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IPL 2024: Stoinis' 124* tops Gaikwad's 108*, helps Lucknow conquer fortress Chepauk (Ld)

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IPL 2024: Stoinis' 124* tops Gaikwad's 108*, helps Lucknow conquer fortress Chepauk (Ld)

Chennai, April 24 (Ajit Weekly News) After Ruturaj Gaikwad smashed a century to propel Chennai Super Kings to a target of 210, Marcus Stoinis struck his maiden IPL century to single-handedly take Lucknow Super Giants to six wickets victory with nine balls to spare over Chennai Super Kings at M.A. Chidambaram Stadium here on Tuesday.

Stoinis also broke the highest individual score in an IPL chase of Paul Valthaty’s 120* in 2011, also against CSK, after scoring 124 not out in 63 deliveries. In three games before this, no team has come to Chepauk this season and beaten CSK. No team has come here and chased down 211. LSG did both in the same match, led by a magnificent hundred by Stoinis. The match-changing over was Shardul Thakur’s 16th over as LSG needed 74 in 30 deliveries. Nicholas Pooran and Stoinis knew they had to make it a big one because the remaining four were to be bowled by Mustafizur and Pathirana. Pooran made sure LSG didn’t miss out and smashed the first three balls for 6, 4, 6. In all, 20 runs came from it. LSG now needed 54 off 24 deliveries as the asking rate came down to 13.5.

Pooran looked to take on Pathirana as well but ended up miscuing it to Thakur at long-off. Deepak Hooda was the new batter and smashed his second ball over deep square-leg for a six.

Stoinis, meanwhile, brought up his maiden IPL hundred, off 56 balls. LSG needed 32 off two overs. Hooda hammered Pathirana for two fours, to go with one from Stoinis to collect 15 from the penultimate over. They needed 17 from the last over and Mustafizur Rahaman was given the responsibility to defend that. But Stoinis launched the first ball over long-on before drilling the next one straight back for four.

Luck, too, favoured him as the next one raced to the right of the short third-man. Fizz had overstepped as well, which reduced the equation to two needed from four balls. On the next, Stoinis moved across and pulled the short ball over backward square leg to seal a 6-wicket victory with three balls remaining.

Chasing a target of 211, Lucknow Super Giants suffered an early strike as Quinton de Kock got out on duck. The batter went for a cut only to chop it back onto his stumps to the swinging delivery outside off. In the first four games of the season, KL Rahul scored at a strike rate of 125.49 in the Power-play. But after that, he smashed it at 185.11 in this phase.

He was looking dangerous once again. After an early wicket, Rahul and Marcus Stoinis kept LSG’s chase on track but Mustafizur Rahman pegged them back. Having hit a four earlier in the over, Rahul went for another big hit but failed to clear Gaikwad at extra cover. Rahut got out after scoring 16. LSG were 45/2 at the end of six overs as Stoinis continued ticking the scoreboard. Devdutt Padikkal came in as an Impact Player. He has struggled for runs this IPL, and it was the same story against CSK as he was on 12 off 16 balls.

Meanwhile, Stoinis has been keeping LSG in the contest almost singlehandedly. He brought up his fifty off 26 balls, with the help of six fours and two sixes. But it’s still an uphill task. LSG were 83/2 after 10 overs and needed 128 from the next ten. A length ball at 151.4 kph in the line of leg stump from Mateesha Pathirana and Padikkal had no answer to it. He backed away but was beaten by pace and had his leg stump uprooted. He departed for 13 off 19 balls. LSG were 88/3 after 11, needing 123 from nine overs.

The sole reason LSG opted to chase was the dew in the second half. And it seemed to be making a difference as a couple of overs ago, Tushar Deshpande bowled a high no-ball. If there was more evidence needed, a cutter into the pitch from Mustafizur came onto the bat nicely – Stoinis hit it straight off the back foot.

Earlier in the match, Ruturaj Gaikwad slammed his second century of the IPL career while Shivam Dube blazed to a blistering 66 off 27 deliveries, which took Chennai Super Kings to 210/4. Gaikwad scored 37 runs in the Power-play and had only twice scored more in this phase in T20s. Coincidentally, his best score in the Power-play (46) was also against LSG and at Chepauk. Gaikwad continued his rich batting form on a tricky pitch as he reached his third half-century of the season in 28 deliveries. CSK were 85/2 after 10 overs.

The in-form Shivam Dube walked to the crease and straightaway sent his fourth delivery for the first maximum of the innings, which came after 12.5 overs. Mohsin bowled one slightly full around off and Dube launched him down the ground for a maximum.

After hitting Stoinis for a six and a four across the allrounder’s two overs, Dube latched onto Yash Thakur and hammered him for three successive sixes in the 16th over. Dube moved to 37 off just 15 balls, and CSK were 154/3 after 16.

It was an excellent innings from Gaikwad – he slammed his sixth hundred in T20 cricket, which came off 56 balls, after a sequence of 6, 4, 4 against Yash Thakur. Gaikwad, at 27 years and 83 days, became the second-youngest captain to score a hundred in the IPL after Sanju Samson.

In the 19th over, Dube smashed two fours and a six against Mohsin and brought up his fifty off just 22 balls. Both batters added 104 runs for the fourth-wicket partnership in just 46 deliveries. Dube started the final over with a six off Stoinis but was run out for 66 off 27 with two balls left in the innings.

That brought MS Dhoni to the middle. Gaikwad took a single on the penultimate ball and Dhoni, as he has done throughout this season, finished off in style with a boundary. He moved towards the offside to a full delivery and muscled it over midwicket for four as CSK finished with 210/4. Skipper Gaikwad remained not out on 108 runs.

Brief score:

Chennai Super Kings 210/4 in 20 overs (Ruturaj Gaikwad 108 not out, Shivam Dube 66; Matt Henry 1-28, Yash Thakur 1-47) lost to Lucknow Super Giants 213/4 in 19.3 overs (Marcus Stoinis 124 not out, Nicholas Pooran 34; Matheesa Pathirana 2-35, Deepak Chahar 1-11) by six wickets.

–Ajit Weekly News

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News Credits – I A N S

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