Chennai Super Kings [ Images ] walloped Mumbai Indians [ Images ] by 22 runs in the final, at the DY Patil stadium in Nerul, on Sunday to become champions of the third edition of the Indian Premier League [ Images ].
The M S Dhoni-led side, the only team to have qualified for the last four stage in all the three editions, joined Rajasthan Royals [ Images ] and Deccan Chargers [ Images ] as winners of the lucrative annual event.
Chasing a formidable target, the home team could only muster 146 for nine. Mumbai Indians were never dismissed (all out) in a tournament they dominated till the very end.
It was the Super Kings' fourth win over Mumbai Indians in seven matches and their ninth in 16 in this campaign, just enough to ensure they achieved what they had failed to in the inaugural edition.
It was also Chennai's fourth win in their last five matches and capped a tremendous comeback for a side that looked out of semi-final contention at one stage in the tournament.
As regards Mumbai Indians, it was just their fifth loss in 16 matches this season but one that came at the worst possible time.
Their captain, Sachin Tendulkar [ Images ], braved an injury to play and scored a resolute 48 but, in the end, it wasn't enough.
Mumbai got off to a worst possible start when Shikar Dhawan (0) was caught behind the wicket in the second over by Doug Bollinger.
The fact that MI didn't manage a single run in the first seven balls of their innings ensured the early dismissal.
R Ashwin's first over was a maiden - making him only the third bowler after Makhaya Ntini [ Images ] and Ryan Harris to have achieved the feat in an IPL final - and Bollinger gave CSK the breakthrough with his fourth ball.
The wicket further reduced the scoring rate till both Tendulkar and Abhishek Nayar [ Images ] (27) helped themselves to a boundary each in Ashwin's third over that cost CSK 10 runs.
The Master Blaster continued the revival with successive boundaries off Albie Morkel [ Images ].
And MI scampered to 43 for one after nine overs (CSK were 49 for one), when the first strategic time-out was taken.
However, Nayar hit successive sixes off Shadab Jakati [ Images ], the first over long-on and the second one much more straighter to ease the pressure considerably.
But after missing so many run-out opportunities, MS Dhoni [ Images ] finally hit the stumps to run-out Nayar at a crucial juncture.
Nayar's was almost a run-a-ball innings and he was involved in a 66-run second wicket partnership with his captain, a partnership that took 58 balls but was broken when it had just started to cut loose.
Two wickets in an over put the pressure back on the hosts.
Ambati Rayudu (21) smashed Raina over midwicket for a maximum and followed it up with a boundary.
But CSK had alraedy tasted blood and were in no mood to let go the opportunity.
And their biggest breakthrough came in Jakati's third over - the 15th of the innings - when Tendulkar chipped straight to Vijay at long-off.
The Master Blaster's 45-ball knock was enough to ensure he finished the tournament's top scorer - with 618 runs in 15 matches - and his seven boundaries ensured he finished the tournament as the batsmean with the most fours (86).
However, it wasn't enough to carry his team through.
Three balls later, a supern catch at deep midwicket by Raina ensured the dismissal of Saurabh Tiwary [ Images ] (0) and MI witnessed themselves reduced to 101 for five after the 15th over.
Muralitharan made matters worse for Mumbai by having JP Duminy [ Images ] (6) caught by Jakati at deep midwicket to leave MI needing a whopping 55 runs off their final three overs.
However, Kieron Pollard ensured more drama by smashing Bollinger for 22 runs in the 18th over, including two boundaries and two maximums.
But Morkel bowled an excellent penultimate over - that resulted in the wickets of Rayudu and Pollard - to make a final over a mere formality.
Earlier, Raina (57 not out) and Dhoni (22) ensured Chennai Super Kings a formidable total.
The visitors, after a tepid start, eventually managed to post 168 for five in their stipulated 20 overs - the highest team total in an IPL final.
Having scored just 58 runs off their first 10 overs, the team from Chennai accumulated a whopping 100 runs from their last 10 to complete - 60 off the last five - what was without doubt a remarkable comeback.
The duo came into the crease with Chennai in a spot of bother after losing a few quick wickets and put on an impressive partnership of 72 runs (off just 35 balls) for the fourth wicket in a stand that invariably altered the course of the match.
