Durban:Subramaniam Badrinath struck an unbeaten 52 to save the batting blushes before a disciplined effort by the bowlers as Chennai Super Kings spank Central Districts by 57 runs in a Champions League Twenty20 match here on Saturday night.
Badrinath's counterattacking 52 from 42 balls was mainly responsible for CSK reaching 151 for four after they were down five for two in the second over and 48 for three at halfway mark after electing to bat.
He got ample support from Srikkanth Anirudha (42) and the duo shared 73 runs from 49 balls for the fourth wicket to take CSK score past 150 on a spongy Kingsmead pitch which saw odd balls kicking up to trouble the batsmen.
Later CSK bowlers complemented the good work done by their batsmen by skittling out Central Districts for 94 in 18.1 overs to start their campaign on a winning note.
Chasing 152 for a win, the New Zealand champion side initially looked like they would stand up for a challenge but after they lost their first wicket in the fourth over they were never in the chase.
Pacer Laxmipathy Balaji was the most successful CSK bowler with three for 20 from his four overs while Muttiah Muralitharan, Ravichandran Ashwin and Doug Bollinger claiming a wicket apiece.
Opener Peter Ingram was the first Central Districts batsman to go in the fourth over for six as he top-edged an Albie Morkel delivery to Suresh Raina at cover at team score of 12 for one. He was earlier dropped while on one in the second ball of their innings by Ravichandran Ashwin.
Next over, George Worker fell to Balaji for four and at team score of 22 for two with Muralitharan taking an easy catch at mid-on.
CSK captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni introduced off-spinner Ashwin in the sixth over and got the result immediately in the form of Jamie How's wicket.
The captain of the New Zealand champion side, who was dropped by Raina when on five, misread a delivery which straightened up before cleaning up his off-stump. Central Districts were reeling at 35 for three at that stage.
Sri Lankan spin wizard Muralitharan then claimed two wickets in the space of three balls to leave Central Districts run chase in tatters as they were reduced to 37 for five in the eighth over.
Mathew Sinclair (10), who hit Ashwin for a six in his first delivery, followed suit his captain soon as he fell to a superb catch by Matthew Hayden at slip while attempting a reverse sweep off a Muralitharan delivery.
Muralitharan, who recently retired from Test cricket, scalped his second wicket two balls later with Noema-Barnettas (0) edging a sharp turning delivery for Dhoni to take a fine catch behind the stumps.