Ranchi: The Indian Premier League arrived back in the country to the pitter-patter of rain and Chennai Super Kings thrashing a hapless Kolkata Knight Riders by 34 runs in a match curtailed to 17 overs here today.
Ravindra Jadeja produced a brilliant spell of spin bowling that saw him return figures of 4/12, after Brendon McCullum's sizzling half-century powered CSK to a daunting 148 for three. Mohit Sharma, too, bowled well bagging 3/22 for CSK.
Chasing 149 in 17 overs, KKR lost the plot in the first 10 overs itself after being reduced to 65/5 because of poor shot selection by their batsmen.
Brendon McCullum of The Chennai Super Kings celebrates reaching his fifty during an IPL 7 match against Kolkata Knight Riders in Ranchi on Friday. PTI PHOTO/BCCI
The Knight Riders were in trouble from the outset with captain Gautam Gambhir (6) once again falling early.
A flurry of wickets followed as Jacques Kallis (4), Manish Pandey (1) and Shakib Al Hasan (0) all being dismissed in the space of an over.
At 38 for four Kolkata were all but out of the contest and things did not get much better as they were reduced to 91 for seven.
The only good thing to come out of the match for Kolkata was that Robin Uthappa (47) and Yusuf Pathan (41) were both amongst the runs.
Barring the two, none of the Knight Riders batsmen could even reach double figures.
McCullum pulverised the Knight Riders attack during a 40-ball 56, which contained five boundaries and two sixes.
In a contest that was reduced to 17 overs per side after rain delayed the start by an hour and 40 minutes, CSK also got valuable contribution from Suresh Raina (31).
Mahendra Singh Dhoni (22) and Ravindra Jadeja (17) remained not out.
Opting to bat, the two-time former champions raced away to 20 before Shakib Al Hasan, who opened the bowling for KKR, dismissed Dwayne Smith in the third bowl of the third over.
Going for a sweep, Smith, after kick-starting the innings with a boundary, missed the line to be trapped in front of the wicket for a 11-ball 16 at the JSCA International Stadium Complex.
McCullum, however, carried on and pulled R Vinay Kumar with utter contempt over the deep midwicket fence for a maximum. Another short one from Piyush Chawla was dispatched over the on side for a boundary by McCullum.
KKR bowlers, especially Vinay Kumar, was guilty of bowling too short and McCullum took full advantage pulling him for two more fours.
Suresh Raina, meanwhile, was content playing the second fiddle to the New Zealander, before he lofted Chawla straight down the pitch for a massive six. Using his wrists, the left-handed batsman found the gap between deep midwicket and long on for another four, before driving Shakib through the covers.
However, a waist-height full toss from Shakib did the trick for KKR with Raina holing out at long on in the 11th over, even as CSK inched towards 100. Raina faced 25 balls for his knock, which had four boundaries and a six.
Jacques Kallis was introduced in the 12th over and he was greeted with a six by McCullum, which also brought up his fifty.
But Andre Russell got the burly Kiwi batsman after he had him caught at deep point in his very first over, leaving skipper Dhoni to do the hitting in the innings' final over that fetched 15 runs.