The 2018 version of the Indian Premier League will be marked by the iconic return of the Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royal into the lucrative Indian Premier League. The two teams will make their way back into the tournament in its 11th edition after serving a 2-year ban. The Chennai Super Kings fans are already on cloud 9 with the announcement of Mahendra Singh Dhoni leading the team. The news confirmed by the team director after the retention policy meeting held between the franchises.
Former India cricketer VB Chandrasekhar, who was also CSK’s chief selector and director of cricket operations, took out time to reveal his all-time Chennai Super Kings (CSK), XI. The team was published on the team’s official website.
Chandrasekhar opted to go with legendary Aussies Mathew Hayden and Michael Hussey as his two openers. Hussey was the orange cap winner in the year of 2013, and both the gentlemen have contributed hugely to the team’s success. Hayden is the biggest Chennai fan ever who comes out in south India’s traditional ‘lungi’ every now and was also a part of the of the Tamil Nadu Premier League.
Suresh Raina and Subramaniam Badrinath were included in the team to stabilise the middle order. Raina has been instrumental in the team throughout and is also the highest run-getter in the history of the franchise with 3699 runs. Badrinath has also made crucial contributions when needed chipping in with the 50s.
“Taking into consideration the four overseas player restriction, I’ll go with the Australian pair of Hayden and Hussey as my openers – Haydos for his power-hitting and Hussey for the structuring that he brings to the innings,” Chandrasekhar, who played seven ODIs for India, said.
“Raina is at No three as he does both, and provides impetus to the innings in the middle overs. Given that the top 3 are left-handers, it’s Dhoni at No 4, depending on the situation, or it could be the floater Badrinath, followed by Bravo.”
Mahendra Singh Dhoni has been selected as the skipper without a shade of doubt while Dwayne Bravo’s incredible abilities as an all-rounder gave him the 5th spot. The legendary Muttiah Muralitharan edged past ahead of the dangerous Andrew Flintoff while Ravichandran Ashwin, Ashish Nehra and Manpreet Gony also made it to the team.
“In Ashwin, Jadeja, Gony, Muralitharan and Nehra – not to forget Bravo – I have a varied and incisive attack that, when on song, most sides would struggle against. I would have ideally liked to pick Andrew Flintoff but in subcontinent conditions going in with Murali seems a better option as I’d push in one over from Murali early on to hold one back from Ashwin for the death.”
“I could open the attack with Ashwin and Nehra and go through the middle overs with Gony, Jadeja and Murali and again in Nehra and Bravo, I have death overs specialists. And in Dhoni, I got a world-class three-dimensional cricketer – wicket-keeper, batsman and inspiring leader. Naturally, he will be captaining my all-time CSK XI.” concluded Chandrashekhar.
1. Matthew Hayden
2. Michael Hussey (Orange Cap winner in 2013)
3. Suresh Raina (top run-getter for CSK with 3699 runs)
4. Subramaniam Badrinath
5. MS Dhoni (captain, wicket-keeper)
6. Dwayne Bravo (Purple Cap winner in 2013 & 2015)
7. Ravichandran Ashwin (top wicket-taker for CSK with 90 scalps)
8. Ravindra Jadeja
9. Manpreet Gony
10. Muttiah Muralitharan
11. Ashish Nehra