Our Titans tuned out all the outside noise around past performances and took to the field with renewed determination against Chennai Super Kings. And it showed on the field tonight as we put in a dominant show to beat the defending champions by 35 runs at the Home of Gujarat Titans.

Having won the toss – only his second in TATA IPL 2024 – Ruturaj Gaikwad put us in to bat on what looked like a sticky wicket that would get better for batting over time. But all the challenges of the conditions soon evaporated as Shubman Gill and Sai Sudharsan – opening the innings in place of an injured Wriddhiman Saha – tore into the CSK bowlers at will.

While Captain Gill looked like a man on a mission, entertaining the #TitansFAM with his wide range of shots, Sai Su was at his elegant best, banking on his impeccable timing to take the CSK bowling apart. 

Taking on the Powerplay with confidence, our duo scored 58 when the field restrictions were on and then freed their arms to continue going for the big ones. Be it the boundary and then maximum to open the show against Mitchell Santner or the two back-to-back boundaries off Tushar Deshpande, or even tonking Simarjeet Singh over long-on for half-a-dozen, Captain Gill spared none and took the opponents to task as the match progressed.

Soon our skipper brought up his fifty with another maximum, this time a top edge that flew over fine leg. But the carnage never stopped. CSK were left looking for options as even the part-timer rolled their arms over. Even that didn’t bring any respite, though, as Captain Gill went after Daryl Mitchell, smashing him for three sixes. The Prince was back in his Kingdom as he became the first player to score 1000 T20 runs at the venue before bringing up his fourth TATA IPL century. 

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Meanwhile, at the other end, Sai Su was in a great mood, gracefully going about his business. For the man from Tamil Nadu, his maiden TATA IPL ton was all about timing and picking gaps in the field. What started with our Titan going down on one knee to loft Shardul Thakur over wide long-off for a beautiful maximum also saw an array of textbook cricketing shots that could make for a perfect tutorial for any budding cricketer. 

The innings also saw Sai Su become the fastest Indian to 1000 runs in the TATA IPL. The duo stitched together 210 for the opening wicket, equalling the record set by KL Rahul & Quinton de Kock two years ago.

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Our bowling and fielding too matched up to the mayhem that Sai Su and Captain Gill had left behind. David Miller was the first to come into action. The South African showed great awareness to send Rachin Ravindra packing in the first over. Ajinkya Rahane and Ravindra looked to steal a single off the final delivery of the opening over. But it was not to be as Agent Miller swooped in on the ball from backward point and hit the stumps with an underarm throw to catch Ravindra short of his crease. 

Rahane too didn’t last long as he was picked up by Sandeep Warrier in the next over. And when the CSK skipper Ruturaj Gaikwad was caught for nought, the visitors looked in deep trouble at 10/3. When Daryl Mitchell and Moeen Ali fought hard with a 100-run stand, we had to stay on top of our game to see the game through. And our Titans did just that by sending both the set batters back just when they were looking to accelerate. Mohit bhai was back to his best, picking up 3 wickets and ending the game as our highest wicket-taker in the match. 

Later, though the CSK middle-order swung hard, it was too little too late as we registered a victory in front of our #TitansFAM that turned out in numbers.