Brathwaite strikes, but Bravo's CSK reach IPL final

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

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MUMBAI, India (CMC) — Carlos Brathwaite struck his Indian Premier League (IPL) career-best score, but it was not enough to prevent table-toppers Sunrisers Hyderabad from going down by two wickets to Dwayne Bravo's Chennai Super Kings in the first play-off game here yesterday.

Sent in at Wankhede Stadium, Sunrisers were on the ropes at 88 for six in the 15th over before Brathwaite produced a sterling unbeaten 43 from 29 balls to lift the innings up to 139 for seven off their 20 overs.

The West Indies Twenty20 captain, in only his second match of the season, struck one four and four sixes, as he dominated a 51-run seventh wicket stand with Bhuvneshwar Kumar (7).

Brathwaite began slowly, gathering just seven runs from his first 15 deliveries before teeing off with two consecutive sixes off seamer Shardul Thakur at the start of the 18th over, which eventually leaked 17 runs.

The Barbadian once again got stuck into Thakur in the final over, lashing two sixes and a four as 20 runs came from the last six balls of the innings.

Captain Kane Williamson and Yusuf Pathan had earlier both scored 24, but medium pacer Bravo snatched two for 25 from his four overs to help CSK made inroads.

In reply, CSK found themselves reeling at 62 for six in the 13th over before South Africa's Faf du Plessis stroked a match-winning unbeaten 67 from 42 balls to put his side into next Sunday's final with five balls to spare.

He added 30 for the seventh with Deepak Chahar (10) and a further crucial 27 for the ninth wicket with Thankur (15 not out).

The contest was still in the balance at the start of the 18th over with CSK requiring 43 from 18 balls for victory, but seamer Brathwaite conceded 20 runs from his third over to simplify the equation for CSK.

Seventeen runs then gushed from the next over, leaving CSK with a mere six to get from the final over.

Bravo had earlier fallen cheaply in the 12th over, edging a long hop from Afghanistan leg-spinner Rashid Khan to slip for seven.

Brathwaite finished wicket-less from his three overs which cost 31 runs.

Sunrisers will have a second chance to reach the final when they face the winner of Wednesday's second playoff match between Kolkata Knight Riders and Rajasthan Royals in the second qualifier tomorrow.

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