IPL 2019: Chennai Super Kings to eye another title win

IPL 2019: CSK’s squad looks balanced as it has retained the core of the team that made a stunning comeback after returning from a two-year ban last year.

IPL 2019: After making a heroic comeback in the last IPL season, this year too Chennai Super Kings (CSK) will look to drill their side to give another shot at the title. The side shares the honour of having lifted the IPL title thrice with Mumbai Indians. CSK has made to the final on seven occasions and reached the playoff nine times, and much of the credit for this achievement goes to talismatic MS Dhoni, who is known for making instinctive changes during the match as he calmly plans the demolition of other side.

CSK’s squad looks balanced as it has retained the core of the team that made a stunning comeback after returning from a two-year ban last year. With a number of experienced campaigners guiding them to the final last year, CSK busted the myth surrounding T20 cricket that the format is meant for youngsters alone.

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CSK has got enough meat and options to face the best of sides in IPL 2019 with their experienced squad that includes the likes of MS Dhoni, Faf du Plessis, Shane Watson, Ambati Rayudu combined with the warm-blooded young turks of the team – Lungi Ngidi, Dhruv Shorey, Karn Sharma, Mitchell Santner, among other players.

Every time there are questions over his performance and his continuance in the team in his advancing years, Dhoni surprises critics with his performances. He is sharp on the field – whether he dons wicketkeeping or batting gloves – and has earned the reputation of being a match-winner.

The ‘Yellow Army’ has good batting options. In Faf du Plessis, CSK has one of the most consistent batsmen in the world cricket who can mould to the team’s needs. Shane Watson, a powerful striker of the ball, is capable of swinging matches with both bat and ball in his team’s favour.

Ambati Rayudu has got the capability to keep the scoreboard ticking and can hit boundaries every time the bowler errs. His terrific performance in IPL 2018 – 602 runs in 16 matches at an average of 43 – propelled CSK’s claims on IPL title. In the middle order, Suresh Raina can whip up blitzkrieg knocks in demanding situations.

If CSK’s batting line up can put up a good score and take an early edge in the game, its bowling ammunition has got all that it needs to restrict the other team from scoring high. With his ability to bowl yorkers or alter pace, Dwayne Bravo has the kind of death-bowling talent every team management wishes for in T20 format. South African versatile right-arm fast bowler Lungi Ngidi is quick, straight and bowls well in the initial as well as death overs. Mohit Sharma can chip in too.

The side has a good enough spin attack too. With an experienced Harbhajan Singh, the Stephen Fleming-coached CSK will bet on Kiwi Mitchell Santner, who is also an all-rounder, and leg spinners Karn Sharma and Imran Tahir to turn the game around.

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