Raina, after a couple of reprieves early on in his innings courtesy some patchy work by the MI fielders, reached what was his ninth IPL fifty, his fourth in this edition - and coming off just 24 balls, the fastest fifty in an IPL final.
His 35-ball knock was inclusive off three hits to the fence and three huge ones over it.
The innings also made Raina the only batsman to have scored in excess of 400 runs in all the three editions - the left-hander is now palpably the highest scorer in the tournament with 1375 runs, 520 having come in 16 matches in this edition.
Dhoni's 15-ball knock wasn't huge in terms of numbers but was important because of the impact it had on the game.
And the duo negated the advantage that MI had having reduced CSK to 67 for three in the 12th over.
Harbhajan opened the attack for MI and the batting side did precious little for the first 15 balls besides living a tad dangerously - Matthew Hayden, in particular, surviving a series of appeals from Bhajji.
However, off the 16th ball, the veterean Aussie eventually managed to break the shackles hitting Harbhajan over the long-on fence for a maximum.
The Tamil Nadu batsman then hit past the short extra cover fielder for another boundary in the next over by Lasith Malinga [ Images ].
Four balls later, Hayden smashed the ball through the point and cover fielder for a boundary.
Dilhara Fernando was introduced into the attack in the sixth over and Vijay greeted him by smashing the ball over for his second maximum.
However, despite a couple of stray hits both the batsmen largely struggled on a wicket that wasn't conducive for strokeplay.
And as the field restrictions eased, Chennai had made 40 without loss, much less than their tournament average in the period (48).
On a positive note though, it was CSK's best opening wicket stand against MI.
However, it didn't last long as Fernando struck in his second over, having Vijay caught by Saurabh Tiwary at long-on to give the hosts their maiden breakthrough.
And Hayden didn't last long either, a short delivery from Kieron Pollard made him play his shot early, get a top edge and Ambati Rayudu made no mistake whatosever.
The Australian veteran never looked comfortable during his 31-ball knock and his departure had Chennai struggling at 49 for two after nine overs (the first strategic timeout).
The visitors reached the 50-run mark in the 10th over - the slowest to reach the mark in an IPL final.
S Badrinath (14) played a couple of intelligent shots, getting boundaries as reward, before skying a Fernando delievry straight to Malinga at final leg.
In came Dhoni, and the Chennai captain announced his arrival with a one-handed six over deep midwicket off Pollard. Five balls later, the ball was punched past point for a boundary.
Dhoni had made his intentions clear - he wouldn't take it lying down.
And Raina joined the party with a boundary and six off successive Zaheer deliveries - the over, the 15th of the innings, cost MI a whopping 17 runs.
To make matters worse, lack of communication between Fernando and Abhishek Nayar ensured the ball landed safely after Raina had mistimed his shot and edged it to third man.
Zaheer was himself guilty of dropping Raina in the next over (off Pollard) and the latter responded by smashing two sixes, resulting a further 19 runs in that over.
In trying to accelerate further, Dhoni hit a Zaheer delivery straight to Fernando at extra cover.
But Albie Morkel (15) carried on from where Dhoni had left, smashing a boundary off Zaheer before hitting Harbhajan over the long-on for a maximum.
A decent final over by Malinga reduced MI's misery to an extent. But the damage had been done.
Earlier, Dhoni won the toss and predictably elected to bat first.
"Batting has been our strength and we will look to put runs on the board," reasoned Dhoni.
His Mumbai counterpart, Sachin Tendulkar - having decided to play at the last minute, remained unperturbed though.
"It doesn't matter if we bat first or bowl," he said.
In the end it did matter.
Chennai Super Kings: MS Dhoni (captain), Matthew Hayden, Murali Vijay, Suresh Raina, S Badrinath, Albie Morkel, S Anirudha, R Ashwin, Doug Bollinger, Muttiah Muralitharan, Shadab Jakati.
Mumbai Indians: Sachin Tendulkar (captain), Shikhar Dhawan [ Images ], Saurabh Tiwary, Ambati Rayudu, Kieron Pollard, JP Duminy, Abhishek Nayar, Harbhajan Singh, Dilhara Fernando, Zaheer Khan, Lasith Malinga.