CHENNAI: V Ganga Sridhar Raju and a solid death-over outing from pacer G Periyaswamy helped Chepauk Super Gillies book a spot in the final of this edition of Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL), besting Chepauk Super Gillies by five runs in Qualifier 1 in Tirunelveli on Sunday.
Southpaw Raju’s knock laid the foundation for Kaushik Gandhi and his men, as they posted a competitive 169/7 in their quota at ICL ground. The 26-year-old smacked 12 boundaries and two sixes in his knock.
He and fellow opener Gopinath got Chepauk off the blocks quickly, posting a 45-ball, 63-run opening stand before the latter fell to a part-time Hari Nishaanth off-break. Though skipper Gandhi and India all-rounder Vijay Shankar — playing only his second match in the tournament — fell cheaply, U Sasidev (26 off 19) and Murugan Ashwin (14 off 8) biffed a few in the death overs to help their team capitalise on the momentum provided by Raju.
Dindigul seemed to be in the chase for the first half of their innings, with the ever-consistent N Jagadeesan and Nishaanth (29 off 32) stitching together a 64-run opening stand at a steady clip. R Ashwin — who promoted himself to No 3 — and his batsmen were on par with the required rate till the 15th over, before the ball was thrown to Periyaswamy.
His slingy right-arm pace instantly threw a spanner in Dindigul’s chase in the span of just three balls. Sumant Jain (13 off 10) was trapped in front by a pin-point yorker, and Ashwin (22 off 22) holed out at long-on after being unable to get under a slow off-cutter.
Though NS Chaturved (14 off 6) and M Mohammed (18 off 8) tried to hit Dindigul out of trouble, 41 off 18 proved to be too tough an ask. Periyaswamy splayed R Rohit’s stumps with another yorker in the penultimate over, ending his day at 3/27 and setting up an eventual five-run win for Chepauk.
Brief scores: Chepauk Super Gillies 169/7 in 20 ovs (V Ganga Sridhar Raju 81) bt Dindigul Dragons 164/7 in 20 ovs (N Jagadeesan 37; G Periyaswamy 3/27).
Karthik shines for Madurai
Dindigul will get another shot at the final when they take on Madurai Panthers at their home in Qualifier on Tuesday. Madurai beat Kanchi Veerans with five wickets to spare in the Eliminator in Tirunelveli. Chasing 152, Madurai opener KB Arun Karthik scored a 39-ball 64.
Brief scores: Kanchi Veerans 151/6 in 20 ovs (R Sanjay Yadav 77) lost to Madurai Panthers 152/5 in 20 ovs (KB Arun Karthik 64).