By virtue of the win in the second qualifier, two-time champion Chepauk sealed its spot in the TNPL title clash for a record-extending fourth time. In the decider scheduled for Sunday, CSG will be up against first-time finalist Ruby Trichy Warriors.
Opting to field after winning the toss on Friday, Chepauk bowled Dindigul out for a paltry 103 in its quota of 20 overs. Chasing a below par total of 104 for a berth in the final, CSG cruised to the target with four overs to spare as skipper Kaushik Gandhi (53 off 41 balls, 7 fours, 1 six) roared back to form with a half-century. Sai Kishore was the wrecker-in-chief, bagging three DD wickets to swell his tally to 11 for the season.
The 24-year-old accounted for the big-hitting duo of Mani Bharathy (0) and R Vivek (7) while also sending debutant opener Vimal Khumar (11) back to the pavilion.
Fellow left-arm spinners R Alexander (2 for 3 in 2 overs) and Manimaran Siddharth (1 for 17 in 4 overs) also impressed as Dindigul never got going with the bat. But, Dragons captain Hari Nishaanth did put on a show, notching up his 11th half-century in the TNPL. The left-handed opening batsman played a lone hand, creaming 56 runs off 46 balls, a knock that included four maximums and two boundaries. Following Hari Nishaanth’s dismissal off Harish Kumar in the 14th over, Dragons caved in, losing its last five wickets for 20 runs.
Defending champion Chepauk made light work of the chase, getting the job done in 16 overs. Kaushik played a captain’s knock while opening the batting, hitting his second fifty of TNPL Season 5. S Radhakrishnan (16 not out off 15 balls) and U Sasidev (13 not out off 13 balls) remained unbeaten at the end.
Brief Scores: Dindigul Dragons: Hari Nishaanth 56, M Silambarasan 11, Vimal Khumar 11; Ravisrinivasn Sai Kishore 3/14, Ramadoss Alexander 2/3 Chepauk Super Gillies: Kaushik Gandhi 53, Narayan Jagadeesan 21, Radhakrishan 16; Rangaraj Suthesh 1/12, S Swaminathan, 1/23