David Warner smashed his second Twenty20 hundred as NSW beat CSK by 46 runs in their must-win CLT20 encounter. (AFP)
Chennai Super Kings Innings:
CSK finish last in Group A, the only side in the tournament with three losses... Who would have thought that at the start? Meanwhile, the win puts NSW on top of Group A with six points, and they progress to the semi-finals along with the Mumbai Indians, who have five points.
So, man-of-the-match Warner's sensational innings of 135*, full of big sixes and switch-hits, ensured Chennai Super Kings were always fighting a losing battle. Michael Hussey and Suresh Raina tried, but to get 202 in just 17 overs proved too much of an ask in the end. T&T, despite their fighting win earlier over the Cape Cobras, are also out after this result.
19th over, NSW win by 46 runs: All over and it's been a dominant performance by NSW as they ensure their qualification from the group, along with the Mumbai Indians. Kulasekara (18) is out, caught by that man Warner, before Bollinger (17) is caught and bowled by Starc to end CSK's misery. Chennai all out for 155 in 18.5 overs.
18th over: All academic now, but Bollinger (13*) and Kulasekara (18*) take CSK to 151/8. They need an impossible 51 runs off 12 balls to win.
17th over: It's even mathematically confirmed now. NSW are through to the semi-finals, along with the Mumbai Indians from Group A, while defending champions CSK and T&T are out. Meanwhile, 14 runs come off that over as Kulasekara hits a four and a six to reach 17*.
16th over: Wickets are tumbling fast now, and CSK face the real danger of being bowled out before their 20 overs. Badrinath is bowled by Clark for 13 in the 15th over soon after hitting a four, while Ashwin is out for one in the next over, caught by Henriques off Smith. Bollinger hits his first delivery for a boundary, while Kulasekara is on 5 at the other end. CSK are at 129/8. NSW are all but through to the semi-finals.
14th over: He did it with the bat, now he's doing it in the field. Warner takes a good catch to dismiss Bravo (16), and then follows it up with a superb piece of fielding to run out new man Wriddhiman Saha before he could even get off the mark. Meanwhile, O'Keefe has bowled well to finish with 3/28. Chennai at 113/6, needing 89 runs off 36 balls. Game all but over.
13th over: Too little, too late? Bravo gets a six and a four as Henriques concedes 15 runs in the 13th over. S Badrinath (6*) is then dropped off the final delivery, but CSK need 91 runs off 24 balls to qualify.
11th over: Chennai are staring at an exit... Skipper Dhoni is out for just 2, caught by Smith off Henriques. Two new batsmen at the crease now, in Dwayne Bravo (2*) and Subramaniam Badrinath (1*), as CSK reach 91/4. Glum faces on the CSK bench and among the crowds, the match is almost out of their reach now.
10th over: Raina did his best to keep Chennai in with a chance, smashing two fours in the 9th over and a four and a six in the 10th. However, with the asking rate climbing, Raina goes for one shot too many. He is out caught by Clark off O'Keefe for a breezy 28. CSK, at 88/3, need another 114 runs in 7 overs to qualify. Mission impossible, it seems now.
8th over: Another success for NSW. Vijay (18) is out bowled by spinner Steve O'Keefe. Skipper Dhoni comes in with his side at 67/2. Meanwhile, Raina (9*) survives, dropped at mid-wicket in the same over. CSK need another 135 runs in 54 balls to qualify.
7th over: Big blow for Chennai as Clark gets Hussey (37) lbw with a slower delivery. Suresh Raina is the new batsman and gets a four off last ball of the over. CSK are at 59/1.
6th over: It's all gone worrying quiet for Chennai now. Still, CSK reach 49 without losing a wicket. One boundary each in the 5th and 6th overs from Michael Hussey (31*) keeps the home side in touch. 153 more needed to qualify from 66 balls.
4th over: Hussey (20*) has been in form and he will have to play a big role if CSK are to pull this chase off in 17 overs. Meanwhile, Vijay (12*) gets the crowd going with a four off the first ball off Pat Cummins in the 3rd over. No boundary in the fourth over though, as CSK reach 33/0.
2nd over: The task in front of them is a tough one, but this is just the start Chennai would have wanted. Michael Hussey (16*) and Murali Vijay (5*) get after the bowlers right from the start, not that they have much choice. Stuart Clark is hit for three boundaries by Hussey in the first over, while Mitchell Starc is equally expensive as CSK power on to 22/0.
New South Wales Blues Innings:
Once Warner got going, there was little Chennai could do as he smashed them all over the park with some amazing shots, playing both left-handed and right-handed. Only Ashwin and Kulasekara conceded less than 10 runs an over, and they were the only CSK bowlers to pick up a wicket as well. Warner's stunning innings means NSW are firm favourites to go through to the last-four. Chennai need to chase down 202 in 17 overs to qualify, otherwise T&T will go through by virtue of a better net run-rate... Only if CSK still win eventually, though! Somebody needs to play a blinder of an innings for Chennai, just like Warner did for NSW!
