After conceding a 7- wicket mauling by Rajasthan Royals, Chennai Super Kings all but out of the race for Playoffs. In the 10 matches this season, it was CSK’s 7th defeat that pushed them in bottom of the points table.
Though it’s not right to write off three-time champions as they still have an outside chance of making it to playoff, the tone in which captain MS Dhoni and CSK coach Stephen Flaming talked after the match it looks all but over for CSK this season.
After CSK returned to IPL in 2018 post two-year ban, they prioritize experience instead of youth in mega-auction that year. The likes of Ambati Rayudu, Suresh Raina, MS Dhoni, Shane Watson, Faf du Plessis, Harbhajan Singh, Dwayne Bravo made the core of squad. The experienced campaigners did yield the result when CSK won the title in 2018 and make it to finals in 2019; but not investing in youth cost them on the big ground of UAE.
This year their batting looked out of fire and their bowling, which was handmade for the slow tracks of Chennai, lacked pace to trouble batsman in UAE. Absence of Harbhajan Singh and Suresh Raina, their two strong pillars in batting and bowling, hurt them badly as none of their replacement – N Jagdeesan, Ruturaj Gaikwad and Piyush Chawla- performed well.
With the IPL 2020 all but over for CSK, the franchise owners will look to rebuildteam in next year’s mega auction. Here are a few key areas, CSK management will look to work on in next year auction–
With Dwayne Bravo aging, CSK would look to add the likes of Chris Woakes, Mitchell Marsh, Harshal Patel to strengthen both bowling and batting. Daniel Sam and Keemo Paul could be the other options for partnering Sam Curran in lower order.