The Indian Premier league is the flagship T20 league in the world and widely considered as the standard bearer of the T20 format in the world. Over the years, if there is one team that has been the standard bearer of the IPL, it has been Chennai Super Kings. From the Yellow Coloured Jerseys to the Whistle Podu anthems, fans have flocked the CSK matches and added flavour to what is one of the most complete teams in the IPL. Another big factor is the association that it has with one of Indian Cricket’s biggest icons ever. MS Dhoni. Known as Thala among the fans, MS Dhoni has brought his Midas touch to the franchise and made it one of the more successful franchises ever to have played in the league.
Chennai Super Kings’ run in the IPL began from the first season itself when the team that was lead by the then T20 world cup winning skipper MS Dhoni started the tournament off with a bang and ended up as runners up in the first edition losing to the eventual winners Rajasthan Royals in the finals. Since then, CSK have been one of the most consistent franchises in the IPL and in every season, they played before the 2020 season, they made the knockout stages. They have had their share of controversies too as they were banned for a couple of years for match fixing allegations however that has not deterred their fans from being some of the most passionate fans ever.
Post their return in the 2018 season, the CSK team showed no signs of being off their game as they won the 2018 season and were runners up in the 2019 season. The magic however started to veil off in the 2020 season as they finished at the very bottom of the pile. They figured that their squad was an increasingly ageing one and they needed to bring a few fresh faces in which they did in the auction and the results at least in the first part of IPL 2021 were evident.
The IPL 2021 CSK version is more of what we have been accustomed to seeing, the magic started coming back in 2021 and the CSK of old were back to being at their best. By the time, the IPL 2021 season had to be stopped due to the COVID pandemic’s second wave, we had seen them win 5 games out of the 7 games that were played. They are currently second on the table with a game in hand over the team that is on the top. They have a superior run rate of 1.263 and if they win their next game they will leapfrog the Delhi Capitals as being the top team in this season’s IPL.
CSK has seen a marked improvement in their performances overall in the tournament and the batting and bowling has been much better than it was in the previous tournament. They have seen the emergence of Moeen Ali as a brilliant all-round performer who has picked up 5 wickets and also scored 206 runs. The overall batting chart is currently lead by Faf Du Plessis for them who has scored 320 runs in 7 games. His opening partner Rituraj Gaekwad has come into the tournament too with 196 runs in 7 games.
Their seam bowling ahs been a revelation this year with Sam Curran picking up 9 wickets and Deepak Chahar picking up 8 wickets so far in the tournament. They are followed by Ravindra Jadeja who has bagged 6 wickets.
CSK had a great auction and while to their reputation they retained a few players, they did let go off a few players such as Kedar Jadhav, Piyush Chawla and Harbhajan Singh. The new additions included the likes of K Gowtham and Moeen Ali while there were some players like Shardul Thakur and Rituraj Gaekwad who had an increased role to play in the squad. The ipl 2021 csk team list is hereunder.
Suresh Raina, Faf du Plessis, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Ambati Rayudu, Ravindra Jadeja, Sam Curran, Dwayne Bravo, Karn Sharma, N. Jagadeesan (wk), Robin Uthappa, MS Dhoni (c/wk), Deepak Chahar, Shardul Thakur R. Sai Kishore, Mitchell Santner, KM Asif Imran Tahir, Lungi Ngidi, , M Harisankar Reddy, K. Bhagath Varma, Moeen Ali, K Gowtham, Cheteshwar Pujara Jason Behrendorff and C Hari Nishanth
The IPL 2021 is unique in many ways as it is going to be played in two phases. CSK has played 7 of its 14 games so far and while a schedule hasn’t been announced officially, the following ipl 2021 csk matches are left for them to be played.
Rajasthan Royals vs Chennai Super Kings
Sunrisers Hyderabad vs Chennai Super Kings
Chennai Super Kings vs Punjab Kings
Chennai Super Kings vs Kolkata Knight Riders
Chennai Super Kings vs Mumbai Indians
Delhi Capitals vs Chennai Super Kings
Royal Challengers Bangalore vs Chennai Super Kings
CSK are the second most successful franchise of the IPL after the Mumbai Indians. By the end of the 2018 season, both CSK and MI had won 3 championships each. The Mumbai Indians have won back to back championships. Chennai Super Kings have won the championship in the year 2010,2011 and 2018. The 2018 win was really special for them as they came back after a 2 year absence and they proved that they still had it in them to be a force in the competition
The Chennai Super Kings team is full of superstars and have multiple people who represent the brand as brand ambassadors. The biggest brand perhaps in the game MS Dhoni is their captain. The Chennai crowd swears by the name of their Thala. Not far behind are the consistent performers for this team over the years in Suresh Raina and Ravindra Jadeja known as Chinna Thalla and Sir Jadeja. These three over the years have represented the game and the team really well. In the last few years, newer ambassadors such as Faf Du Plessis and Shardul Thakur have made a mark too.
In a season of two halves, the CSK team has so far played 7 games. The games have been played at various grounds in India and their performance has been what you would expect from the Champion team. There is however a cause for concern for them as the rest of the games are going to be played in the UAE where they do not have a great track record. However if there is something that you have come to associate with MS Dhoni and company, it is that they should not be written off at any stage. The ipl 2021 csk schedule is yet to be out for the second leg but when it comes out, they will begin planning for that stage.
It would be hard to imagine the IPL without one of the marquee franchises of the IPL. The Chennai Super kings are playing and are very much in contention for the top 4 spots in the IPL. Once the IPL resumes in UAE, they will be one of the teams which will have the most eyeballs on them. This may well be the farewell season of MS Dhoni so that makes it even more significant for them.