanding IPL for Rahul, who holds the orange cap with a competition-high 626 runs from 13 innings at an average of 62.60.

Rahul raced to a half-century in only 25 balls and finished just short of a deserved hundred, clearing the rope eight times and hitting seven fours.

He launched Shardul Thakur, who took 3-28, for six to seal an emphatic win after the bowling of Deepak Chahar and Dwayne Bravo in particular had been taken apart.

Jason Roy led the way as Sunrisers Hyderabad claimed a shock four-run victory over Royal Challengers Bangalore in Abu Dhabi.

Roy hit 44 as the Sunrisers, who sit bottom of the table with their play-off hopes already over, earned only their third win of a torrid Indian Premier League season at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium.

Already assured of a play-off berth, RCB were aiming for a fourth successive victory that would strengthen their hopes of finishing in the top two.

Virat Kohli's side were set a target of 142 and headed into the final over needing 13, following knocks of 41 and 40 from Devdutt Padikkal and Glenn Maxwell respectively.

AB de Villiers, who finished on 19 not out, edged RCB closer to the total with a huge six off Bhuvneshwar Kumar's fourth ball of the final over to leave six required from the last two deliveries.

However, Kumar showed all of his experience to wrap up the victory, conceding just one run off his final two balls, as RCB fell narrowly short on 137-6.

Joy for Roy

The England opener made a top-scoring contribution for the Sunrisers, with a knock of 44 from 38 balls.

He and skipper Kane Williamson hit combined in a 70-run partnership in 9.4 overs to provide the platform for their side to build upon.


History for Patel

Despite the defeat, it was a historic day for Harshal Patel, who set a new record of most wickets by an Indian bowler in an IPL season as he surpassed Jasprit Bumrah's tally from the previous season (27).

The right-arm bowler claimed an impressive 3-33 as he dismissed Williamson, Wriddhiman Saha and Jason Holder.

That took Patel's tally in this season's IPL to 29; seven clear of nearest challenger Avesh Khan, who has impressed for the Delhi Capitals this term.

Nathan Coulter-Nile claimed his best Indian Premier League figures and Ishan Kishan smashed a half-century as Mumbai Indians stayed in the play-off hunt with an eight-wicket hammering of Rajasthan Royals.

Both sides started their penultimate match of the regular season on Tuesday knowing they needed a win to have any real chance of taking the fourth and final play-off place.

The defending champions moved level on points with the fourth-placed Kolkata Knight Riders, who have a superior run-rate, and left the sorry Royals facing an early exit by dishing out a thrashing at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium.

Coulter-Nile finished with incredible figures of 4-14 as the Royals could only post a meagre 90-9 - the second-lowest total in the full 20 overs in IPL history.

Jimmy Neesham took 3-12 and Jasprit Bumrah 2-14, with Rajasthan capitulating from 41-1 under pressure.

Mumbai had no such trouble with the bat in their run chase, reaching their target for the fall of only two wickets with 70 balls to spare.

Such an emphatic win for the holders may still not be enough for them to qualify ahead of their match against Sunrisers Hyderabad on Friday, with KKR in pole position as they prepare to face the seventh-placed Royals on Thursday.

Coulter-Nile rips through Royals

Australian paceman Coulter-Nile was the Royals' chief tormentor after they had got off to a promising start.

He ended an opening stand of 27 by getting Yashasvi Jaiswal caught behind and Rajasthan fell to pieces after Lewis was snared leg before by Bumrah.

Coulter-Nile cleaned up Glenn Phillips and struck David Miller in front before bowling Chetan Sakariya, while Neesham claimed the wickets of Sanju Samson, Shivam Dube and Rahul Tewatia on the New Zealand all-rounder's IPL return.

Sealed with a Kish

Kishan came to the wicket on the back of three failures, but he returned to form in spectacular fashion to seal victory in a hurry.

Rohit Sharma (22 off 13) became the first Indian batsman to hit 400 T20 sixes before fellow opener Kishan came to the fore.

The 23-year-old reached the 1,000 runs landmark for the franchise, clearing the rope three times and hitting a further four boundaries, dispatching Mustafizur Rahman for four and then a six to reach his half-century and wrap up a crushing win.

Delhi Capitals moved to the summit of the Indian Premier League table with a three-wicket win over Chennai Super Kings in the battle between the top two on Monday.

Both sides were already assured of a play-off spot before they met at the Dubai International Stadium and it was the Capitals who moved to the brink of sealing a top-two finish with their 100th victory in the IPL's 50th match of 2021.

Kagiso Rabada steered Dwayne Bravo for four to take Delhi beyond their target of 137 to win, moving above their opponents with one game of the regular season to play.

