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Indian Premier League 2019

Spinners lead Chennai Super Kings to victory in IPL opener

by Wisden Staff 3 minute read

Eight wickets between the spin trio of Imran Tahir, Harbhajan Singh and Ravindra Jadeja helped Chennai Super Kings to a seven-wicket win over Royal Challengers Bangalore in the opening game of the 2019 IPL.

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Having been put into bat, Bangalore – possessing the likes of Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers and Shimron Hetmyer – were bowled out for just 70, the sixth-lowest total in IPL history. Only opener Parthiv Patel managed to reach double figures with the bat for RCB, his 29 ending up to be the highest individual score of the match.

In response, Chennai were forced to chase patiently by Bangalore’s bowlers, but eventually reached their target with 14 balls to spare.

The start of the Bangalore innings saw former Mumbai Indians bowler, Harbhajan, come to the fore. The off-spinner removed Kohli for just six, before dismissing Moeen Ali for eight with a return catch off his bowling. De Villiers was Harbhajan’s third victim, before Hetmyer was run out to leave RCB perilously positioned on 39-4 after eight overs.

Tahir then took over Harbhajan’s mantle, the South Africa leg-spinner collecting superb figures of 3-9 from his four overs. Jadeja picked up two wickets, and Dwayne Bravo was required for only one delivery, dismissing Patel to end the Bangalore innings with 17 balls remaining.

Chennai’s batsmen were then forced to bide their time on a turning wicket. Yuzvendra Chahal conceded just six runs from his four overs, but Chennai eventually got over the line with Kedar Jadhav and Jadeja at the crease, giving the home side their first points of the season.

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