Chennai v Bangalore, IPL 2011, Final, Chennai May 28, 2011

Vijay stars in Chennai's successful title defence


Chennai Super Kings 205 for 5 (Vijay 95, Hussey 63) beat Royal Challengers Bangalore 147 for 8 (Ashwin 3-16) by 58 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

What would have been on Chennai Super Kings' wish list before this final? 1) Win toss on a slow pitch. 2) Great start by the openers. 3) Remove Chris Gayle for a duck. PS: While we are it why not knock out AB de Villiers and Virat Kohli cheaply? They got all that. Chennai produced a near-perfect game and mauled Royal Challengers Bangalore to lift their second IPL trophy.

M Vijay has rarely converted his starts this IPL and Michael Hussey hasn't sparkled in the previous few games. So what they do on the day of the big finale? They amass a sizzling 159-run partnership to launch Chennai to a massive total at the Chidambaram Stadium. R Ashwin then derailed the chase by packing off Gayle for a duck in the first over. Game over.

It was the ease with which the runs flowed and the calm manner in which they were accumulated by the Chennai openers that caught the eye. There were several big shots but nearly all of them were in conventional zones. There was just one bad shot in the first 14 overs. Just one. In the 10th over, Vijay had just played a nonchalant flick that sailed just clear of a lunging Luke Pomersbach on the deep-midwicket boundary. He then tried to slog the next ball across the line and edged it to the leg side. The reaction of the players reflected their awareness of the need to keep adrenalin in check: Vijay shadow practiced a straighter arc of the bat and Hussey rushed across to have a long chat.

For the duration of the partnership, which lasted 14.5 overs, they complemented each other with contrasting approaches. Hussey punctuated his bunts, chips and drives with the occasional big hit - the highlight was a monstrous heave off Syed Mohammad that crashed into the roof beyond wide long-on. Vijay went the other way. He punctuated his flamboyant on-the-up hits with quieter punches for singles and twos. They both ran between the wickets hard and fast and the scoring-rate never flagged. Vijay grew increasingly tired but it was Hussey who fell first, swatting a full toss from Mohammad to long-on. By then, they had laid a great platform.

It was Vijay who started the mayhem off the final delivery of the second over with a special shot. It was a short-of-length delivery with little room for maneuvering, or so it seemed, but Vijay wafted it on the up and through the line for a flamboyant six over long-on. Hussey pulled the next delivery, from Zaheer Khan, over the backward square-leg boundary to launch the assault. They repeated that double-dose of sixes again. Hussey swung the final delivery of the fifth over, bowled by Mohammad, over the midwicket boundary and Vijay lifted the next ball, from Chris Gayle, over long-on. Chennai reached 56 for 0 in six overs and kept going from strength to strength.

They started their bowling in the same way. Ashwin just needed three deliveries to remove the chief thorn in their path. The first two turned sharply away from Gayle before the third swerved in from round the stumps and skidded on to collect the edge from an attempted cut. de Villiers reeled off a few big shots but was trapped by Shadab Jakati and Suresh Raina had Kohli lbw to sew up the game for Chennai.

In contrast Bangalore slipped on the little things that matter on this stage. In the Powerplay, there were three instances of fielders succumbing to adrenalin rushes and indulging in needless throws; one, from Saurabh Tiwary, even went to the boundary. Pomersbach could have done a better job in seizing that chance from Vijay in the 10th over, and S Aravind messed up an opportunity to run out Hussey in the 12th over. Vijay, the non-striker, had called Hussey for a risky single and Aravind, the bowler who picked up the ball at short mid-on, flung it wide at the non-striker's end. There was another instance in the 11th over when the bowler, Mohammad, flung himself full stretch to his right but couldn't hang on to a difficult chance offered by Vijay. It was that kind of day. Things just didn't go right for Bangalore and everything went according to script for Chennai.

Sriram Veera is a staff writer at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • ILANGOVAN on May 31, 2011, 7:04 GMT

    Friends, Classic Silent Killer spinned down Chris Storm Killer and again proved that IPL 2011 Cricket Supreme King is Chennai Super KIngs. We are also won IPlL 2011 Fairplay Trophy. So dont envy our cool brave CSK talents and all masterminds. We are 11 silence storms which shocked all other 9 best teams in time. Our normal minds in crucial situations makes us winning any team,any scores with normal players. It is the secret which God Krishna says in the Bagavath Geetha. Work is Worship. So CSK works gives them the Championship. No luck is there as all other teams says. So come on CSK guys .. it is again our celebration time with lot of envy on us without sporting spirit. Winner Winner always is the only CSK.

