Chennai Super Kings have bounced back in IPL 2021 after disappointing last season where they finished 7th and couldn’t qualify for the playoffs for the first time in IPL history.
The three-time IPL champions and the second-most successful franchise after Mumbai Indians played incredibly well in the first half of the tournament, winning five matches out of seven and have continued the same momentum, let alone better it, by registering a hat-trick of victories in the tournament’s second phase.
Chennai Super Kings Has Some Weakness Despite Being Table Toppers: Brian Lara
With wins over Mumbai Indians, Royal Challengers Bangalore, and Kolkata Knight Riders on Sunday, Chennai Super Kings has secured a Playoff berth in IPL 2021 UAE leg.
Currently, at the top of the points table with 16 points, Chennai Super Kings has ticked all boxes, but former West Indies captain Brian Lara feels MS Dhoni’s team is dealing with a couple of issues that opposition teams could target. Brian Lara didn’t dwell much into the details of the shortcomings, but he did offer a hint.
“I think teams have got to aim at their weaknesses, and they have got some. I’m not going to stand on air and call their names out but they do have a couple of weak areas you can try to work on as an opposition. We saw them bat in the first game since the restart against Mumbai Indians. I think MI let them get off the hook after having them four down,” Lara said on Star Sports Pre-Match Show.
Ruturaj Gaikwad scored 88 to bail Chennai Super Kings out of trouble against MI while batting first. The MS Dhoni-led outfit posted 156/6 in the allotted twenty overs after being 24 for four inside the powerplay. Chennai Super Kings was 24/4 at one stage, and Ambati Rayudu was retired hard. Still, the momentum shifted after opener Ruturaj Gaikwad scored an unbeaten 88 off 58 balls, including 9 fours and 4 sixes.
Ravindra Jadeja and Dwayne Bravo scored 26 and 23 before being dismissed, while Faf du Plessis, Moeen Ali, Suresh Raina, and MS Dhoni couldn’t contribute even 5 runs each. However, it is hard to point out CSK’s ‘weakness’ given the rollicking form they have been in, as they did well in both batting and bowling departments after recovering from the starting hiccup against Mumbai Indians.
CSK and DC have the same points-16 after winning 8 out of 10 games, but CSK has a superior run rate of +1.069.
Ruturaj Gaikwad, Ravindra Jadeja, Faf du Plessis, Deepak Chahar, And Dwayne Bravo Has Been Consistent For CSK
Ruturaj Gaikwad, Ravindra Jadeja, and Faf du Plessis have regularly chipped in with the bat, while Deepak Chahar and Dwayne Bravo have shone with the ball. While Faf du Plessis has scored 394 runs, Ruturaj Gaikwad had scored 362 runs so far. Ravindra Jadeja has scored 179 runs apart from taking 7 scalps. Deepak Chahar has taken 11 scalps while Dwayne Bravo picked 9 wickets.
Lastly, 40-year-old CSK skipper MS Dhoni, who has been at the forefront of CSK’s rise from the ashes story this year, has brought out his best game in captaincy and has proven to the world that while he may no longer be the destructive batsman he once was.
Besides, there is no one who can match the sharp captaincy acumen of the legendary former India skipper, who retired from international cricket as the only skipper to win all ICC tournaments.