Winning streak: Suresh Raina dives to try to stop a shot from a Delhi Daredevils batsman
CHENNAI Super Kings virtually sealed a playoff berth after fifties from skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Subramaniam Badrinath took them to an 18-run victory over Delhi Daredevils in the Indian Premier League yesterday. Opting to bat first, Chennai got off to a sluggish start before Dhoni clobbered four sixes and five fours for an unbeaten 63 off 31 balls. Badrinath chipped in with a brisk 55 to steer the home team to 176 for four. With their skipper on song, Chennai milked 50 runs off the last three overs that made all the difference in the end and Dhoni’s men now top the points table after maintaining their unbeaten home record. Delhi clearly missed injured captain Virender Sehwag and James Hopes tasted defeat in his first outing as the stand-in skipper as the team managed 158 for six at the MA Chidambaram Stadium. Irfan Pathan (44 not out) and Y Venugopal Rao (30) kept Delhi competitive but they could did not get the late charge that was required to complete a successful chase. The Chennai duo of Dwayne Bravo and Ravichandran Ashwin claimed two wickets apiece to strangle Delhi, who now lie eighth in the points table.
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