  • Sukumar on May 31, 2011, 4:09 GMT

    RCB was too much dependent on Gayle in batting and Zak,Aravind in bowling. They won 8 matches when Gayle scored magnificently. They lost matches when Gayle failed. In the finals, Vijay& Hussey shone in the batting whereas Ashwin stood as pick of the bowlers. Thats the reason why Chennai won. RCB's chase after Gayle got out was like batting for completing quota of overs rather than attacking CSK bowlers. Through the entire season Badri had been consistent. Vijay,Hussey,Dhoni scored runs whenever team needed. Ashwin,Bollinger had been consistent in the bowling department helped by Jakati,Morkel and Raina. As a combined unit they won matches and the title!!!! Hats off to MSD & CSK...

  • P on May 31, 2011, 2:59 GMT

    Harbhajan's place in the team for too long a favorite of Ganguly and tendulkar but a person who cannot spin the ball is at stake. he proved he is in the Indian team only because of his "connections". High time he is thrown out. To supporters who claim that he has won many matches, here is the answer any other spinner like Pragyan, Mishra, Chawla, Jakati, Rahul would have done far better in those games which Harbhajan took wickets. It is time to show him the door.

  • Bunty on May 31, 2011, 0:19 GMT

    For those guys hinting Srikanth of all people with regionalism do not know what they are talking about. Srikanth as a player and as a captain was way above these petty things. Srikkanth got captaincy in Sachin's debut series and the prospect was to play the great Pakistani team of the time at their home.That team came back with honour even while playing on green wickets (and neutral umpires helped).Even Imran attributed the series to great captaincy from Srikanth and Sri went with fresh bowlers from North and a young batsman from West. As a player he always played for the team be it belting fast bowlers and not caring for his personal centuries or standing close (when he was senior too), and taking some brave catches. So please know your cricket before you hit below the belt to somebody like Cheeka.Just for the record I am from Delhi and I respect Srikant who was a team player first and foremost.

  • Dummy4 on May 30, 2011, 21:25 GMT

    Doesnt it happen in other sports? The grand slam winner gets an advantage for the next year right. Why cant the Winner atleast decide the location of the final matches? Btw if other teams could have eliminated CSK in the league stage or playoff? two other teams could have been playing in a neutral venue. And if CSK had lost their first qualifier and they would have played back to back games. Y arent the RCB fans grateful enuf at having another chance at the trophy after losing the first qualifier while complaining avout back to back matches? Once the schedule was decided, except mayb for RR which was really hectic, anything could have happened to any team.

  • rahul on May 30, 2011, 19:18 GMT

    @dineshcc well we do not hate ashwin but do not callhim the best spinner in INDIA or better than bhajji ....ashwin has got lot to prove........there is difference between class and freakishness......and you can not prove class so early and bhajji is proven contender.....made INDIA proud so many times ...probably the reason why ..when whole INDIA kept on yelling for picking ashwin during WC but dhoni has other do not say dhoni is jealous of him

  • Ramesh on May 30, 2011, 16:45 GMT

    CSK deserve to be the champion, bcos the domestic players Ashwin,Vijay and Badri stand and deliver whenever needed. Not like other team depending upon some overseas players. For all those who hate CSK, here is one gentle reminder! 2010 Champions League Twenty20: Golden Bat for the most run getter in the tournament - M Vijay(294 Runs). Golden Wicket for the most wicket taker in the tournament - R Ashwin(13 Wickets). Man of the Series - R Ashwin. That too they have done this not on their home ground chennai, its in South Africa where the pitch is on the slower side. The both domestic players of CSK performed on this unfamiliar pitch and beaten their country T20 Champions Chevrolet Warriors! Most of the people in the other state complaining like kids, CSK played in home so they win, then why MI were unable to win in IPL 2010 final? CSK will win at all occasions, they do not depend upon pitch. Local players stand brave, not depending upon overseas player to perform for their team!

  • abilash on May 30, 2011, 16:36 GMT

    Dont criticise selection of TN players for the national squad. BADRI, MUKUND, ASHWIN balaji d.kartik yo mahesh vijay are all very good players. They deserve to be picked for INDIA. Selection for the national team should be based on perfomance & not zonal. But N. SRINIVASAN & SRIKANTH has played their part in CSK's victory whether it be during auctions or during matches. The decision that previous winners can decide the final of the nxt tournament is ridiculous!! And one last thing BCCI OFFICIALS should not own or have any relationships with the IPL teams.

  • Arvind on May 30, 2011, 15:33 GMT

    @Jaga2011-RCB would have got a few days rest if they had beat Chennai at Mumbai.

  • j on May 30, 2011, 14:01 GMT

    Congrats CSK. However, all said and done, N Srinivasan owning CSK and being BCCI secretary/president elect is a major conflict of interest and unfairly casts shadows on CSK players who deserve their wins. Please, Mr.NS, quit the BCCI if you want to own your IPL team. And for sure, It was poor scheduling to make the other team RCB play back to back games at the final stages.

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