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Chennai Super Kings beat Mumbai Indians by 7 wickets

Riding on yet another superb innings by Matthew Hayden (60), Chennai Super Kings assured themselves of a semifinal berth while ending Mumbai Indians’ hopes with a seven-wicket triumph in their Indian Premier League match here on Saturday.

Set a target of 148 by Mumbai built largely on JP Duminy’s knock of 62, Chennai once again relied heavily on Hayden to romp home with five balls to spare.

Hayden was not his usual explosive self to start with but soon cut loose to help Chennai recover from a rather wobbly start.

The Australian opener, who is currently the leading run-scorer of the tournament, hit his fifth fifty of the event in the process. Hayden also shared a match-winning 87-run partnership with skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni (23).

The burly left-hander hit Harbhajan Singh for a massive six in the 17th over to complete his fifty. In fact, that one Harbhajan over turned the match in Chennai’s favour as the temperamental off-spinner conceded 17 runs in it.

After their bowlers did a fine job to restrict Mumbai to 147 for five, Chennai’s chase didn’t get off to a very good start as Parthiv Patel was dismissed off the very first ball by Lasith Malinga, who trapped the Indian leg-before.

Suresh Raina did not last long either and was brilliantly caught and bowled by Dwayne Bravo after a quickfire 20 off 12 balls that included two fours and an equal number of sixes.

Earlier, electing to bat after winning the toss, Mumbai was dealt an early blow when Dwayne Bravo’s (5) stumps were knocked off by Albie Morkel in the second over.

Sanath Jayasuriya then played out a blistering 30-run knock that came off just 17 balls. Sri Lanka’s ageless warrior, who had been slightly off-colour with the bat, smashed three fours and a couple of sixes before top-edging a Sudeep Tyagi delivery to Suresh Raina at cover.

Jayasuriya’s dismissal slowed down Mumbai’s scoring rate and the team went into the strategy break with 72 runs in their first 10 overs.

Mumbai suffered another setback after the break when skipper Sachin Tendulkar (11) holed out to Lakshmipathy Balaji at deep midwicket off a Raina delivery.

It was left to J P Duminy, yet again, to steer the innings and he lived up to the task with a 54-ball 62.

The South African combined with Abhishek Nayar for a 65-run fourth-wicket stand that was ultimately crucial in Mumbai posting a respectable total on board.

Of the bowlers, Muttiah Muralitharan was not among the wickets but bowled a miserly spell, giving away just 19 runs in his four overs.

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