Chennai Super Kings beat Royal Challengers Bangalore convincingly by 52 runs (D/L method) to enter the final of the Champions league Twenty20 at Kingsmead, Durban.
Earlier, riding on Suresh Raina’s unbeaten 48-ball 94, Chennai Super Kings posted 174 for four against the Bangalore team in a rain-interrupted semifinal.
Raina, who cracked five fours and six sixes during his breezy stay in the middle, produced an 81-run second-wicket partnership with opener Murali Vijay to help the Indian Premier League champions accumulate a challenging total.
Vijay also extended fine support with a 32-ball 41, which he made with the help of four fours and a six.
Earlier opting to bat, Chennai were 15 without loss in 2.5 overs, with Vijay and Michael Hussey (6) on the crease, when rain started and the players ran for cover.
The proceedings resumed after a two-hour-and-36-minute delay and Chennai suffered their first loss when medium pacer R Vinay Kumar capitalised on the sodden track in the fourth over.
Hussey tried to send the ball across the rope over the long off but South African Dale Steyn took a beautiful catch.
Suresh Raina then joined Vijay in the middle and the duo started attacking the RCB bowlers on a sodden Kingsmead pitch, where the balls were coming to the bat a bit slowly.
In the sixth over, Raina cracked two huge sixes off Virat Kohli’s medium pace. Raina took aerial route to send the second ball of the over to the gallery and then struck him over long on for the maximum again four balls later.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s side were 90 for one after 10 overs.
Desperate for a breakthrough, RCB captain Anil Kumble decided to bring himself to the attack but the legendary spinner could hardly do anything to stop Raina and Vijay both of whom were in rampaging form.
The 81-run partnership came to an end when Vinay Kumar scalped his second wicket in the form of Vijay in the 12th over. Vijay could not negotiate a short ball, mistimed the shot and Kohli pouched an easy catch.
Raina completed his half-century in style, cracking a huge six through midwicket in the last ball of the same over.
Dhoni (11), however, departed cheaply after felling prey to Dillon du Preez.
Albie Morkel (5) then walked out to give company to Raina, who continued with his blistering show, taking 19 runs from the 15th over off Kumble, with the help of two fours and a six, bringing CSK total to 152 for three.
Kumble tried out as many as six bowlers, including himself. Vinay Kumar bagged two wickets for 28 runs, while Preez and Cameron White took one apiece.