Chennai Super Kings v New South Wales, CLT20, Chennai October 4, 2011

Warner-led NSW crush CSK en route to semi-final

67

New South Wales 201 for 2 (Warner 135*, Steven Smith 31) beat Chennai Super Kings 155 (Hussey 37, O'Keefe 3-28) by 46 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
How they were out

David Warner shook the Chepauk pitch out of its death-like slumber through a mix of clean straight hitting, including a six out of the stadium, and audacious switch-hits, one of them a pull for six over extra cover. On a square on which 135 has often looked like a winning total, Warner alone scored 135 off 69, the highest individual score in Champions league history, his second Twenty20 century, and considering the slow-and-low conditions one of the best T20 centuries. In the process he took New South Wales to the top of Group A, and through to the semi-final.

There was brute hitting involved, but that was only the latter part of the systemic dismantling of the Chennai Super Kings, who too had a chance of making it to the next round at the start of the match. That, though, was only until Warner started bringing the Super Kings down to their knees. After that all they could do was watch befuddled, and perhaps admire. They sure did beeline for Warner, to shake his hand once he was done.

They were not sure which hand to shake, though, for Warner frequently switched hands to bat like a right-hand batsman. With the "other" hand, he scored 22 off six balls. Only once did he miss. At the receiving end of three of those hits was R Ashwin, the Super Kings' ace and one of the best IPL bowlers. The other ace that Warner trumped was his New South Wales state team-mate Doug Bollinger, who went for 48 in his three overs.

With attack the only option left for the Super Kings in their chase, Michael Hussey and Suresh Raina scored 65 off 41 balls between them, but once the wickets started falling, the slowness of the track reappeared, and batting didn't quite look that easy. The Super Kings needed to win in 17 overs to qualify for the semi-final, but that just seemed to mock the defending champions.

Their destruction, though, began with Shane Watson who hit Bollinger for three fours in the second over of the innings. He was not in full control, but it forced the Super Kings to introduce Ashwin in the third over. A Murali-Pietersen moment was about to arrive. Warner changed his stance to the fifth ball from the spinner, switched the grip, got under the ball, and went over what was cover for his original stance. In Ashwin's next over Warner repeated the dose, and at 41 for 0 after five overs the Super Kings didn't seem to have any answers.

Ashwin came back to dismiss Watson for 21 off 19 with a carrom ball, but the Super Kings never recovered. NSW promoted last match's hero Steven Smith, and he and Warner pushed the fielders with canny placement and aggressive running in the initial stages of the innings. Shadab Jakati dropped Warner off the last ball of the 10th over. That was cue enough for Warner to launch from 73 for 1.

Warner was 40 off 29 then, and scored 95 off his last 40. The second assault, too, began with a switch hit. Raina was at the receiving end this time. The coup de grace, though, was even more brutal. Bollinger came back in the 13th over, and met a lovely straight drive for a six and a short-arm pull for four. Warner stood steady in the crease, and swung at whatever length Bollinger bowled.

Jakati's flat non-turners were fair game for some smashing, and he duly went for 15 runs in the 14th. Warner waited for Raina to fire them in in the 15th, and lofted him for a four and six too. Ashwin came back to take his punishment, to be switch-pulled for a six. Well and truly rattled, the Super Kings began misfielding all over the place.

Some more punishment remained, though. This time for Dwayne Bravo, the only man with respectable figures of 3-0-19-0, including a drop off his bowling. As with Bollinger, Warner stayed still with Bravo too. The full balls went for two straight sixes. Almost forgotten was as big a six that Moises Henriques hit. Almost forgotten was that Steven Smith played a handy innings of 31 off 29, keeping Warner on strike as much as possible.

The night, though, was about Warner. He would go on to switch-hit Bravo for a four past what was originally mid-off. For the photo album he would launch Bollinger onto the roof and out of the stadium, and watch in admiration, shielding his eyes with his hand, the way you would when watching a plane in mid-afternoon.

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • RandyOZ on October 7, 2011, 5:57 GMT

    Hughes is better than Warner, by obviousness!

  • hyclass on October 7, 2011, 4:40 GMT

    @zenboomerang.If youre going to compliment me by copying my words,you could also copy my work ethic,observation & research.Not only are his career numbers there in both formats,but his last 12 months as well along with comparative figures for contenders that factually demonstrate why your statement is more hype than substance.Your original blog called Warner a,'gritty player similar to Langer'.Im confident that the last player anyone would associate with Warner,is Justin Langer.The difference in their S/R is substantial.Warner has 2-1st class 100s,406 runs in 1st class cricket in Australia and 737 1st class ever at a S/R of 69.Justin Langer has 28000 runs and 86 1st class 100s.His Test S/R is 54.Your statement on NSW is refuted by the facts.Given his indifferent 1st class form in earlier seasons & poor List A record,NSW were compelled to pick those who were succeeding.Warner scored 47 & 2 in 2010/11 Shield final.Hughes 138 & 93.Your entire premise is built on 2-1st games in Zimbabwe.

