MS Dhoni announced his retirement from ODI and T20 cricket just before IPL 2020 could begin and ended months of speculation of his impending retirement. There were many cricket fans who were wondering whether MS Dhoni would continue to captain CSK going forward and CSK owners silenced those doubts by saying that MS Dhoni would not only lead CSK in 2020 but would most likely captain them at IPL 2021.
CSK Will Struggle To Make Playoffs
Before IPL 2020 started, bookmakers had CSK in the top three teams that were expected to win the IPL Championship in the UAE. They got it completely wrong as CSK have been a shadow of the team we know them to be. Their loss to Rajasthan Royals earlier this week saw them drop to the bottom of the IPL points table having played 10 games and lost 7 of them.
CSK coach Stephen Fleming admitted that their last loss just about sealed their fate this season as now it is almost impossible for them to qualify for the playoffs. A slim chance exists if some of the other teams blow it and allow CSK to go through. Stranger things have happened in the IPL but both Stephen Fleming and MS Dhoni know that CSK has failed miserably this season.
What Went Wrong For CSK
CSK have been one of the most dominant teams in the IPL since its inception along with the Mumbai Indians. Their performance this season has let down millions of CSK fans and likely the team owners. We take a look at what went wrong for CSK this season.
The Formula: CSK have always stuck to a core side for years on end as MS Dhoni wanted to stick with a tried and tested group of players. This formula worked well for CSK for close to a decade but let them down in 2020. Most of CSK’s players are past their prime and while their experience is invaluable, their age and rustiness showed clearly.
The Captain: MS Dhoni has been a phenomenal captain for CSK leading the side to three IPL Championships. However, it is clear to even hardcore Dhoni fans that MSD is no longer the player that he used to be and this IPL showed us that he is no longer the captain that he used to be. MS Dhoni has made a number of puzzling decisions throughout the tournament but the biggest shocker for most CSK fans is his stubbornness to continue to stick with his core set of players and not give other youngsters in the squad a chance.
The Execution: Trusted CSK players never delivered for MS Dhoni when it mattered. It started with Suresh Raina departing suddenly from the UAE which left a gaping hole for CSK at number 3. H Singh also pulled out and their absence definitely had an impact on the mindset and performance of the rest of the players.
CSK Needs A New Team For IPL 2021
CSK fans have come to grips with the fact that this is likely the last time they see all their favorite CSK players together. This could very well be the last time MS Dhoni leads the men in yellow. It could also be the last time we see MS Dhoni in the IPL. If CSK decide to replace MS Dhoni for IPL 2021 or if MS Dhoni decides to relinquish the captaincy, it will be interesting to see if he continues to play for CSK under another captain.
CSK owners need to think about getting a new team together and this includes getting a new captain. We will have to wait till the end of CSK’s run in the IPL to see what MS Dhoni and CSK management decide.