Former Team India cricketer Aakash Chopra believes Chennai Super Kings might suffer in the upcoming season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) given that a couple of their players have had limited game time leading to this T20 extravaganza. The MS Dhoni-led side plays their first game against Delhi Capitals on April 10 (Saturday) at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
Incidentally, the Super Kings had a woeful outing in IPL 2020 in the UAE. They finished seventh in the group stages and failed to qualify for the playoffs for the first time in the history of the tournament. Chennai Super Kings finished the tournament with a couple of wins and the side will look to draw confidence from those victories and come all guns blazing in the new season.
But Aakash Chopra believes the three-time IPL champions might struggle considering that most of the CSK’s top performers haven’t had a hit in the middle. Incidentally, Suresh Raina, MS Dhoni, and Ambati Rayudu haven’t played any competitive cricket while Ravindra Jadeja has been out of action since the Test series against Australia owing to an injury.
“The likes of Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, and MS Dhoni haven’t played either international or competitive cricket. Ravindra Jadeja has been out of action for a while due to injury. So, four out of seven top performers don’t have a good form and competitive cricket game time,” Chopra told in a video on his Facebook page.
Chennai Super Kings’ fate will depend on Suresh Raina – Aakash Chopra
As per Aakash Chopra, Robin Uthappa, Ruturaj Gaikwad, and Faf du Plessis are pretty much certainties in CSK’s lineup. However, the cricketer-turned-commentator mentioned that CSK’s fate would depend a lot on Suresh Raina’s performance. The latter recently made his comeback to competitive cricket after a gap of around 20 months. Raina is also the leading run-scorer for the Super Kings since making his IPL debut back in 2008.
“I would suggest CSK promote Ravindra Jadeja up the order and let him bat a bit more. MS Dhoni shall play well too. But Raina is the critical cog. If he hits the ground running, CSK will be fine. And if not, CSK, I feel, will struggle this season and that’s not a good thing,” Chopra added.