  • Dismayed on October 6, 2011, 11:52 GMT

    I will take Warner as my opener in all forms going forward, his development has outstripped that of others in the last 12 months plus what I have seen of his leggies looks quite decent. He has shown he is much more than a "hitter" his innings the other day was controlled as has his batting been for the last 12 months or so.

  • zenboomerang on October 6, 2011, 11:39 GMT

    @hyclass... Your comment lacks credibility as you didn't look at the last 12 months as my comment stated. Warner said last summer that he was focusing on the longer format. He has changed his batting style and is now a far better batsman. Last 3 matches = 211; 48+82; 152. Warner knows how to handle the short ball. Mick Malthouse is looking for a job in CA, now there is someone who understands players in form and out of form...Ponting and Clarke would have been tossed early last summer and may have proved the selectors wrong with some good Shield performances...or not...

  • Haleos on October 6, 2011, 8:41 GMT

    @hyclass - what u said was not choking but getting trashed. isnt there a difference?

  • Haleos on October 6, 2011, 8:40 GMT

    @symsun - look at how RCB won yesterday. Bet if it was a South African team would have collapsed under 100. Both the south africans teams have choked in this tournament. We ahve two Indian, One Aussie and One English team in the semis and still u say Indians are chokers. Choking is when u r absolutely winning and u loose. The important matches which India lost to aussies were one sided. Aussies were at their prime. We never choked unlike u guys who choke at every possible/impossible oppurtunity. Get the defination of choking right.

  • Haleos on October 6, 2011, 8:39 GMT

    @symsun - look at how RCB won yesterday. Bet if it was a South African team would have collapsed under 100. Both the south africans teams have choked in this tournament. We ahve two Indian, One Aussie and One English team in the semis and still u say Indians are chokers. Choking is when u r absolutely winning and u loose. The important matches which India lost to aussies were one sided. Aussies were at their prime. We never choked unlike u guys who choke at every possible/impossible oppurtunity. Get the defination of choking right.

  • deadite11 on October 6, 2011, 6:42 GMT

    MSD got mentally blows after England series, so it affect CSK's performance, fatigue and injury are the other concerns, however this league has very shorter games which creates no room for recovery. by chance number of matches would ve changed the fate. Anyways i can say it was a purely one man show. warner who struggled past 3 matches he clicked in the 4th. thats the game, one day if u play worst and the other day it waits for you.. The interesting fact is now Champions of all the nations got eliminated..

    NOW IT WAS A RUNNER UPS LEAGUE!!

  • hyclass on October 6, 2011, 0:21 GMT

    @sawifan...Nice try.I find your,'True blue Aussie'statement particularly unconvincing,especially as no-one ive met in 45 years since i was born here would use those words.While theres a brilliant John Williams song called,True Blue'the term is more an advertising gimmick than existing in the common vernacular.The last VB series v India dates back to 2003.Australia won that final by 208 runs so if youre going to be so ungracious towards@symsun about his facts,youd do well to have yours in order.I believe you mean the Commonwealth Bank Series in 07/8 that India won.Certainly reaching back 4 years for a result hardly creates a compelling case.Were we to delve further into India/Australia cricket history,it would not reflect well on India.Im happy for India to be doing well.Most Australians prefer quality contests to walk overs.Given Indias 4 nil thrashing by England earlier this year,the same England who beat SL and thrashed Australia,Id be a little more circumspect about Indias standing

  • hyclass on October 5, 2011, 23:18 GMT

    @gandabhai.To most Australians,20/20 is barely cricket,so theyre not going to form career defining judgements on what often amounts to chance.While Warner made a 100 that appears to validate his quality,Harris made an equally compelling one for Sth Australia & isnt mentioned in the same breath.The more it occurs,the greater the sense of diluted quality in 20/20.Dhonis record is excellent in ODI.His recent Test form however has slipped to average only 29 in his last 6 series since SA 09.It hardly qualifies as genius.There is also the diminution of his status in international circles over the umpire Harper incident during the WI series. All international captains & players would have been sanctioned,fined &/or suspended for bringing the game into disrepute.Ultimately,the absence of DRS,made that behaviour possible.8 of 9 of Harpers disputed decisions were subsequently proven correct by DRS technology off field.Harpers record is peerless.Dhonis lack of contrition remains a low point.

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