Ambati Rayudu top scored with an unbeaten 55 from 43 balls in CSK's total of 136-5 after they were put in by birthday boy Rishabh Pant, Axar Patel the pick of the bowlers with 2-18 from his four overs.

Shikhar Dhawan struck 39 off 35 deliveries in his 300th T20 game, but Delhi collapsed to 99-6 after the opener and Ravichandran Ashwin fell in an excellent 15th over from Shardul Thakur (2-13)

Ravindra Jadeja (2-28) had earlier removed Pant and Ripal Patel, into the side at the expense of Steve Smith, but a dropped catch from Krishnappa Gowtham and some wayward Dwayne Bravo bowling cost CSK.

Substitute fielder Gowtham dropped a simple chance offered by Shimron Hetmyer in the 18th over and the West Indies batsman finished unbeaten on 28, with Rabada settling a tight contest.

Axar peaking at the right time

Spinner Axar was named man of the match after taking 3-21 in a four-wicket win over defending champions Mumbai Indians on Saturday.

The tweaker made a big impact once again two days later, getting dangerous duo Faf du Plessis and Moeen Ali caught at deep midwicket.

Axar has taken 14 wickets in IPL games, with his economy rate of 6.05 the sixth-best in the tournament, and he could have a big say in whether Delhi win the title.

 

Gowtham gaffe punished

The Capitals needed 28 to win off three overs after losing their way in the run chase, but the game swung back in their favour in the 18th over.

Bravo had already bowled two wides and been hit for four by Hetmyer before his Windies team-mate was put down by Gowtham coming in from long-on, the ball going through his hands and crossing the ropes to add insult to injury.

Hetmyer launched Josh Hazlewood for a huge six into the leg side in the next over as Gowtham looked to the skies in disbelief.

Shubman Gill made a decisive half-century as Kolkata Knight Riders beat Sunrisers Hyderabad by six wickets in their battle for the final Indian Premier League play-off spot.

There is only one place in the last four up for grabs after Royal Challengers Bangalore qualified on Sunday and KKR are primed to extend their season after this victory at the Dubai International Stadium.

Rooted to the bottom of the table with only two wins, Sunrisers could only post 115-8 after Kane Williamson won the toss and opted to bat first.

Williamson top scored with only 26 and Abdul Samad made a quickfire 25, with Tim Southee (2-26) Shivam Mavi (2-29) and Varun Chakravarthy 2-26 restricting Hyderabad to a below-par total.

Shakib Al Hasan marked his first appearance since the tournament resumed in the UAE by running Williamson out with a direct hit and the all-rounder also took 1-20.

Gill struck 57 from 51 balls with support from Nitish Rana (25) and Dinesh Karthik made an unbeaten 18 as the Knight Riders got home with two balls to spare

The win moves Eoin Morgan's fourth-placed side two points clear of Punjab Kings, Rajasthan Royals and Mumbai Indians with a superior run-rate.

Rajasthan and defending champions Mumbai have a game in hand ahead of KKR's final match of the regular season against the Royals in Sharjah on Thursday.

Southee sets the tone

New Zealand paceman Southee went for 40 from four wicketless overs in a loss to Punjab Kings on Friday.

He charged in to put that behind him two days later, trapping Wriddhiman Saha leg before first ball off the second delivery of the match.

Southee also saw the back of Samad after he had hit three sixes, with Varun and Mavi also impressing along with the returning Shakib.

Composed Gill fits the bill

Calm heads were needed in the run chase with so much at stake as the play-off battle hots up, with the Royals knowing a second successive defeat could be so costly.

Opening batsman Gill delivered, laying the foundations with a composed knock that included 10 boundaries.

Siddarth Kaul had Gill caught by Jason Holder, who took 2-32, in the deep in the 17th over, but Morgan's men were well on their way to victory by then.

Royal Challengers Bangalore sealed an Indian Premier League play-off spot thanks to a six-run win over Punjab Kings on Sunday.

Glenn Maxwell smashed 57 from just 33 deliveries as Royal Challengers made 164-7 after opting to bat first, the highest total posted at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium since the 2021 season resumed.

Punjab Kings had won each of the three previous games against their opponents staged in the United Arab Emirates, and they looked well set to extend that streak when opening duo KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal impressed again, putting on a 91-run stand.

However, the innings lost momentum after Rahul departed for 39, spinner Yuzvendra Chahal (3-29) turning the tide in his side's favour.

Agarwal would end up top-scoring with 57, but the Kings came up short in the final reckoning, ending on 158-6 as Bangalore's bowlers held their nerve in the closing stages.

