DUBAI: Ruturaj Gaikwad became the third batter in Chennai Super Kings (CSK) history to cross the 600 runs mark in an Indian Premier League (IPL) season.
Gaikwad achieved this feat in Qualifier 1 against Delhi Capitals (DC) at the Dubai International Stadium on Sunday in which three-times champion reigned supreme to seal their spot in IPL final for the ninth time.
Gaikwad scored a match-winning 70 off 50 balls with 5 fours and a six to help CSK chase down 173 against DC with 4 wickets in hand and two balls to spare. Robin Uthappa (63) and MS Dhoni (18 not out) also played crucial knocks for CSK.
Michael Hussey and Ambati Rayudu are the only other two players who have amassed 600 runs in a season for CSK in the past. Hussey did it in 2013 when he scored 733 while Rayudu made it happen in 2018 by amassing 602 runs.
Talking about this season of IPL, the only batter ahead of Gaikwad is Punjab Kings captain KL Rahul who currently holds the Orange Cap with 626 runs. At third resides Shikhar Dhawan (551) and then Faf du Plessis (547) and Glenn Maxwell (498) completing the top five.
In the last two overs of Qualifier 1, CSK needed 24 runs but Avesh Khan dismissed set batsman Ruturaj Gaikwad on the first ball. Dhoni whacked a six and match came down to 12 needed off the last six balls. In the final over, Tom Curran removed Moeen Ali but Dhoni held the nerves and smashed three fours to seal the CSK’s spot in the summit clash.