Chennai: Brendon McCullum struck a quickfire fifty before Ravindra Jadeja produced a brilliant spell of 4-11 as Chennai Super avenged its defeat over Rajasthan Royals with a 12-run win to virtually secure its place in the play-offs of the Indian Premier League here on Sunday.
With this win, Chennai jumped to the top of the table with 16 points from 12 matches, while Rajasthan will continue to occupy the third spot with 14 points from 13 games.
Chennai thus avenged their eight-wicket loss to Rajasthan in Ahmedabad last month.
Opting to bat, McCullum smashed a quickfire 81 before Chris Morris (3/19) produced a brilliant display with the ball for Rajasthan Royals to restrict Chennai to a modest 157 for five.
But Chennai rode on Jadeja's fine spin bowling performance and some brilliant ground fielding to restrict Rajasthan to 145 for nine.
Chasing the modest target, Rajasthan's innings just fell apart after a steady start.
Ajinkya Rahane (23) and Shane Watson (28) shared 37 runs for the opening wicket before the visitors lost the plot.
Rahane top-edged a Mohit Sharma (3/25) short delivery to a running Dwayne Bravo at deep square-leg in the sixth over before an over later skipper Steven Smith was bowled by Jadeja.
The turning point in the match came in the form of Watson's dismissal off Jadedja. Bravo pulled off a brilliant one-handed catch at long-off that was destined to go over the ropes to sent the home crowd into a frenzy at MA Chidambaram stadium.
Jadeja picked up his third wicket when he dismissed Karun Nair (10), who looped one straight to Ravichandran Ashwin at short fine-leg in the 12th over.
Jadeja was once again at the thick of things when Deepak Hooda hit a full toss straight to Suresh Raina at long-on in the first delivery off the 15th over.
Samson (26 off 17), James Faulkner (16 off 13) and Chris Morris (16 not out off 10) played good hands but it was not enough to take Rajasthan home as Bravo (2/43) scalped two wickets towards the end to ensure Chennai's win on their last home match.