Here is a look at the Chennai Super Kings team before the start of the IPL 2020 in UAE. Chennai Super Kings is without a doubt the most consistent team in the IPL history under the leadership of Captain Cool, Mahindra Singh Dhoni.
A topsy-turvy Start
Chennai Super Kings has a topsy-turvy ride since their arrival in UAE. At least 10 member of the CSK team including the pacer Deepak Chahar tested positive for COVID-19 and adding salt to their injury Their top batsman in the middle order, Suresh Raina has gone back home for ‘personal reasons’ and he will probably miss the entire season. Harbhajan Singh also opted to miss this year’s edition of IPL. Though CSK has faced many blows even before the start of the T20 tournament, they are still a very strong team to be a serious contender of winning the title.
An impressive Record
Chennai Super Kings has won three titles in the eight finals they have played. They have an impressive 100% qualification record in the play-offs as well. They missed the 4th IPL title last year when they lost to Mumbai Indians in the final by the narrowest of the margins i.e. by 1 run. They have got a leader who is praised all over the world i.e. Mahindra Singh Dhoni. Under his captaincy, CSK has come up from impossible situations several times. Along with the captain cool, CSK has also got the services of Stephen Fleming as head coach. Fleming has played a very vital role in making a formidable team.
Experience over Youth
CSK has always relied on the experience in place of the young blood contrary to the other team all around the globe as most of the team think that T20 is a game for the young players. There is a history of veterans in CSK that have played vital role in winning them titles and putting up an impressive show. Veterans like Muralitharan, Mathew Hayden and Ntini played for the Chennai franchise. This time they have got the players like Imran Tahir and Shane Watson who have performed brilliantly in the last two editions.
In the 2020 editions Chennai Super Kings has got the services of Faf Du Plessis and Watson at the top order. In the middle order they have already lost the services of Raina which is a worrying sign for the Yellow team. The absence of Raina has put extra burden on Kedar Jadhav and Ambati Rayudu; Kedar Jadhav scored 602 runs with an imposing average of 43 in the 2018 edition of IPL which CSK won. They have also got Mahi in their ranks and he along with Dwayne Bravo make the lower middle order very strong. Ravindra Jadeja and Sam Curran can also hit some strong blows at bottom.
The bowling department of CSK has been struck by some blows like absence of Harbhajan and Chahar being tested positive for COVID-19. Deepak Chahr may miss the initial matches for CSK. They have got Josh Hazzlewood who has got staggering accuracy with the new ball. They have also got the services of Dwayne Bravo who can come in handy with his impressive accuracy. He has been impressive in the death overs over the years. The spin department of CSK is also very strong with the inclusion of Imran Tahir, Mitchell Santner, Piyush Chawla and Ravindra Jadeja. Veteran spinner Harbhajan Singh was also part of the squad but he has chosen to miss this year’s edition. They have also got a young spinner R Sai Kishore who was the leading wicket-taker in the 2019/20 edition of Syed Mushtaq Ali trophy.
MS Dhoni is the key player for Chennai Super Kings and he is been part of the team since the inaugural edition of IPL in 2008. During these 12 years Dhoni has groomed players like Raina, Jadeja and Chahar. Dhoni has scored 871 runs in the last two editions at a staggering average of 79.18. Dhoni has not played any competitive cricket since the semi-final exit of India from the hands of New Zealand in World Cup 2019.
Sam Curran of England has been in a great touch in recent times. He has got the ability to move the ball in both ways plus he can execute lethal Yorkers as well. He can be a handy choice as a bowler at any stage of the game. He is also a good choice to bat at the top order as he has got the capability to score some quick runs.
The street-smart cricket from the Caribbean has recently won the CPL 2020 for Trinbago Knight Riders. He has got an immense experience of playing T20 leagues all over the world. He can come in handy in all the departments i.e. bowling, batting and fielding. He has bowl impressive seam bowling the death overs and can also hit some towering sixes with the bat in his hand. Who can forget his impressive 70 runs not out inning against Kings XI Punjab at Centurion in the 2009 edition. He came as an opener with Jayasuriya and hot 3 towering sixes. In the 2020 edition, Bravo will be one of the key players.
Chennai Super Kings Squad:
MS Dhoni (captain), Dwayne Bravo, Faf du Plessis, Shane Watson, Ambati Rayudu, Sam Curran, Lungi Ngidi, K Asif, Deepak Chahar, Imran Tahir Harbhajan Singh (Opted to miss this edition), Suresh Raina (Left for India due to personal reasons), Josh Hazlewood, Ravindra Jadeja, Jagadeesan Narayan, Karn Sharma, Kedar Jadhav, Mitchell Santner, Monu Singh, Murali Vijay, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shardul Thakur, Piyush Chawla, R Sai Kishore.
Chennai Super Kings Schedule
Though Chennai Super Kings has many hiccups since they have landed in UAE. Many of their key players will be missing this year’s IPL edition but they still have the capacity to qualify for the play-offs. From the individual brilliance of any player and the captaincy of Mahindra Singh Dhoni they can still lift the cup.