While Punjab missed the chance to move into the play-off positions, Bangalore are certain to finish the round-robin stage in the top four after ending a three-match losing run at the venue.

Taking it to the Max

While Virat Kohli and Devdutt Padikkal made 25 and 40 respectively at the top of the Bangalore order, both struggled to force the pace before being dismissed by Moises Henriques, who finished with 3-12. However, Maxwell had no such problems, smashing four sixes in a knock that was eventually ended when he became one of three wickets for Mohammed Shami (3-39) in an eventful final over.

Rahul on top, Kings in trouble

Rahul is back on top of the IPL's run-scoring list for the campaign; he has now managed 528 in 12 innings at an outstanding average of 52.80. His dismissal to Shahbaz Ahmed changed the complexion of proceedings, though, as his team fell away down the stretch to suffer a painful defeat.

Ruturaj Gaikwad's magnificent maiden Twenty20 century was in vain as Rajasthan Royals boosted their Indian Premier League play-off hopes with a seven-wicket win over leaders Chennai Super Kings.

Gaikwad replaced KL Rahul as the leading run-scorer in the 2021 tournament, hitting a six off the final ball of CSK's innings to finish unbeaten on 101 off 60 balls.

The opener struck five sixes in a sensational knock, with Ravindra Jadeja scoring a rapid 32 not out in the Super Kings' 189-4 at Zayed Cricket Stadium on Saturday.

Rahul Tewatia took 3-39 but it was a tough day for the Royals bowlers, Mustafizur Rahman going for 51 off his wicket-less four overs.

A big run chase was no problem for the Royals, though, as they cruised to a what could be a vital win with 15 balls to spare in an Abu Dhabi run-fest.

Shivam Dube (64no from 42) struck a brilliant maiden IPL half-century after Yashasvi Jaiswal made 50 from just 21 balls, with Josh Hazlewood (0-54) and Sam Curran (0-55) given the treatment.

Victory for the Royals leaves them in sixth place with two games of the regular season to play, behind Kolkata Knight Riders and Punjab Kings on net run-rate.

CSK are already assured of a play-off place but are not guaranteed a top-two finish after their four-game winning run came to an end in MS Dhoni's 200th match as an IPL captain.

Gaikwad takes Royals to all parts

The Rajasthan bowlers were taken to all parts by an inspired Gaikwad, who set the tone by hitting the first ball of the match from Akash Singh for four. 

He brought up a seventh IPL half-century off 43 balls and then cut loose, taking 71 off 30 deliveries and reaching three figures by launching Mustafizur for a huge six.

Gaikwad has 19 runs more than Rahul in the battle for the orange cap, having found the rope nine times to go with his five sixes in a breathtaking innings.

Dube and Jaiswal stun CSK

It was the turn of the CSK bowlers to suffer as Jaiswal and Evin Lewis (27 off 12) made a blistering start to the run chase, putting on 77 in 5.2 overs.

Teenager Jaiswal had his half-century off only 19 balls, striking Hazlewood for two sixes in a fifth over that cost 22 runs before falling to KM Asif to leave the Super Kings on 81-2.

Dube then came to the fore in a stand of 89 with captain Sanju Samson (28), bringing up a maiden fifty from 31 deliveries in a knock that included four sixes, and debutant Glenn Phillips hit the winning run to end the Royals' run of three consecutive defeats.

Shreyas Iyer nudged Delhi Capitals to a four-wicket victory over Mumbai Indians to leave the defending Indian Premier League champions in danger of missing out on the play-offs.

Avesh Khan (3-15) and Axar Patel (3-21) limited Mumbai - who are sixth with two matches to play - to 129-8 as the holders lost wickets at regular intervals.

Anrich Nortje also picked up 1-19 from his four-over allocation and, despite Suryakumar Yadav's 33, Rishabh Pant's side looked like the firm favourites at the halfway point in Sharjah on Saturday.

Nathan Coulter-Nile dismissed fellow Australian Steve Smith (nine) with his first delivery to leave the Capitals teetering at 30-3 after openers Shikhar Dhawan and Prithvi Shaw were also dismissed cheaply.

Pant (26) followed to off-spinner Jayant Yadav to leave Delhi 57-4 but Iyer and Shimron Hetmyer (15) offered resistance to drag their side up to 93-6 before the latter fell to Jasprit Bumrah's deceiving slower ball.

Ravichandran Ashwin (20) then joined Iyer, who finished unbeaten on 33, to secure victory for second-placed Delhi with five balls to spare and leave the Indians under serious threat of failing to reach the play-offs.

