From 111 for 0 in 13 overs, Royal Challengers could manage only a below-par 156 for 6
Chennai Super Kings 157 for 4 (Gaikwad 38, Rayudu 32, Harshal 2-25) beat Royal Challengers Bangalore 156 for 6 (Padikkal 70, Kohli 53, Bravo 3-24, Thakur 2-29) by six wickets
Seven straight matches, seven straight losses in the United Arab Emirates. All while setting a target. Royal Challengers Bangalore find themselves in a mid-season rut, and it threatens to undo their good work in the first half of IPL 2021.
If it was a ridiculous batting meltdown in the first game of the restart where they were shot out for 92, they were hampered by a middle-order meltdown here. From 111 for 0 in 13 overs, they ended with a below-par 156 for 6, and then let the loss in momentum boil over on the field.
By the time their spinners tried to make a fist of it, Chennai Super Kings were well on their way as Ruturaj Gaikwad and Faf du Plessis had put on 71 risk-free runs in 8.2 overs. While they fell in successive overs to spin, Ambati Rayudu muscled a quick-fire 32 before MS Dhoni and Suresh Raina saw them home without much stress.
The win not only took Super Kings to the top of the points table but also in a great position to make the playoffs, after the disappointment of 2020 on these very shores.
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Shashank Kishore is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo