Former Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) captain Gautam Gambhir believes that MS Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings (CSK) won’t have much pressure to qualify for the IPL 2021 playoffs.
Chennai Super Kings made a massive difference in the first half of IPL 2021 after they finished seventh on the points table last year. Currently, the yellow brigade is placed on the second position with 10 points behind table-toppers Delhi Capitals and would probably need two or three more victories to book their berth in the knockout stages.
CSK have players who do not play much cricket, but it can be a blessing at times because you don’t have the pressure to play international cricket: Gautam Gambhir
Only all-rounders Ravindra Jadeja and Shardul Thakur from CSK have been selected in the preliminary T20 World squad of India with pace bowler Deepak Chahar named as a reserved player.
England duo of Moeen Ali and Same Curran, West Indies all-rounder Dwayne Bravo and South Afric bowler Lungi Ngidi are the team’s overseas players who are also part of their respective nation’s squads for the mega event.
Gambhir is of the opinion that many CSK players won’t be playing international cricket after IPL so there won’t be any kind of pressure hanging around them and even if they happen to start slow in the second phase of IPL 2021, still they would qualify in the top four.
“Yes, they have the players who do not play much cricket, but it can be a blessing at times because you don’t have the pressure to play international cricket or making a comeback. They have put themselves in a position that even if they start slightly slowly, it will not make too much of a difference. If they start slowly in one or two matches, you will still be able to qualify for the top four and once you do that, it could be anyone’s game,” Gambhir said on Star Sports.
CSK will be better placed after playing at Wankhede stadium: Gautam Gambhir
CSK played their first five fixtures at the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai before they moved to Delhi to play their other two games. Dhoni and his men won four out of their five games in Mumbai and Gambhir feels that they will be in a better position after playing on a difficult ground like Wankhede.
“Plus after playing at the Wankhede, if you are going to these conditions, you will be better placed because Wankhede is very difficult ground. They have done something good to be in this position despite having such a squad. They will take that confidence with them,” Gambhir mentioned.
CSK will play their first match in the second half of IPL 2021 against Mumbai Indians on September 19 at Dubai International Cricket Stadium.