IPL: Kolkata Knight Riders beat Kings Eleven Punjab by 31 runs

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Earlier, a consistent duo of Shikhar Dhawan and Kane Williamson stitched second successive century-plus stand and struck consecutive fifties to guide Sunrisers Hyderabad to a competitive 179/4.

Pune: Opener Ambati Raydu (100 n o, 62b, 7×4, 7×6) smashed his maiden century in the IPL as Chennai Super Kings (CSK) coasted to an easy eight-wicket win over Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) to virtually seal a play-off berth here, Sunday.

On what was an off day for their bowlers, Shikhar Dhawan and skipper Kane Williamson had stepped up with the bat as Sunrisers gunned down a 188-run target easily, thereby showcasing their all-round might.

CSK's batting has clicked with all the players getting runs under their belt with Australian Shane Watson, Ambati Rayadu, Suresh Raina, Dhoni and West Indian Dwayne all in good form. Shane Watson looked well with his bat and he added 57 runs off 35 balls before he got run out.

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They now have 14 points from 11 matches and they just need one win from the three games in hand.

In the last match against Delhi Daredevils, SRH successfully chased a mighty total of 187 set by DD and that too with 9 wickets in hand. He was once again right on the money to just concede 16 runs and bag the prized scalp of English opener. Harbhajan gave way 26 runs from his two overs, while Jadeja leaked 24 from the same number of overs. However, at the half way stage of the game, the hosts would know that they have possible let the game slip away a little after dominating the proceedings in the first 10 overs of the game. Out of nowhere, they had 130 runs on board by the end of the 15th over.

Williamson was dismissed via an excellent catch by West Indian star Dwayne Bravo, who produced a stunning running effort on the third man boundary. Not only was the 123-run stand broken, but Hyderabad also slipped to 141 for 3 in the 17th over, with two new batsmen in.

With clouds hovering over the stadium and Hyderabad having the likes of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Sandeep Sharma renowned to swing the ball, the challenge seemed stiff for Chennai. The Aussie fell short of the crease as he looked too exhausted and made his descent towards the pavilion straight away. However, the MS Dhoni and co will be back at their home for the season and will look to resume winning ways against a side which has made defending low scores an art form. He upped the ante even further after the landmark, striking clean and big around the ground. The form of Manish Pandey in that batting unit is definitely a matter of concern and if Manish Pandey finds his touch SRH will become even more unsafe.

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