Chennai Super Kings extended their incredible consistency in the competition on Tuesday by defeating the tenacious Gujarat Giants by 15 runs on a slick wicket to advance to their 10th IPL final in Chennai.
In Qualifier 1, CSK performed well to reach 172 for 7 on a slow pitch when Hardik Pandya decided to bowl.
It turned out to be far more than a competitive total, given the circumstances, as Gujarat Titans had a rare off day and were dismissed for 157 in 20 overs. With a 16-ball 30 in the closing stages, Rashid Khan unnerved the CSK supporters, but the Titans were unable to capitalise.
The defending champions will have another opportunity to reach the final on Friday in Qualifier 2.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni, the master tactician for CSK, made the most of the home field advantage to advance the four-time champions to their tenth final in 14 tournaments. In the 2016 and 2017 editions, CSK sat out.
Ravindra Jadeja (4-0-18-2) of the left-arm spinner Ravindra did the star turn for the Super Kings with a magnificent spell in which he choked the opposition batters to get revenge for the loss sustained in the tournament opener. Deepal Chahar, Maheesh Theekshana, and Matheesha Pathirana all finished with two wickets.
Ambati Rayudu (17 off 9) made a brief appearance while he was in the crease.