20th over: No let-up from a tired Warner in the final over as he powers two sixes off the costly Bollinger (0/48). The final six went out of the stadium, and the CSK team could only look on in disbelief. Warner finishes on an amazing 135* (69 balls), which included 11 fours and 8 sixes. Henriques (9*) contributed with one six at the end. Is the game up already for defending champions Chennai?
19th over: The 19th over has been the undoing on many a side in the CLT20, and this time Bravo gives away 24 runs as NSW reach 181/2. Henriques (8*) gets into the act with a six off the first delivery, before Warner (117*) smashes a six, six and then a four. An amazing innings by the Australian, and it has included some unorthodox shots as well.
18th over: Hundred for Warner and what a superb innings it has been! Warner reaches his second T20 ton in just 59 balls, with 10 fours and 4 sixes. Meanwhile, Smith is finally out for an important 31 as he shared a 101-run stand with Warner. Just 3 runs off Kulasekara's over in the 18th, but with Moises Henriques out to partner Warner, NSW are looking ominous at 157/2.
16th over: Warner (94*) is making batting look easy on this Chennai pitch, as he closes in on a T20 century. He gives proper treatment to a short ball from Ashwin, while Smith has quietly reached 25* at the other end. NSW are at 144/1.
15th over: Yet another expensive over and Warner is on fire! A four and a massive six off Suresh Raina; 13 runs off this over. Remember, Chennai need to win big to ensure their net run-rate is better than T&T and qualify.
14th over: Typically aggressive, Warner is doing all the damage now. He smashes a four and a six off Bollinger, who plays for the NSW in Australia, in the 13th over. The next over is equally costly, as Jakati - who dropped Warner earlier - concedes 15 runs. Smith (22*) has supported Warner (76*) well, as NSW reach 121/1. Nothing is going Chennai's way at the moment, and misfields will only make their task tougher.
12th over: Warner hadn't been in form during this tournament so far, but he's chosen the right time to find his touch. The Aussie opener brings up his fifty with his seventh four of the innings. Chennai skipper Dhoni will be worried here, NSW looking good at 91/1. Warner has 51*, Smith 17*.
10th over: Warner (40*) dropped... That could be costly! Shadab Jakati, at point, misjudged the catch and Dwayne Bravo is not pleased. Still, only five runs off that over, as NSW reach the half-way stage at 73/1.
9th over: The slower bowlers are in at both ends now, but NSW are still managing to keep the scoreboard ticking by running well between the wickets. They reach 68/1, with Warner on 38* and Smith on 7*.
7th over: Finally a breakthrough for Chennai, and Watson is out for 21, caught by Dhoni off Ashwin. Watson tried to slog but only ended up top-edging it to the wicket-keeper. Steven Smith is the new man in. Meanwhile, Warner (33*) is threatening to cut loose as NSW reach 55/1.
6th over: This time Warner gets after Ashwin, hitting boundaries off the final two balls of the 5th over. Then 9 runs off Kulasekara's bowling in the 6th over bring up NSW's fifty. A very good start for NSW here, with both Watson (19*) and Warner (29*) looking good.
4th over: Can't keep Warner quiet for long, though! CSK skipper MS Dhoni turns to the spin of R Ashwin in the 3rd over itself, which costs only 6 runs despite a Warner boundary. Meanwhile, Kulasekara replaces Bollinger, whose first over cost 13 runs, at the other end. Another four from Warner takes him to 13* and NSW to 30/0.
2nd over: Good start for NSW, as they reach 17/0. Shane Watson (13*) really took to Doug Bollinger in the second over, hitting three boundaries. Fellow opener David Warner (3*) has had a relatively quiet start.
Toss: New South Wales Blues captain Simon Katich has won the toss and elected to bat first against the Chennai Super Kings in their must-win Champions League Twenty20 match at the MA Chidambaram Stadium on Tuesday.
While NSW go into the match with an unchanged playing eleven, Nuwan Kulasekara comes in for the injured Albie Morkel for Chennai.
After hitting rock-bottom following their defeat at the hands of Trinidad & Tobago, the defending champions Chennai Super Kings have the very same team to thank for still keeping them in content_cnion for the semi-finals, coming into this last Group A game.
T&T beat Cape Cobras by two wickets in their final match, eliminating the Cobras and putting the Mumbai Indians through to the last-four.
NSW's fate is now in their own hands, as a win will be enough to assure their progress. Meanwhile, Chennai need to win - and win big - if they are to edge past T&T on net run-rate and make it to semi-finals.
Nervy times for home side Chennai, then!
New South Wales Blues:
Shane Watson, David Warner, Daniel Smith, Simon Katich (captain), Steven Smith, Moises Henriques, Ben Rohrer, Pat Cummins, Steve O'Keefe, Mitchell Starc, Stuart Clark
Chennai Super Kings:
Michael Hussey, Murali Vijay, Suresh Raina, Subramaniam Badrinath, MS Dhoni (captain), Dwayne Bravo, Wriddhiman Saha, Nuwan Kulasekara, Ravichandran Ashwin, Shadab Jakati, Doug Bollinger