Brendon McCullum sizzled with an enterprising half-century after the Indian Premier League arrived in the country to the pitter-patter of rain, powering Chennai Super Kings to a daunting 148 for three against Kolkata Knight Riders here today.
McCullum pulverised the Knight Riders attack during a 40-ball 56, which contained five boundaries and two sixes.
In a contest that was reduced to 17 overs per side after rain delayed the start by an hour and 40 minutes, CSK also got valuable contribution from Suresh Raina (31).
Mahendra Singh Dhoni (22) and Ravindra Jadeja (17) remained not out.
Opting to bat, the two-time former champions raced away to 20 before Shakib Al Hasan, who opened the bowling for KKR, dismissed Dwayne Smith in the third bowl of the third over.
Going for a sweep, Smith, after kick-starting the innings with a boundary, missed the line to be trapped in front of the wicket for a 11-ball 16 at the JSCA International Stadium Complex.
McCullum, however, carried on and pulled R Vinay Kumar with utter contempt over the deep midwicket fence for a maximum.
Another short one from Piyush Chawla was dispatched over the on side for a boundary by McCullum.
KKR bowlers, especially Vinay Kumar, was guilty of bowling too short and McCullum took full advantage pulling him for two more fours.
Suresh Raina, meanwhile, was content playing the second fiddle to the New Zealander, before he lofted Chawla straight down the pitch for a massive six. Using his wrists, the left-handed batsman found the gap between deep midwicket and long on for another four, before driving Shakib through the covers.
However, a waist-height full toss from Shakib did the trick for KKR with Raina holing out at long on in the 11th over, even as CSK inched towards 100. Rain faced 25 balls for his knock, which had four boundaries and a six.
Jacques Kallis was introduced in the 12th over and he was greeted with a six by McCullum, which also brought up his fifty.
But Andre Russell got the burly Kiwi batsman after he had him caught at deep point in his very first over, leaving skipper Dhoni to do the hitting in the innings' final over that fetched 15 runs.