Mumbai: Chennai Super Kings were crowned Indian Premier League III champions after thumping Mumbai Indians by 22 runs in a thrilling summit clash on Sunday.
Electing to bat, Chennai posted 168 for five, thanks to Suresh Raina’s unbeaten 57 and then restricted Mumbai to 146 for nine to win their maiden IPL title in the grand finale at the packed D Y Patil Stadium.
Chennai though had to spend some anxious moments towards the close of Mumbai run chase with big-hitting Kieron Pollard threatening to almost singlehandedly win the match before he was out in the penultimate over for a 10-ball 27 which was studded with three fours and two sixes.
For Chennai, who have been playing in their second final after finishing runners-up to Rajasthan Royals in 2008, it has been a roller coaster ride having made it to the semifinal in their last league match.
Mumbai, who were playing in an IPL final for the first time, were the most consistent side in the tournament having won 10 of their 14 league matches, but they faltered at the final hurdle.
Chennai Super Kings Suresh Raina celebrates the dismissal of Mumbai Indians Sachin Tendulkar during the Indian Premier League-3 match in Navi Mumbai on Sunday. PTI
For Mumbai, captain Sachin Tendulkar, who declared himself fit for the grand finale after sustaining a right hand webbing split in first semifinal, top-scored with a 45-ball 48 which was studded with seven fours but he did not get enough support from his batting colleagues.
Tendulkar’s 66-run stand from 58 balls for the second wicket with Abhishek Nayar was the only substantial partnership for Mumbai.
Left-arm spinner Shadab Jakati emerged the most successful Chennai bowler with two for 26 while Doug Bollinger, Albie Morkel, Muttiah Muralitharan and Suresh Raina took a wicket apiece.
Mumbai began their run chase of 169 on a shaky note with opener Shikhar Dhawan failing to score the opening over from Ravichandran Ashwin and was out in the second over bowled by Bollinger for an eight-ball duck.
Mumbai struggled for runs before Tendulkar and Nayar took 10 runs from the fifth over by hitting a four each off Ashwin.
Tendulkar, who celebrated his 37th birthday yesterday, then smote Albie Morkel for two fours to take Mumbai to 33 for one after the first power-play.
With off-spinner Muralitharan introduced in the seventh over, runs came in trickles and he was unlucky not to have got Nayar with Matthew Hayden dropping the batsman when on eight.
Nayar struck two sixes in as many balls off Jakati in the 10th over to take Mumbai score to 58 for one at the halfway mark.