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Chennai thrash Bangalore to retain IPL title

By Bikash Mohapatra
Last updated on: May 28, 2011 23:38 IST
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It was apparent at the toss itself.

When asked about his luck with the coin, Daniel Vettori replied in the negative.

It was as if the Royal Challengers Bangalore captain had resigned to a defeat if he got it wrong at the toss.

- Scorecard

The New Zealander was probably using his rationale, anticipating Chennai Super Kings to bat first in the Indian Premier League final at the MA Chidambaram in case their captain, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, called it correctly.

Chennai had gone into the final with an unbeaten record, having not lost in seven matches at Chepauk. Add to that other factors, like home advantage, crowd support, pressure of batting second et al, and any intelligent captain (which Vettori is) would have realized it was a lost cause if he got it wrong with the coin.

Unfortunately for Vettori, that is precisely what happened. Dhoni won the toss and whatever happened in the three hours that followed seemed perfectly scripted for the home team.

The Chennai openers, Michael Hussey (63) and Murali Vijay (95), put on 159 runs (in just 89 runs) in an impressive display of controlled aggression to all but seal Bangalore's fate.

Murali Vijay and Virat KohliChennai Super Kings went on to score 205 for five in their stipulated 20 overs, the highest total ever registered in an IPL final.

And R Ashwin (three for 16) ensured the home team a perfect start with the ball, dismissing the in-form Chris Gayle for a third-ball duck.

If the fate of the match had not been decided at the toss itself, or after the opening stand for that matter, it was certainly decided with Gayle's first over departure.

Chasing a near impossible task, Bangalore could muster only 147 for eight and finished the bridesmaid again – they were second best to Deccan Chargers in the 2009 final.

For Chennai, it was a successful defence of the title they won last year, and, as mentioned above, a script executed to perfection to deliver a box office blockbuster -- they won by a massive 58-run margin, and in front of their home fans. 

As regards Bangalore, who were so impressive during the tournament, it was as if everything went wrong on the day when it mattered the most.

And it exposed what their critics had been pointing out on a regular basis -- that they were a one-man team.

Gayle scored 608 runs (@ 67.55) – winning the Orange Cap, awarded to the tournament's highest scorer, and the Player of the tournament honours – and took eight wickets to take them to nine wins in the 12 matches he played.

However, in the three matches he failed, Bangalore too failed.

Unfortunately, one of them happened to be the final!

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