Images from the Chennai Super Kings and Lucknow Super Giants IPL 2023 match at the Chepauk in Chennai on Monday.
Ruturaj Gaikwad, Devon Conway and Moeen Ali starred for Chennai Super Kings to help the team post a 12-run win over Lucknow Super Giants at their fortress -- the M A Chidambaram stadium -- in their opening home match of the ongoing IPL in Chennai on Monday.
Gaikwad slammed his second successive fifty and shared 110 runs for the opening wicket with Conway (47 off 29) as CSK posted a commanding 217 for 7 after being sent into bat. Gaikwad, after his 92 in the opening game, smashed 57 off 31 with three fours and four sixes. Conway, who hit five boundaries and two hits over the fence, gave him good support.
And then Moeen Ali returned with fine figures of 4 for 26 from his overs to help CSK restict LSG to 205 for seven.
Late hitting by Nicholas Pooran (32 off 18 balls, 2x4s, 3x6s) and a furious opening assault by his fellow West Indian Kyle Mayers (53 off 22 balls, 8x4s, 2x6s) went in vain for LSG.
CSK captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, back on home turf, made judicious use of the slow bowlers to ensure the team's first win in this year's IPL.
Veteran Moeen Ali accounted for the wickets of Mayers, LSG skipper K L Rahul, Krunal Pandya and Marcus Stoinis (21) to derail LSG's chase.
Pace bowlers Deepak Chahar (4-0-55-0) and Tushar Deshpande (4-0-45-2), who came in for Ambati Rayudu as Impact Player, bowled three wides and two no-balls in his opening over, in which he conceded 18 runs, disappointed.
The flamboyant Mayers and Rahul raised the team 50 in the fourth over.
Poor bowling by Chahar, Deshpande and Ben Stokes (1-0-18-0) didn't help CSK's cause as they leaked runs in the powerplay as LSG batters posted a strong riposte in pursuit of 218.
Mayers hit a second consecutive fifty to provide LSG a flying start even as Rahul played second fiddle. Having reached 79 in just 5.2 overs, Mayers fell against the run of play, attempting a big hit off Moeen Ali only to be caught in the deep by Conway.
LSG lost Deepak Hooda (2) and Rahul (20), both going for big shots, quickly to slip to 82 for 3 as Ali and Mitchell Santner got into the act.
Earlier, skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni smacked a 89-metre six and another to send the adoring Chepauk crowd into a frenzy.
A delirious crowd had their glimpse of Thala, Dhoni as he carted two big sixes before being dismissed, going for a third off Mark Wood's bowling for 12 off 3 balls.
After the initial blitz by Gaikwad (57 off 37 balls; 3 fours, 4 sixes) and Devon Conway (47 off 29 balls; 5 fours, 2 sixes), there were valuable contributions from Shivam Dube (27 off 16 balls; 1 four, 3 sixes) and Moeen Ali (19).
Wood, who picked up five wickets in LSG's demolition of Delhi Capitals on Sunday, was not as effective and finished with 3 for 49 from his four overs.
LSG managed to put the brakes on the free-scoring CSK batters, thanks to a splendid spell by leg-spinner Ravi Bishnoi (3 for 28 in 4 overs) in the middle overs.
Sent in to bat by LSG captain K L Rahul, Gaikwad and Conway creamed 79 runs in the first six overs taking full advantage of the fielding restrictions as no bowler was spared the stick.
The stylish Gaikwad continued his form from the season opener where he hammered 92 and in the New Zealand left-hander's company brought up the team's 100 in the eighth over.
Gaikwad made batting look so easy as he effortlessly lofted three sixes in K Gowtham's opening over (5th of the innings). He continued to pile on the runs and a flick for a six off the pacy Wood underlined the supreme form he is in.
The CSK openers were on a roll and brought up the 100-run stand in the eighth over as LSG bowlers looked clueless.
Paceman Avesh Khan, who bowled the second over of the innings, conceded 16 runs from his first four deliveries, including four wides as CSK got off to a rapid start.
Khan finished with figures of 1 for 39 in 3 overs which included the big wicket of Ben Stokes (8).
Earlier, the start was delayed by a few minutes as a dog ran onto the field and required a few ground staff to chase it out.