Why Chennai Super Kings need Suresh Raina back


Chennai Super Kings continued to struggle in their batting performances for the second game in a row as the side conceded a 44-run defeat to the Delhi Capitals in Dubai on Friday. The side was restricted to 131/5 in the 176-run chase in the game, and the CSK fans were justifiably displeased from the performances with the bat.

Protea captain Faf du Plessis has borne the brunt for scoring runs for CSK. The Chennai Super Kings team management lamented that the team is struggling without the services of Suresh Raina and Ambati Rayudu.

Suresh Raina

It is no secret that Raina, the second-highest run-scorer in the IPL, is key to CSK in terms of big contribution and balance he gives to the side. Raina withdrew from the 2020 edition of the tournament in early September and returned to India, following a fatal attack on his relatives in Punjab. The former Indian cricketer took to Twitter to urge the Punjab government to address the case, which was duly solved according to a statement from the Punjab police.


Chennai Super Kings faces problems aplenty

Conventional wisdom suggests that CSK might have a tough time in IPL this season, but they have enough experience and knowhow to last the testing times. They are led by MS Dhoni, a proven leader, who has the knack of getting better of the situation. However, It gets only trickier to predict the fortunes of CSK in the upcoming tournament so better to avoid any kind of soothsaying when it comes to one of the most successful teams in the IPL.

Just like the previous two years, CSK will once again depend heavily on their experienced international players to make an impact. Apart from Dhoni, the likes of Faf du Plessis, Shane Watson, Dwayne Bravo, Ravindra Jadeja, Imran Tahir need to play crucial roles if the team wants to go deep in the tournament. The team will surely miss Raina, whose batting prowess, as well as his energy on the field, have been immense in the previous years. It’s not just his on-field activities, but Raina has been a positive influence in the dressing room, a perfect example for youngsters.

After the damaging defeat on Friday, coach Stephen Fleming also conceded that the spin department has been an area of concern with Piyush Chawla and Ravindra Jadeja leaking aplenty against Rajasthan and Delhi. However, the head coach pointed out that there are difficulties in getting the combination right without becoming batter-heavy or bowler-heavy in the absence of some “key players” in their ranks.

CSK has high hope

Suresh Raina, a week back provided some hope to CSK by suggesting that he has been training even while quarantining in India and mentioned that fans might see him with the CSK team in the UAE again.

CSK present a cult figure in the history of IPL. In the past, they’ve seen many adversities and risen gloriously in the aftermath. Lack of key players will surely test their mantle, but the players, captain, coach and fans alike will know that it just takes one good performance to turn the tide.

Opener Shane Watson can be prone to inconsistency, so a lot will depend on the likes of Faf, Rayudu, Jadhav and Jadeja to make for the absentees.

Having lost 2 games on the bounce, CSK will welcome a 6-day break as their next game comes against Sunrisers Hyderabad on October 2. But more than the break, CSK desperately need to break free of the losing spree.

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