Wriddhiman Saha scored a responsible 46 not out to set up an 11-run win for the Chennai Super Kings against the Kochi Tuskers Kerala in the Indian Premier League (IPL) on Wednesday.
Saha cracked three sixes and a four in his 33-ball knock as Chennai posted a competitive 152-5 before restricting Kochi to 141-5 on a slow track at the Chidambaram Stadium.
The victory, Chennai’s seventh in a row at home, moved Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s side to the top of the points table with nine wins from 13 outings.
IPL debutants Kochi bowed out of the tournament after going down to their eighth defeat from 14 games in the Twenty20 competition.
Brad Hodge top-scored with an unbeaten 51 off 42 balls to keep Kochi in the hunt, but lacked support from the other batsmen.
Chennai did not get the start that they would have wanted after electing to bat, losing three quick wickets inside nine overs against some fine bowling and catching by paceman Rudra Pratap Singh.
After shattering the off-stump of opener Murali Vijay with a stinging yorker, Singh pulled off a stunning catch of Subramaniam Badrinath by diving to his right and picking the ball inches off the ground.
Australian Mike Hussey, whose clean catch by Parthiv Patel off an attempted paddle sweep was turned down by umpire Rudi Koertzen, lifted the innings briefly with a 37-ball 32.
Saha, a surprise selection in India’s one-day and Twenty20 squad for the upcoming tour of the West Indies, provided the late impetus to take the total past the 150-run mark.