IPL 2021 Points Table Today After Latest SRH vs CSK, Match 44: Chennai Super Kings become the first team to qualify for the playoffs with a win over Sunrisers Hyderabad; Faf du Plessis takes third place in Orange Cap tally
Three-time champions Chennai Super Kings became the first team to qualify for the IPL 2021 playoffs with a six-wicket win over Sunrisers Hyderabad in Match 44 of the T20 League at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Thursday. Chasing a target of 135, in-form openers Ruturaj Gaikwad (45 off 38) and Faf du Plessis (41 off 36) put up a perfect start to CSK with a 75-run stand.
A mini-collapse in the middle overs made the chase interesting, before CSK smashed the winning six in 19.4 overs with Dhoni (14 not out on 11) bringing back memories of their heyday.
The three-time former champion thus ended the chase after scoring 139 for four for a six-wicket win. With 18 points from eleven matches, Chennai retained their top spot in the points table while Hyderabad are now out of the tournament.
With their fourth win in as many games since the resumption of the tournament, CSK showed that not making the playoffs last season was just a setback in their successful IPL history.
Sharjah’s pitch, which produced high-scoring games last year, has been the complete opposite this season as its slow nature makes stroke-making difficult. It became easier to bat in the second innings as Gaikwad displayed supreme skill. Most impressive was the confidence with which he played star SRH spinner Rashid Khan.