Chennai:A heart-stopping 45 from 20 balls by Abhishek Nayar threatened to take Mumbai Indians home - but it was a long shot, and the six-run margin doesn't reveal how far ahead Chennai Super Kings were in the game.
Needing 75 runs from 30 balls, Mumbai looked done and dusted. But some bold hitting later, their captain Harbhajan Singh and local boy Abhishek Nayar scaled down the equation to 19 from 6 balls. Harbhajan hit three sixes in his 28.
With Mumbai raising the heat in humid conditions at the Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai captain MS Dhoni called on his trusted hand Joginder Sharma to bowl the last over. But Nayar, known for big hits in the domestic circuit, retaliated by thumping Sharma for two one-drop fours.
It came down to 11 from 4 balls, when Sharma overstepped and allowed Mumbai a free hit. However, because of a scrambled single, Nayar got off strike, leaving Ashish Nehra to heave at the free hit and miss. The single was a tactical error in the heat, and that was that.
Eight from two balls proved too much for Nayar, who had batted heroically to bring Mumbai back into the game.
Earlier in the day, two feisty fifties from Matthew Hayden and Suresh Raina took Chennai to 208-5 on a good batting wicket. However, the outfield was moist and slippery and bowling on it was going to be hard.
Hayden had some luck, a caught behind appeal going his way, as he scored 81 from 46 balls with typical brute force and also some atypical feathery touch.
For a while, Raina led his senior partner, feasting on a Mumbai attack that had no bite. The most economical spell was captain Harbhajan Singh's 2-0-14-0.
Even the miserly Shaun Pollock was clobbered around going for 3-0-32-0, including a reverse sweep from Hayden that went for four.
Raina and Hayden both brought up their fifties in 33 balls. The Indian eventually fell attempting a big hit and finding long-on.
Hayden carried on the good work with his captain MS Dhoni, who made 30 in 16 balls to tip Chennai over the 200-run mark.
Hayden got out attempting an impossible single as a throw from cover by Harbhajan caught him short at the striker's end.
Chennai have now won two while Mumbai have lost two in the Indian Premier League so far.