CSK vs KKR clashes have always proven to be a memorable contest for the past 12 years. What had initially started in 2008 as a test of authority between former Indian captain Sourav Ganguly and the then rising skipper MS Dhoni was carried over to Gautam Gambhir over the years, who provided an equal impetus to the exciting fixture.
Consequently, although CSK hold a much superior head-to-head – winning 13 of the 21 times – against KKR, they were mostly close matches that left the IPL with carcasses of some classic counters in its wake.
Here are three classic CSK vs KKR matches that have taken place over the years.
CSK vs KKR AT CHENNAI, IPL 2012 FINAL
It had taken five long years, since that uber promising IPL opening night by KKR in Bangalore, for Team Kolkata to finally reach the tournament final under Gautam Gambhir’s captaincy. The initial KKR side had undergone an overhaul – both at the playing and coaching levels – and there stood CSK between them and their maiden IPL trophy.
KKR were seeking revenge for their loss against CSK in the qualifier but Michael Hussey and Murali Vijay’s 87-run opening stand had signalled Chennai’s threat early on. Eventually, CSK had posted a mammoth target of 191 courtesy of Suresh Raina’s 38-ball 73.
KKR couldn’t have started any worse as their in-form skipper Gautam Gambhir was dismissed in the very first over. However, it was an unusual Manvinder Bisla who ended up forging a 136-run stand with Jacques Kallis to take the match close. In the end, late contributions by Shakib al Hasan and Manoj Tiwary ensured that KKR lifted the trophy for the first time.
KKR VS CSK AT EDEN GARDENS, IPL 2013
One of the few low-scoring KKR vs CSK encounters took place on April 20, 2013 at the Eden Gardens. The defending champions weren’t at their best throughout the season and fell prey to CSK’s spinners – Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravinder Jadeja. Bowling first, the duo had taken five wickets jointly to reduce KKR to a paltry 119.
After KKR had seen a decent 46-run opening stand by Gambhir and Yusuf Pathan in the powerplay overs, fans could hardly predict the total. However, KKR were reduced from 46/1 to 119/9 in 20 overs and they were staring at an easy defeat at the interval. But, Eden Gardens’ bowling friendly pitch favoured the hosts as well, with most of their bowlers getting great returns in their four-over quota.
The match will also be remembered for CSK choosing to open with Hussey and Ashwin as they paid the price by getting reduced to 71/5 by the 16th over. In the end, CSK needed 31 from 19 balls and a handy Jadeja got the job done for CSK by hitting 36 came off just 14 deliveries to win the game in the 20th over.
CSK vs KKR AT CHENNAI, IPL 2011
With Gautam Gambhir still finding his feet in KKR colours and experimenting with the combinations at his disposal, Team Kolkata had visited MA Chidambaram Stadium on April 8, 2011.
Chennai’s slow and complicated wicket proved to be a hard pitch to bat on as Murali Vijay was dismissed for four runs. A lively Srikkanth Anirudha and Suresh Raina, however, had stitched together an 80-run stand before MS Dhoni’s steady innings saw CSK end with 153/4 after 20 overs.
The target was gettable with KKR having enough batting depth to get the job done. An opening 64-run stand between Bisla and Kallis had put the match in KKR’s favour early on, but a string of dismissals following the 15th over meant KKR needed nine off the final over. Tim Southee conceded just six runs to win the match for CSK by 2 runs.
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