IPL: Raina, Watson help Chennai hand 177-run target to Rajasthan

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Jaipur, May 11 (IANS) A decent batting effort helped Chennai Super Kings (CSK) post a fighting total of 176/4 against Rajasthan Royals in an Indian Premier League (IPL) tie at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium here on Friday.

It was a fine knock by Suresh Raina (52 off 35 balls), followed by skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s unbeaten 33 and opener Shane Watson’s 39 runs which took the yellow brigade to a good total against the hosts.

Opting to bat first, the visitors were off to a quick start as openers Ambati Rayudu and Watson accumulated 19 runs from the first two overs.

However, the decent start was short-lived as Jofra Archer drew the first blood for the hosts, when a short-ball from him took an inside edge to shattered Rayudu’s (12 off 9 balls) stumps in the third over.

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The opener’s fall saw Raina joining Watson in the middle and the duo helped Chennai recover from the early blow taking their side past the 50-run mark in 5.1 overs.

Both batmen further played sensibly and shared an 81-run partnership to help the yellow brigade cross 100-run mark in 11.1 overs.

With the Australian all-rounder inching towards his half-centrury, Archer struck again in the 12th over to pack back a good looking Watson on 39 runs and Chennai’s scorecard reading 105/2.

On the other hand, Raina, who was then accompanied by skipper Dhoni, slammed his half century facing 32 balls however, the southpaw threw his wicket when he failed to read a googly by Ish Sodhi, giving an easy catch to Stuart Binny at short-fine leg.

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With Chennai at 119/3 in 13 overs, Dhoni and Sam Billings (27 off 22) forged a 55-run partnership off 39 balls to put back things in control.

Billings departed in the final over while trying to take a single as wicket-keeper Jos Buttler’s throw from behind demolised the Englishman’s stump.

Dhoni remained unbeaten on 33 runs facing 23 balls, hitting a boundary and a six to help his side reach a fighting total of 176 runs.

For Rajasthan, Archer bagged couple of wickets but leaked 42 runs while Sodhi scalped one conceding 29 runs.

Brief Scores:

Chennai Super Kings: 176/4 (Suresh Raina 52, Shane Watson 39; Jofra Archer 2/42) vs Rajasthan Royals.

–IANS

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