IPL 2020: Complete squad analysis of Chennai Super Kings
The thirteen edition of IPL will kick-off on September 19 with defending champions Mumbai Indians taking on Chennai Super Kings in Abu Dhabi. While all the other franchises have been training rigorously, CSK's campaign has already been marred with COVID-19 and then the departure of stalwarts Suresh Raina and then Harbhajan Singh. Here's how their set-up appears as the tournament opener closes-in.
Players bought by CSK at the auction
CSK bought a couple of foreign stars at the IPL auction this time in the name Sam Curran and Josh Hazlewood. Among Indians, leg-spinner Piyush Chawla and left-arm orthodox Ravisrinivasan Sai Kishore were roped in. Players bought by CSK: Sam Curran (Rs. 5.5 crore), Piyush Chawla (Rs. 6.75 crore), Josh Hazlewood (Rs. 2 crore), Sai Kishore (Rs. 20 lakh).
Suresh Raina's absence would be felt
Despite having a solid batting line-up, Suresh Raina's absence could dent their plight this season. However, the management seems to be priming youngster Ruturaj Gaikwad for the role. Meanwhile, Murali Vijay is another useful option to replace Raina in the XI. As seen in the previous season, the likes of Shane Watson, Ambati Rayudu and Faf du Plessis could be rotated at the top.
Some quality all-rounders bolster the bench strength
Star all-rounder Dwayne Bravo, who recently took his 500th T20 wicket, will lead the particular segment for CSK. Like every season, he will be CSK's prized possession in both batting and bowling department. Furthermore, Ravindra Jadeja, Mitchell Santner and the newly-acquired Sam Curran will complement the Caribbean superstar. Kedar Jadhav's off-spin will also come handy on the slow tracks of UAE.
Plenty of options in the spin department
Yet again, it will be interesting to see how Dhoni utilizes his bowlers in the middle. It is a well-known fact that Deepak Chahar and Shardul Thalkur are his preferred strike-bowlers. Also, fast bowlers Josh Hazlewood and Lungi Ngidi enter the fray this time. Despite Harbhajan's exit, CSK have an illustrious pool of spinners (Jadeja, Piyush, Santner, Imran Tahir, and Karn Sharma).
Here's a look at the complete CSK squad
Here's a look at the complete CSK squad: Narayan Jagadeesan, Ruturaj Gaikwad, KM Asif , Ravindra Jadeja, M Vijay, MS Dhoni (C), Josh Hazlewood, Kedar Jadhav, Karn Sharma, Piyush Chawla, Ambati Rayudu, Imran Tahir, Deepak Chahar, Faf du Plessis, Shardul Thakur, Mitchell Santner, Dwayne Bravo, Lungi Ngidi, Sam Curran, Monu Kumar, Shane Watson, Sai Kishore.
CSK still favorites despite loopholes
Although the CSK batting line-up looks a bit infirm on paper in the absence of Raina, they still have a number of options to fill in. Nevertheless, the Yellow Army will be led by an astute skipper MS Dhoni, who knows his moves well. Probable XI for the first match: Watson, Rayudu, Du Plessis, Jadhav, Dhoni (WK/C), Bravo, Jadeja, Tahir, Thakur, Chahar, Karn.