They had the most expensive purchase of the IPL - Kevin Pietersen. Still they stood at the bottom of the table till he was there, and one thought that they would repeat their last year's performance. However, after a match that swung more times than Lindsay Lohan, RCB who were the second worst team from last year's IPL joined last year's worst team into the IPL finals - what a story! Anil Kumble's captaincy won them 7 out of 9 matches including the semi-final match against the Chennai Super Kings.
Hayden's rest unfortunately worked against CSK, as he got out cheaply, given how solidly he scored throughout the series. Dhoni's slow innings ensured that CSK never had the momentum to set a total that would really challenge the Challengers. It was still a big match though, and having runs on the board should have been pressure enough to cause some mistakes. However, it was not until Dravid and the tyro Pandey got out did CSK really feel that they were in with a chance. A couple of bold sixes followed and it was all over for the Super Kings. Pandey and Dravid gave the solidity and volume and Virat Kohli closed it out for his team.
I'm still in shock. Only consolation for me is that it's just the IPL. It's not India that has lost, and I like to think that I am more patriotic than regioniotic. IPL is almost over now - I need to start getting a life.