After ending their IPL 2020 on a high with a convincing 9-wicket win over Kings XI Punjab on Sunday (November 1), CSK skipper MS Dhoni was happy that the side finished strong but didn’t shy away from acknowledging their overall dismal show in this edition.
“It was a difficult campaign for us. I don’t think we played to the full potential,” said MS Dhoni after the yellow franchise won their third game on the trot, ending the tournament in emphatic fashion.
CSK played party spoilers to Kings XI, spurning their chance to qualify for the playoffs. Dhoni-led CSK were already out of the reckoning for a playoff berth – being the first side to go out of contention, much to the dismay of their fans.
At the presentation ceremony, Dhoni hinted at a new-look CSK next season: “A lot depends on what the BCCI decides upon the auction. We need to slightly change our core group and look for the next ten years. At the start of the IPL, we made a team and it served well. There comes a time where you have to shift a bit, hand it over to the next generation.”
At the toss, Dhoni was asked whether this was his last game and he responded by saying “Definitely not,” much to the delight of his millions of fans across the globe.
For the first time in their history, the three-time champions, CSK, failed to qualify for the IPL playoffs – which came as a surprise to many, considering the fact that they were the finalists last year and were being considered among the favourites this year.
Their batting became the Achilles heel as they failed to chase even sub-par totals. CSK’s chasing ability had become their hallmark over the past few seasons but this time their ageing side found the going too tough to handle.
Even Dhoni, marking his return to cricket after 437 days, looking rusty with the bat and failing to hit those trademark lusty blows at the death.
Thus, it was a dismal campaign by their own lofty standards. Although, they can take away a lot of positives after the conclusion of their campaign. They have a real gem at their hands in the form of Ruturaj Gaikwad, who scored his third consecutive fifty in the game against KXIP while Sam Curran also looked sharp throughout the tournament with several bright all-round performances. Some infusion of young blood at a few positions and CSK would be set for a much better performance next year.