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15 Dec 2019, 16:16 IST
One of the most successful T20 teams around the world, Chennai Super Kings have been the epitome of consistency from the very beginning of the IPL. They have managed to qualify for the semifinals or playoffs every single season that they have played, reaching the final eight times in 10 attempts.
Not only with the results, CSK have also been highly consistent with their squad selection. They have unarguably the largest fan base among all IPL teams, and much of the credit for that goes to the loyalty that the franchise inspires by retaining the core of the team. Not just across seasons, but CSK also make the least average changes per match among all teams.
The end of the trade window saw them release just six players.
List of retained and released players by Chennai Super Kings
Retained: MS Dhoni, Suresh Raina, Faf du Plessis, Ambati Rayudu, M Vijay, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shane Watson, Dwayne Bravo, Kedar Jadhav, Lungi Ngidi, Ravindra Jadeja, Mitchell Santner, Monu Kumar, N Jagadeesan, Harbhajan Singh, Karn Sharma, Imran Tahir, Deepak Chahar, KM Asif
Released: Mohit Sharma, Sam Billings, David Willey, Scott Kuggeleijn, Dhruv Shorey and Chaitanya Bishnoi
Available slots for CSK: Five (two overseas)
Purse remaining: Rs. 14.60 cr
Here we analyse how CSK should approach the auctions, taking a look at possible strategies and identifying potential candidates they could look out for.
Area of concerns
Having released just six players, CSK hold an almost identical look to the 2019 squad. Not often do we see CSK going into the auctions looking for a lot of changes, and the trend is all set to continue in the upcoming auctions.
However, the under-performing middle order, which was clearly overdependent on skipper MS Dhoni in the 2019 season, is an area of concern. Unlike most teams, CSK lack a much-needed aggressor in their middle order who can hit sixes at will right from the word go.
The bowling department looks sorted and will only get stronger with Lungi Ngidi available for the next season. But the lack of alternatives if he gets injured might lead them to a position of trouble, just like the previous edition.
Probable targets for CSK in IPL 2020 auction
The 20-year sensation from Somerset, Tom Banton, has already caught the attention of the CSK management. The dynamic opener might give CSK the edge they are looking for at the top of the order.
Other probable batsmen they might go for include Ashton Turner and Shimron Hetmyer. Both of them looked good against spin in India.
Among pacers, the target will mostly be to bring in an overseas pacer. Chris Morris, who made his IPL debut for CSK, and Andrew Tye, whose variations with the ball might work wonders at Chepauk, will be on the radar of CSK.
With two overseas slots remaining, it is almost certain that they will be going for a pacer and a hard-hitting batsman.
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