Pune, April 20 (IANS) A fantastic 106-run knock by opener Shane Watson propelled Chennai Super Kings (CSK) to 204/5 against Rajasthan Royals (RR) in the 17th match of the Indian Premier League (IPL) here on Friday.
The Australian all-rounder took just 51 deliveries to bring up his third IPL century, guided by nine boundaries and six sixes at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium.
Put in to bat, Chennai were off to a decent start as openers Watson and Ambati Rayudu (12) shared a 50-run partnership for the opening wicket in 4.2 overs.
Medium pacer Ben Laughlin drew the first blood for Rajasthan as he sent back Rayudu in the fifth over.
Watson was then joined by Suresh Raina and the duo stitched together a 81-run partnership for the second wicket. Raina chipped in with a crucial 47-run knock before falling in the 12th over to a Shreyas Gopal delivery which left CSK on 131/2.
CSK then lost the wickets of Mahendra Singh Dhoni (5) and Sam Billings (3) with the addition of another 30 runs. It was leggie Shreyas again, who struck to dismiss both the Chennai batters.
Meanwhile, Watson kept the scoreboard ticking and added 41 runs with Dwayne Bravo to take CSK past the 200-run mark. Bravo remained unbeaten on 24 runs facing 16 balls.
The Australian all-rounder however, fell in the last over but it was too late for Rajasthan as CSK posted a massive 205-run target against them.
For Rajasthan, Shreyas was the pick of the bowlers, with figures of 3/20, while Australian Laughlin bagged a couple of wickets conceding 38 runs.
Brief Scores: Chennai Super Kings: 204/5 (Shane Watson 106, Suresh Raina 46; Shreyas Iyer 3/20) vs Rajasthan Royals