Royals Shane Watson
Royals opener Shane Watson in a punishing mood en route to his century against CSK in their IPL 2013 matchRon Gaunt/IPL/SPORTZPICS

Michael Hussey just continues to belie age and belief, despite retiring from all forms of international cricket.

Mr Cricket was just at his ridiculous best, scoring an outstanding 88, which overshadowed an equally brilliant century from Shane Watson, as the Chennai Super Kings stormed to a five-wicket victory over the Rajasthan Royals.

Watson was unstoppable for the Royals in the first innings, making 101 - the first ton of IPL 2013 - to take the away side to a big score of 185 for four.

CSK, led by Hussey, and well supported by Suresh Raina, just paced the chase brilliantly, albeit with a couple of minor hiccups towards the end, reaching the target with one ball to spare.

CSK have now won five of their seven matches to jump to the top of the points table with ten points, while the Royals suffered their third defeat in seven, with two of their losses coming in the last two matches.

Hussey was again the key man at the top for CSK, as his fellow opener Murali Vijay was scuttled out for three by Ajit Chandila in the third over.

Hussey and Suresh Raina got together and produced the perfect partnership of 90 runs from just over ten overs, as CSK kept pace with the run rate.

Raina, who has had a poor tournament so far by his usually high standards, hit four fours and a couple of maximums in his 35-ball innings of 51, before being trapped lbw by James Faulkner.

However, all that wicket did was bring the dangerous MS Dhoni to the crease and the CSK skipper along with the irrepressible Hussey went along overhauling the target. The equation was 74 from 44 balls when Dhoni walked up to the crease, with CSK on 112 for two, and 20 balls later, thanks to some sensible, yet extremely effective, batting from the two experienced men, it was cut down to 32 from 24.

With Hussey (88, 51b, 13x4, 1x6) and Dhoni at the crease, it looked like a simple enough equation, but a needless run out of the Australian saw the Royals claw themselves right back into the game.

Ravindra Jadeja was brilliantly yorked by James Faulkner just two balls after Hussey's wicket as CSK now stared at a target of 29 runs from 18 balls, but with just six, instead of the eight, wickets in hand.

Twelve runs were taken off the Kevon Cooper over, with Dhoni hitting a boundary, which meant CSK needed 17 from the last two.

Faulkner (three for 20) bowled an outstanding penultimate over, conceding just six runs, while also picking up the precious wicket of Dhoni (21, 16b, 1x4).

It was now eleven needed from the last over from Watson, and Dwayne Bravo batted brilliantly to take CSK to yet another last-gasp win.

The first innings was all about the brilliance of Watson, as the Australian took charge right from the off to send the CSK bowlers reeling.

It was an outstanding start from the Royals as the opening pair of Watson and Ajinkya Rahane posted 71 from a little over seven overs, with Rahane scoring just 16 of those runs, which emphasised just how dominant Watson was.

After just watching Watson take off at the other end, Rahane (16, 15b, 1x4) played on to R Ashwin. The Dishant Yagnik experiment that worked so well last time, did not quite go according to plan the second time of asking, as the wicketkeeper-batsman top-edged while attempting a sweep with Ashwin completing the catch of his own bowling.

It did not matter too much for Watson, at the other end, as the Australian continued to tonk the bowlers with utter disdain. Rahul Dravid added 29 runs with the Australian, while just scoring six himself, before the Aussie tyro got together with Stuart Binny to propel his side towards the 200-run mark.

Watson and Binny allied for 46 runs from just 4.1 overs, before the former was dismissed after a brilliant century.

Just a ball after reaching the magical three-figure mark, Watson (101, 61b, 6x4, 6x6), only managed to find Hussey at extra cover off Bravo.

The score was 159 for three at that point with 15 balls remaining, and Binny (36, 22b, 3x4, 1x6) and Brad Hodge ensured they went past the 180-mark, eventually finishing up on 185. 

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