Chennai Super Kings have been the stalwarts of the Indian Premier League since its inception, but the last two years weren’t as glossy for them. Match-fixing allegations saw the two-time champions miss the last two editions. Can CSK conquer the most coveted T20 title in all the land this year? Can they win a 3rd IPL title? We bring to you CSK’s team combination and expected playing 11 for IPL 2018.
CSK have undoubtedly been the most consistent team in the Indian Premier League. They’ve managed to qualify for the playoffs every single time. MS Dhoni undeniably has the Midas touch. The former Indian captain is an absolute genius when it comes to analysing the team’s strengths. He’s won every ICC tournament that exists and the IPL twice. His captaincy brilliance has bulldozed his teams to some monumental victories.
HOW MUCH DID CSK SPEND AT THE AUCTIONS
Chennai retained MS Dhoni, Suresh Raina and Ravindra Jadeja for 15 crores, 11 crores and 7 crores respectively. A total of 73,50,00,000 was spent by the premier league giants.
The Super Kings played the right-to-match card to retain Dwayne Bravo and Faf du Plessis. While the former was attained for Rs. 6,40,00,000, the latter cost them a mere 1.6 crores.
Their costliest purchase this season was Kedar Jadhav who was acquired for Rs. 7,80,00,000. The Indian international who played for Royal Challengers Bangalore will be a key figure in the CSK outfit this year.
Lungi Ngidi tore the Indian batting line-up apart in the 2nd test at Centurion earlier this year. Figures of 6/39 in the 2nd test earned him huge recognition across the cricketing fraternity. However, in the IPL auctions, when the name Ngidi popped up, only CSK bid and acquired him successfully at a paltry Rs. 50,00,000.
In the 39 T20s Ngidi’s played, he’s managed to pick 43 wickets. Not the greatest numbers by any means but his ability to hurl the white cherry at 150 kmph, makes him a stern inclusion.
“Remember the name, KM Asif”. Basil Thampi won the emerging player of the year in the previous IPL edition. Kerala surprisingly has been able to churn some quality fast bowlers over the years and one massive find this year has been KM Asif. The Malappuram born lad in the Syed Mushtaq Ali trophy played only a couple of games but his fiery pace captured a lot of attention. At the auctions, Asif was acquired for a mere Rs. 40,00,000. Asif might not be the bulkiest bloke around but he sure can trouble the batters with his nippy pace.
CSK exhausted majority of their cash in securing Indian players. Their costliest bid for a foreign player was 6.8 crores. Dwayne Bravo, the privileged one. To put it in another way CSK have an elite list of Indian players who are bound to make it to the playing eleven.
The likes of MS Dhoni, Ravindra Jadeja, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, Harbhajan Singh, Shardul Thakur, Karn Sharma and Murali Vijay are first team contenders. CSK might not even need the services of 4 foreign players to get underway. At least 3 foreign players have to be included in a team(4 being the maximum). Indeed, this formation is not a given and can be tweaked around with.
MS Dhoni, Suresh Raina, Kedar Jadhav, Ravindra Jadeja, Dwayne Bravo, Karn Sharma, Shane Watson, Shardul Thakur, Ambati Rayudu, Murali Vijay, Harbhajan Singh, Faf du Plessis, Mark Wood, Sam Billings, Imran Tahir, Deepak Chahar, Mitchell Santner, Lungi Ngidi, Asif KM, J Narayan, Kanishk Seth, Dhurv Shorey, Kshitiz Sharma, Monu Kumar, Chaitanya Bishnoi.
CSK’s TEAM COMBINATION FOR IPL 2018
CSK’s think tank will have their work out picking their starting eleven. For starters, CSK don’t have a settled opening pair. Murali Vijay hasn’t been a regular in the T20 format but his exploits in the past may hand him a minute advantage. Shane Watson is 36 now but his power hitting hasn’t taken a hit whatsoever.
Suresh Raina, Faf du Plessis, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni and Dwayne Bravo complete a 5-star middle order. Ambati Rayudu might not find a place in the eleven unless he’s given a chance to open. Rayudu at the top of the order wouldn’t be a bad ploy.
Ravindra Jadeja, Karn Sharma, Shardul Thakur and Mark Wood complete the starting eleven. Harbhajan Singh who’s won 3 titles with Mumbai Indians will fail to hit the first eleven.
EXPECTED PLAYING 11
Murali Vijay/Ambati Rayudu, Shane Watson, Suresh Raina, Faf du Plessis, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni, Dwayne Bravo, Ravindra Jadeja, Karn Sharma, Shardul Thakur, Mark Wood/Lungi Ngidi.
CSK have won 2 IPL titles, played the finals a record 6 times. As a matter of fact, they walk into the IPL as firm favourites always.