Chennai Super Kings Squad: Can CSK Win IPL 2023?
The Indian Premier League is less than a week away from getting underway, with its sixteenth edition starting from March 31. It will be defending champions Gujarat Titans taking on Chennai Super Kings in the curtain raiser of the IPL 2023. The much anticipated tournament will have 10 teams fighting for the coveted trophy. A total of 70 matches will take place before the playoffs, with the league concluding on May 28.
Before the IPL 2023 begins, we bring you a special piece on fan favourite Chennai Super Kings. The ‘Yellove Army' has won four titles in the history of IPL and they will be eyeing another one this season which could be MS Dhoni's farewell. We take a look at if the Chennai Super Kings squad possess the quality to win the IPL 2023?
Can CSK Win the IPL 2023?
So what do we think… Can CSK win the IPL 2023? The answer isn't straight forward. They definitely are amongst the favourites to make it to the playoffs because of the home advantage and the fact that several other teams are battling much bigger issues. From the playoffs, it's all about how they can adapt away from home and on the big stage. It is Dhoni's side and you can not count out a title win.
To really dig into this question, we need to break down the Chennai Super Kings squad. Read on for an analysis of the Chennai Super Kings players, their overall strengths and weaknesses, and what they'll need to do in order to have a successful IPL 2023 season.
Chennai Super Kings Squad: IPL 2023
Chennai Super Kings' previous season was one to forget as the franchise had several issues, including off the field. They had named Ravindra Jadeja the new captain a few days prior to the season and removed him from captaincy after a bad start midway into the tournament. MS Dhoni was handed back the reins and he will continue leading the side. There were reports of Jadeja leaving the franchise but they have sorted out the issues.
Full CSK Team Player List and Auction Prices
|MS Dhoni (c)||Batter/Wicket-keeper||12 crore|
|Devon Conway||Batter||1 crore|
|Ruturaj Gaikwad||Batter||6 crore|
|Ambati Rayudu||Batter/Wicket-keeper||6.75 crore|
|Subhranshu Senapati||Batsmen||20 lakh|
|Moeen Ali||All-Rounder||8 crore|
|Shivam Dube||All-Rounder||4 crore|
|Rajvardhan Hangargekar||Bowler||1.5 crore|
|Dwaine Pretorius||All-Rounder||50 lakh|
|Mitchell Santner||Bowler||1.9 crore|
|Ravindra Jadeja||All-Rounder||16 crore|
|Tushar Deshpande||Bowler||20 lakh|
|Mukesh Chowdhary||Bowler||20 lakh|
|Matheesha Pathirana||Bowler||20 lakh|
|Simarjeet Singh||Bowler||20 lakh|
|Deepak Chahar||Bowler||14 crore|
|Prashant Solanki||Bowler||1.2 crore|
|Maheesh Theekshana||Bowler||70 lakh|
|Ajinkya Rahane||Batter||50 lakh|
|Ben Stokes||All-Rounder||16.25 crore|
|Shaik Rasheed||Batter||20 lakh|
|Nishant Sindhu||All-Rounder||60 lakh|
|Sisanda Magala||Bowler||50 lakh|
|Ajay Mandal||All-Rounder||20 lakh|
|Bhagath Varma||All-Rounder||20 lakh|
Ruturaj Gaikwad, Devon Conway, Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Ambati Rayudu, MS Dhoni (c/wk), Shivam Dube, Ravindra Jadeja, Rajvardhan Hangargekar, Deepak Chahar, Maheesh Theekshana
IPL Auction: Stokes bought for ₹16.25 crore
CSK's biggest signing for this season was England all-rounder Ben Stokes. The English superstar was a hot property in the IPL 2023 auction and was eventually bought by the Super Kings for ₹16.25 crore.
Going Ballistic! 💥⚔️#WhistlePodu #Yellove 🦁💛 @imjadeja @benstokes38 pic.twitter.com/IZ0QjqNPXd
— Chennai Super Kings (@ChennaiIPL) March 26, 2023
They had also bought New Zealand bowling all-rounder Kyle Jamieson but he was ruled out of the season with an injury. CSK have brought in Sisanda Magala as a replacement.
The franchise has retained most of their Chennai Super Kings players from the previous season, including their overseas set of Moeen Ali, Devon Conway, Mitchell Santner, Maheesh Theekshana, Dwaine Pretorius and Matheesha Pathirana. Dwayne Bravo, who has been an integral part of the franchise for a decade, retired from the IPL and took up a coaching role.
Indian Players in the Chennai Super Kings Squad 2023
Talking about Indian players, Robin Uthappa has been let go from the Chennai Super Kings squad 2023, with Ajinkya Rahane brought in for this season. Chennai were depleted last season with the absence of right arm seamer Deepak Chahar who was out injured. Chahar is fit to play this season and will be leading their attack.
Chennai Super Kings have suffered a blow ahead of the season with Mukesh Choudhary doubtful to play due to an injury. The left arm pacer was one of the few positive things from their previous season.
Strengths and Weaknesses
The four time league champions struggled to find a right combination last season. And while they have made some changes to their squad, they have strengths as well as weaknesses.
The biggest strength for Dhoni's men in IPL 2023 could be the fact that the tournament will be played in home and away format. The Chepauk stadium which has historically assisted spinners, has been a fortress for Chennai Super Kings over the years. They have played 59 matches at the venue and have won 40 of those. Playing seven games in the group stage here should ease their path to the playoffs.
The spin attack is another big strength of this Chennai Super Kings squad. Maheesh Theekshana is one of the best T20 bowlers in the world and will be a key player for them in the powerplay and in death overs. They also have Ravindra Jadeja and Moeen Ali, both of whom can be big threats when there's help on offer.
Chennai Super Kings are likely to have Devon Conway open the batting alongside Ruturaj Gaikwad. The duo will be extremely crucial for the franchise. Gaikwad has scored 1207 runs in the IPL at an average of 39 while striking at 130. Conway was left out after their first game last season but was brought back in the second half. He scored 252 runs in seven innings at an average of 42 and strike rate of 146.
This Chennai Super Kings squad has several issues compounding them for IPL 2023. The biggest concern for them will be the pace bowling attack. While they have Deepak Chahar back, Mukesh Choudhary's injury has put a hole in their pace attack.
With Devon Conway, Moeen Ali and Ben Stokes being the three certainties, they only have one overseas spot for bowling and Maheesh Theekshana is too good to be left out. Which means CSK have to manage with Indian pace options. The impact player rule will help to an extent but overall the pace attack is a big weakness.
The Ben Stokes problem. The Englishman is one of the biggest names in world cricket but his T20 record hasn't been great. And simply put, he does not fit into the CSK set-up. His inclusion will impact their overall squad combination, with Moeen Ali likely to be pushed down the order as Stokes prefers batting in the top order. They could also move Conway into the middle order to accommodate Stokes at opening.
CSK have Conway, Stokes, Moeen Ali, Ravindra Jadeja and Shivam Dube in the batting line-up. The presence of that many left handers is not ideal and it could be a big problem for them. The two right handers in the middle order, Ambati Rayudu and Dhoni are past their prime and might not be as effective.
Chennai Super Kings History
The franchise from Tamil Nadu has a rich history in the Indian Premier League. CSK are the second most successful franchise, having won four IPL titles and two champions league T20 titles. Talking strictly about the IPL, Chennai Super Kings have been the most consistent team. Since the inception, they have made it to the playoffs in all seasons they have played in except two.
The MS Dhoni-led side reached the final in the inaugural season but lost to Rajasthan Royals. They won their first IPL trophy in 2010, beating Sachin Tendulkar-led Mumbai Indians in the final and did a double by beating Royal Challengers Bangalore in the final in IPL 2011. CSK were eyeing a hattrick but Kolkata Knight Riders ended their domination in 2012.
|2016||Did Not Play|
|2017||Did Not Play|
Chennai Super Kings lost their second straight final, losing to Rohit Sharma's Mumbai Indians in 2013. They lost two more finals to none other than Mumbai Indians in 2015 and 2019.
After being outlawed for two years due to a match-fixing scandal, CSK made a triumphant return in 2018 when they defeated Sunrisers Hyderabad to clinch their third IPL title.
Chennai Super Kings had their worst season in IPL 2020, finishing seventh but they bounced back to win the next season. The men in yellow had another horror season last year, where they finished second last with only four wins out of 14 group matches.
Chennai Super Kings IPL 2023 Schedule
The IPL 2023 like last year has two virtual groups with each team playing two matches against every team from the other group and one match versus the four teams in the same group. The Chennai Super Kings team are placed in Group B alongside Sunrisers Hyderabad, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Punjab Kings and Gujarat Titans.
IPL 2023 also returns to the ‘home and away' fixtures format, which means CSK will play seven matches at their home M. A. Chidambaram Stadium famously known as the Chepauk. The former four-time champions begin their IPL 2023 campaign with a clash against the defending champions Gujarat Titans in Ahmedabad on March 31.
How many times have CSK won the IPL? CSK have won the IPL four times.
Who is CSK's captain? MS Dhoni will captain CSK in the IPL 2023.
Will CSK win the IPL 2023? They aren't the bookies favourites heading into the IPL 2023, but you can never write off the four-time champions, who have made the playoffs in all but two of the seasons they've played.