Faf du Plessis scored a scintillating 86 as Chennai Super Kings defeated the Kolkata Knight Riders by 27 runs at Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Friday.
After being asked to bat first by KKR skipper, CSK got off to a fantastic start with openers Du Plessis and Ruturaj Gaikwad adding 61 runs for the opening stand.
The former South African batsman had a lucky escape when Dinesh Karthik missed a stumping off Shakib Al Hasan on 2.
Sunil Narine however finally provided the breakthrough by dismissing Gaikwad caught at long off for 32.
Robin Uthappa then joined in and took on Knight Riders bowlers right from the word go. The veteran scored a quickfire 31 before he was dismissed leg before wicket by Narine.
The 37 year old Du Plessis along with Moeen Ali added 68 runs for the third wicket before the former perished in the final delivery, caught at long on for 59 ball-86, as the Super Kings posted a mammoth 192/3 in their allotted 20 overs.
Ali remained unbeaten on 37.
For Knight Riders Sunil Narine was the pick of the bowlers with figures of 2/26, while Shivam Mavi claimed a solitary wicket.
Chasing 193, Kolkata opening pair of Venkatesh Iyer and Shubman Gill got their side off to a blistering start. Iyer got a reprieve early on in his innings when MS Dhoni dropped a relatively easy catch off Josh Hazlewood on 0.
The left hander capitalized on the opportunity by scoring a sparkling 50 before he was dismissed by Shardul Thakur caught at deep point by Ravi Jadeja.
Nitish Rana who came in at No 3, fell cheaply as he chipped a Thakur delivery to Du Plessis at mid off for a duck.
Sunil Narine’s promotion didn’t work for Knight Riders as the Trinidadian fell to a brilliant catch at deep midwicket by Jadeja off Josh Hazlewood.
Deepak Chahar claimed the prize scalp of Gill as he missed a scoop and was trapped in front for 51 leaving Knight Riders in a spot of bother at 108/4.
Dinesh Karthik began his innings by smashing Chahar for a six over deep backward square leg. However he perished for 9, swinging a Jadeja’s short ball to Ambati Rayudu at deep backward square leg.
Skipper Eoin Morgan’s poor run with the bat continued as he fell to an outstanding catch by Deepak Chahar at fine leg boundary off Hazlewood for 4.
Shivam Mavi and Lockie Ferguson swung their bat around in the final overs as Kolkata ended up with 165/9, giving CSK a 27 run win.
Shardul Thakur was the pick of the bowlers for Chennai with figures of 3/28, while Hazlewood and Jadeja claimed 2 wickets each.
With this victory, Chennai Super Kings won their fourth title in IPL history.
Du Plessis was named the Player of the Match for his outstanding knock.