Chennai Super Kings completed a fairy tale comeback from disgrace to glory; clinching their third IPL title after imposing all-rounder Shane Watson single-handedly hammered Sunrises Hyderabad into submission with a blazing hundred in the final here 27 May 2018. Reinstated into the IPL after a two-year ban for their team management’s role in the 2013 spot-fixing scandal, CSK outplayed SRH by eight wickets with Watson’s unbeaten 117 off 57 balls in a high-pressure game being the icing on the cake.
The Australian smashed as many as 11 fours and eight sixes enroute to this second hundred of the season as CSK raced home in 18.3 overs. SRH had posted a challenging 178 for six courtesy Kane Williamson (47 off 36) and Yusuf Pathan (45* off 25). The other in-form CSK batsman, Ambati Raydu, hit the winning four that led to wild celebrations. Watson also shared a 117-run partnership with Suresh Raina (32 off 24) for the second wicket, ensuring a smooth chase for CSK.
Such was Super Kings’ domination over an otherwise formidable SRH that they beat the Williamson-led side four times in as many games this season. The M S Dhoni-captained side had entered a seventh IPL final and their stellar campaign ended with a record equalling third title, tying them up with Mumbai Indians.
The star of the night was one and only Shane Watson. Williamson struck Bravo for consecutive fours in the 12th over and was well in sight of his 9th 50 of the season when Dhoni brought back Sharma who lured him out with a wide ball and got him stumped him off the first ball of a new spell.
Pathan started in aggressive fashion and put on a useful stand of 32 with Shakib before the latter drove Bravo straight to Raina at extra cover and was caught. It was later left to Pathan and big-hitting West Indian Brathwaite to give the total a big boost in the death overs as they added 34 runs in the last three overs.