Chennai Super Kings booked its Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 play-offs berth in style on Thursday night. Not only did the CSK condemn the Sunrisers Hyderabad to a six-wicket defeat but the match also saw Dhoni hit the winning runs - a six.
However, the former champions will be looking to keep their momentum going as they eye a top-two finish when they take on a struggling Rajasthan Royals on Saturday.
Led by MS Dhoni, CSK became the first team to qualify for the play-offs. This is in stark contrast to their last year's performance when they had become the first team to be knocked out of the tournament.
Currently leading the IPL points table with 18 points from 11 games, they are followed by Delhi Capitals (16 points), Royal Challengers Bangalore (14) and Kolkata Knight Riders (10).
With eight points from 11 games, RR are placed second from the bottom in the eight-team table. A loss will narrow their chances of making it to the knockout stages.
The equation is simple for RR -- win the remaining three games handsomely and stay in contention for the fourth play-off spot.
But it would be easier said than done as in CSK, a formidable opponent awaits them first up against whom they lost by 38 runs in the first leg of the tournament in Chennai.
With four consecutive wins under their belt, CSK are on a roll. They beat defending champions Mumbai Indians by 20 runs, followed by victories over Royal Challengers Bangalore (by 6 wickets), Kolkata Knight Riders (by 2 wickets) and SRH.
And the Doni-led side would be keen to stay in good form as the tournament approaches its business end.
On the other hand, RR have hit a rough patch as they suffered a hat-trick of defeats -- against DC by 33 runs and against bottom-placed SRH and RCB by 7 wickets respectively.
It's now or never for the Sanju Samson-led side as it fights to arrest the slide and stay afloat.
Rajasthan Royals: Sanju Samson (captain), Liam Livingstone, Evin Lewis, David Miller, Chris Morris, Oshane Thomas, Mustafizur Rahaman, Tabraiz Shamsi, Glenn Phillips, Chetan Sakariya, Riyan Parag, Rahul Tewatia, Akash Singh, Anuj Rawat, KC Cariappa, Yashashvi Jaiswal, Shivam Dube, Shreyas Gopal, Kartik Tyagi, Mayank Markande, Jaydev Unadkat, Kuldip Yadav, Mahipal Lomror.
Chennai Super Kings: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain), Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, KM Asif, Deepak Chahar, Dwayne Bravo, Faf du Plessis, Imran Tahir, N Jagadeesan, Karn Sharma, Lungi Ngidi, Mitchell Santner, Ravindra Jadeja, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shardul Thakur, Sam Curran, R Sai Kishore, Moeen Ali, K Gowtham, Cheteshwar Pujara, Harishankar Reddy, Bhagath Varma, C Hari Nishaanth.
Match starts at 7:30pm.