Avesh torments Indians

Avesh toyed with the Mumbai line-up as he delivered a mix of slower balls and inswinging yorkers to secure his three dismissals.

The seamer impressively dismissed the dangerous finisher Hardik Pandya in the penultimate over, while also removing Coulter-Nile after he had claimed the big scalp of Rohit Sharma in his first over.

Ashwin final-over gamble fails

Pant gambled by holding back Ashwin to the final over of Mumbai's innings. The off-spinner dismissed Jayant Yadav but conceded 13 from his final six deliveries as he ended with 1-41 from his four overs.

However, Ashwin made up for it with the bat as he sealed the win with a six off Krunal Pandya's first ball of the last over.

Kolkata Knight Riders captain Eoin Morgan insists the franchise is monitoring the fitness of West Indies star Andre Russell on a day-by-day basic but remains unsure of exactly when the player will return to action.

The bit-hitting all-rounder was forced to leave the field after making a good save on the mid-wicket boundary and jumped himself off the field as soon as he threw back the ball.  The 33-year-old did not feature for the team against the Dehli Capitals, or Friday’s encounter against the Punjab Kings XI.

Despite Russell missing the second game in a row, Morgan did not shed any more light on the player’s current injury status.

“Lockie and Russell are being monitored day by day. They have to rehab extremely well in order to be fit,” Morgan said.

Earlier, David Hussey, KKR’s team mentor, had described Russell’s injury as a hamstring injury but expressed hope that the player could return to the line-up soon,

“He said he felt something pop in his leg, his hamstring. We’ve got the best medical staff in the business so they’ll tend to him and hopefully, it’s nothing too serious, because he’s a key part of our team,” Hussey said.

In addition to the Knight Riders, the West Indies will also be closely monitoring the situation, with the player expected to line up for the World T20 later this month.

 

 

Punjab Kings emerged triumphant after a dramatic finish to beat Kolkata Knight Riders by five wickets and keep their Indian Premier League play-off hopes alive.

Chasing 166 to win, captain KL Rahul (67 runs from 55 balls) took Punjab to the brink of a vital victory only to fall in the final over, leaving them needing four from as many balls.

Shahrukh Khan (22 from nine) then looked like he had been caught in the deep off the next delivery, only for Rahul Tripathi to drop the ball over the boundary for a six, ending the contest.

That thrilling finale came after a run chase that Punjab had long looked to have under control, with Mayank Agarwal (40 from 27) also making a key contribution.

KKR had earlier managed 165-7 after being put in to bat, with Venkatesh Iyer scoring 67 off 49 to give his side a chance.

Instead, Punjab's successful chase means they join KKR and Mumbai Indians on 10 points in a competitive battle to achieve a top-four place.

No Gayle, no problem for Kings

Chris Gayle leaving the IPL due to bubble fatigue was a blow for the Kings, but they were still able to get the win they desperately needed here.

Rahul, who had two maximums, anchored the innings and would have been disappointed not to have finished the chase himself. Still, he can reflect on a job well done while sitting as the competition's leading run scorer with 489, this being his fifth fifty in 11 matches.

KKR fail to build on Iyer platform

With Andre Russell out injured, it was Iyer who did the damage with the bat for KKR, his 72-run partnership with Tripathi for the second wicket setting an impressive platform.

However, KKR did not take full advantage and, having reached 120-2, they struggled. After Iyer's dismissal, Nitish Rana (31 off 18) was the only batter able to accelerate the rate.

Chennai Super Kings qualified for the Indian Premier League play-offs thanks to a six-wicket victory over Sunrisers Hyderabad, who are eliminated from contention.

Hyderabad had won their previous outing, beating Rajasthan Royals by seven wickets to snap a five-game losing run in the competition, but this was another poor performance during a disappointing season for the franchise.

They mustered just 134-7 from their 20 overs, with only Wriddhiman Saha managing more than 18 runs in a sub-par showing with the bat in Sharjah.

However, the Sunrisers still ran their opponents close in the end, Chennai left needing 16 off the final two overs despite strong showings from opening duo Ruturaj Gaikwad (45) and Faf du Plessis (41). 

However, 40-year-old MS Dhoni rolled back the years to finish the game in style, smashing a six to secure the victory with two balls to spare.

Super Kings bolster impressive record

Chennai have now won eight of their last 10 matches against the Sunrisers. This latest success was built on a solid team bowling performance, one which was led by Australia fast bowler Josh Hazlewood (3-24).

Saha show not quite enough

While he was on the losing side, Saha certainly cannot be blamed for the defeat. He made nearly a third of Hyderabad's runs on his own as he managed 44 from 46 deliveries, including a pair of sixes, but received little support from the rest of the top order.

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