New Delhi:Lowly Royal Challengers Bangalore humbled fancied Chennai Super Kings by two wickets in an Indian Premier League thriller to inject some life in their bid for a semifinal berth here on Thursday.
Following Mahendra Singh Dhoni's decision to bat first, Chennai Super Kings posted a modest 129, built largely around Matthew Hayden's breezy 38-ball 60 but the Bangalore side overwhelmed the target with two balls to spare.
For the winners, New Zealander Ross Taylor cracked a sedate 50-ball 46 and added 56 runs with Virat Kohli (38 off 35) to fashion their second consecutive victory.
With five runs needed from the last over, Taylor fell to Jacob Oram but R Vinay Kumar kept his cool and hit a four to seal the issue.
Earlier, Chennai opener Hayden, who adorned his innings with five fours and three sixes, did not find enough support from his colleagues as only two other batsmen - Suresh Raina (13) and skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni (18) - managed double digit scores.
Chennai lost their six wickets for only 28 runs with Oram (7), S Badrinath (2) and Albie Morkel (7) falling cheaply.
Hayden looked at his best and cracked three boundaries in the second over off medium pacer R Vinay Kumar and then smote Praveen Kumar into the stands in the next over.
Anil Kumble brought South African Jacques Kallis into the attack in fourth over and the all-rounder justified his skipper's decision by inflicting the first blow to Chennai, sending back opener M Vijay (5) cheaply.
Kallis struck again in the sixth over when Raina failed to negotiate a rising delivery and Van der Merwe dived forward to pouch a well-judge catch.
Dhoni then paired up with Hayden, who was looking solid on the other end, to stitch a 45-run partnership. Spinner Merwe broke the pair just when it was looking dangerous by brilliantly taking a reflex catch to remove Dhoni (18 off 20).
Kumble got the big breakthrough when Hayden failed to gauge a floater and Vinay pouched a good catch near the ropes. Once Hayden returned, none of the Chennai batsmen could do much as the side settled for a below-par total.
Chasing a modest 130, Bangalore got off to a disastrous start as Chennai's new-ball pair of Albie Morkel and Sudeep Tyagi struck early in the innings.
Opener Kallis (0) departed after Morkel's wicket-bound delivery found his leg in the first over, while in the next over Rahul Dravid's (8) ambitious cut found Badrinath in backward point area, leaving Bangalore struggling at 12 for two.
Things only compounded for Bangalore when another opener Robin Uthappa (6) also departed cheaply after being given lbw off Morkel in the fifth over.
Chennai bowlers maintained a strict line and length to stifle the Bangalore top-order but ran out of steam as the match progressed.
Taylor and Kohli held their nerve and paired up to pull Bangalore out of the pit before Oram caught Kohli off paceman Lakshmipathy Balaji.
Experienced Mark Boucher (5) also could not carry the flag and fell prey to Muttiah Muralitharan but Vinay Kumar did not make any mistake, guiding the side to a thrilling win.