IPL 2021 is just 1 week away from us. As promised, today we’ve come up with an in-depth SWOT analysis of Chennai Super Kings. The MS Dhoni led team had an underwhelming IPL season last year in UAE. The team seemed to miss most marks and failed to make it to the play-offs. For the first time in IPL history, the 3-time IPL trophy winner failed to make it to the playoffs. The team won a few matches as a saving grace and ended up one place above the last position and were 7th on the table.
This year, cricket pundits and analysts were expecting the yellow-jersey team administration to make several changes in the team combination and go as far as not retaining some of their players. However, to everyone’s surprise, the management decided to take the questionable decision of retaining most of their players. However, in the trading window, the team ended up signing Robin Uthappa, Moeen Ali, Cheteshwar Pujara, and C Hari Nishaanth. Let’s take a look at CSK’s complete squad and then take a deep dive into the team’s SWOT.
IPL 2021: Chennai Super Kings Complete Squad:
Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain), Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, KM Asif, Deepak Chahar, Dwayne Bravo, Faf du Plessis, Imran Tahir, N Jagadeesan, Karn Sharma, Lungi Ngidi, Mitchell Santner, Ravindra Jadeja, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shardul Thakur, Sam Curran, R Sai Kishore, Moeen Ali, K Gowtham, Cheteshwar Pujra, Harishankar Reddy, Bhagath Varma, C Hari Nishanth.
Chennai Super Kings SWOT Analysis
Chennai Super Kings Strengths: Experience, experience & experience
In case you one glance over at the complete squad of CSK mentioned above, one should note that CSK is one of the only teams to have a plethora of experienced players in their squad. Right from captain cool MS Dhoni, to his partner in crime Suresh Raina, to West Indian flamboyant pacer Dwayne Bravo, to internet’s favorite spinner Ravindra Jadeja, all these players have more than a couple of decades worth of experience to them. To balance them out, Shardul Thakur, Deepak Chahar, and Sam Curran come in the form of young blood. Another important strength of CSK is its possession of more than a handful of all-rounders in the form of Moeen Ali, Ravindra Jadeja, Deepak Chahar, Dwayne Bravo, Shardul Thakur. All of these players have a potential to dominate the opposition and turn the game around when needed.
Chennai Super Kings Weakness: Over reliance on the experience of an aging playing unit
It is said that what can be a team’s biggest strength, can also be its biggest weakness. CSK is the epitome of this notion. Last year, the team lost its way and had an underwhelming season due to the fact that it relied heavily on MS Dhoni’s captainship along with the prowess of other experienced players. The team’s biggest weakness could come in the form of over reliance on these players. Especially because Dhoni, Jadeja, Rayudu, Bravo, and many other players have retired from international cricket and are rarely seen playing on domestic level. This lack of practice may end up hurting CSK in the long run. MS Dhoni’s form in last IPL could be the team’s biggest stress point and Ravindra Jadeja still down with an injury could be adding another stress point on the team administration.
Chennai Super Kings Opportunities: Moeen Ali’s ability to contribute with both ball and bat
English all-rounder Moeen Ali comes to CSK as the replacement of Harbhajan Singh. CSK bagged Moeen Ali this year for Rs. 7 crores. Prior to CSK, he had played for RCB. The left-handed spinner was seen at his best during the 4-match Test series between England and India. Not only did Moeen take 8 wickets in the 2nd Test at Chepauk, he also looked to be in fine form with bat as well. In his IPL career, Ali has picked up 10-wickets in his 19 games with an efficient economy rate of just over 7 runs an over. Off late Ali has improved his T20 game and has cemented his position in England’s T20 team. If Moen gets going with bowl, he could be the all-rounder that will change the course of game with ease.
Chennai Super Kings Threats: MS Dhoni’s form
The last season of IPL was no less than a nightmare for CSK fans as CSK not only failed to qualify for the playoffs for the first time in the tournament’s history, but the CSK-skipper also looked to be in a rut of a form. The Ranchi-based player, who helped his team lift the World Cup in 2011, struggled to run between the wickets and play shots the way he was known to. After a break that lasted for a period of more than a year, Dhoni made a comeback in IPL 2020. IPL and Dhoni’s fans were looking forward to him playing a cricket that would remind them of his initial days. However, they were left underwhelmed as CSK captain could only make 200 runs in 14 games at a horrendous average of 25.