The fact that Dale Steyn started Chennai Super Kings' innings with a probing maiden only highlights the hiding the other bowlers received. Ravindra Jadeja cut him behind point for two boundaries before the gap was plugged but still the South African conceded just 17 from his four overs. Ishant
Sharma, Thisara Perera and even Amit Mishra would have done any sacrifice to return such figures.
Instead they were left flustered and unsure after feeding CSK batsmen a steady supply of low full tosses and overpitched deliveries. The men in yellow feasted on them despite taking nine deliveries to get off the mark. And Hyderabad gifted Suresh Raina a free-hit off the last ball of the innings. He duly spanked that over extra-cover for four, finishing with the highest score in Hyderabad this season. And Raina might not have reached 99 not out had Karan Sharma not dropped him at point off Mishra when on 26.
But what about that man Michael Hussey?
He gave every respect Steyn deserves, conceded a maiden and then dispatched Ishant for two boundaries. Sharma changed ends but Murali Vijay picked out almost the same spot to whack him for three consecutive sixes, the last with utter disdain, over mid-wicket.
By facing more balls at the outset, he gave Vijay time to settle down but upped the ante at the same time. Nothing went past him and Hyderabad helped his cause by bowling to his strength; till Raina took over in the middle of the innings, carting the bowlers with clean hits.
The 100-run partnership came off 64 balls in double quick time and at 152/1 with four overs still remaining, it was perfect for CSK to go ballistic - scoring 87 runs off the last 24 balls.
The chase was never on. Parthiv Patel played bravely but wickets kept falling at regular intervals. Shikhar Dhawan paid the prce for for responding to Patel's call for an impossible single. Mishra was run out after Karan Sharma's shot kissed Jadeja's hand before crashing into the stumps. Perera and Karan threatened, but an unruffled Chennai didn't mind their slogs as long as another win was pocketed. And another fortress was breached.