IPL 2020 : Gambhir recommends, ‘revamp entire CSK team’, CEO declares, ‘Dhoni to lead in 2021’

Before Chennai Super Kings takes on KingsXI Punjab in Dream11 IPL 2020 today, Gautam Gambhir has a big advice for CSK. According to Gambhir, CSK which has already been eliminated from the IPL 2020, ’needs to completely revamp their ageing squad for the next IPL’  The former India cricketer Gambhir in conversation with ESPNCricinfo said that, only 2-3 players from the current CSK squad can be retained for the next season, all rest needs to be changed. 

“CSK need to revamp their entire squad. They have many talented players in the team but most of them won’t continue. They have to change them, age is not on their side. Most of the players will change. CSK is not seen very active at auctions but in 2021 IPL auctions they probably will be the most active team’, said Gambhir to ESPNCricinfo. 
CSK had to endure their poorest ever season in the entire IPL history as they not only failed to qualify for the playoffs but they looked completely directionless and lost right from the beginning. According to Gambhir, barring Sam Curran and Ravindra Jadeza no one else deserve to stay in the team for next season. 
 
“Sam Curran has been the lone bring spot for CSK. In every department he contributed. Along with Curran, Ravindra Jadeza can be retained, rest needs to be changed”, said Gambhir to ESPNCricinfo. 
 
IPL 2020 : CSK CEO has already declared that MS Dhoni will lead CSK in 2021
 

Call it reverence for the former Indian captain or faith in MS Dhoni’s abilities, CEO of CSK, Kasi Viswanathan had already declared in an interview to TOI that Dhoni will continue to lead the team in IPL 2021. 

“Yes, definitely. I am very confident that Dhoni will lead CSK in 2021. He has won three titles for us in the IPL. This is the first year we have not qualified for the playoffs. No other team has done that. One bad year does not mean we will have to change everything,” Viswanathan told TOI
 
Not only CSK but Dhoni himself has been below-par on the field. In 12 matches this season, he has scored 199 runs at a strike rate of just 118.45. Although the 2021 IPL season is just six months away, the fact that Dhoni is 39 and past his prime means fingers are pointed on his personal form and future as well. But according to CSK CEO, team just got hit by too many bad things at the same time which pegged them back. 
 
“We didn’t play to our potential this season. We lost games that we should have won. That pushed us back. The withdrawals of Suresh Raina and Harbhajan Singh coupled with Covid cases in the camp meant that the balance of the side was upset,” he was quoted by TOI. 
 
 
IPL 2020 : End of road for CSK’s ‘Dads army’, fresh team on radar for IPL 2021 ?
Though CEO is still showing faith in the captain, coach Stephen Fleming had admitted that, CSK is a ‘ageing team’ and ‘has run out of juice’. 
 
“It’s fair to say looking at the IPL table now that this team may have run out of juice,” head coach Stephen Fleming said in the post-match presentation after one of the match, revealing that the morale in the dressing room was alarmingly low. 
 
“If you’re looking at the three-year cycle – we won the first year; lost off the last ball last year; and we always thought that the third year with an ageing squad would be difficult. And Dubai [UAE] has challenged us with a whole new set of requirements,” he said. 
 
The IPL 2020 is now a thing of past for CSK, their management and also the fans. Should they look beyond Dhoni and his old horses for IPL 2021 ? According to a source close to the team management, some tough calls surely will be taken for the next edition. 
 
“See as Fleming has said, lot of chinks in the armor has been exposed this time. Some tough calls surely will be taken. The only issue is there is little time between now and the next edition”, said the source close to CSK management on condition of anonymity to InsideSport last week. 
 
The problem CSK will face while rebuilding the team for the next edition of IPL is that BCCI is yet to announce whether fresh auctions will be conducted for IPL 2021 or the same teams will be retained. CSK definitely will have to fight on the timelines if they decide to rebuild. 
 
 
End of Road CSK’s DADS ARMY – Which players have seen their last IPL with CSK ?
 
It is difficult to predict which players will be shunted out of the squad at this stage. But one thing is certain, in the name of continuity CSK promoters or management is unlikely to persist with ‘ageing’ unit. This means it will be end of the road for most of the seniors in the squad. 
 
Players who are likely to be in the firing line –
 
– Harbhajan & Raina are already through with their 3 year contract with CSK
– Shane Watson – Difficult to imagine that CSK will persist with Watson for the new edition. He doesn’t bowl anymore and his batting bereft of consistency left a lot to be desired this time. 
– Kedar Jadhav – 8 games 60 odd runs, no sane management will persist with him for the next edition at the age of 36
– Piyush Chawla – Is also certain to get boot from CSK. 32 year old Chawla looked liability on the field and he bowled without any zing during the games he played
– Imran Tahir – Soon to be 42 is yet to get a game this IPL. No way he will be persisted for the next season
– Ambati Rayudu – He did well with opportunities he got but that charisma to win games on his own stays missed with Rayudu. He is another one who may get dropped for the next IPL
– Faf Du Plessis – Neither he failed in the batting nor his fitness is in doubt. He is also the 3rd highest scorer in Orange Cap List, but still CSK is unlikely to include him in the squad as they get on road to rebuild the squad for IPL 2021 and beyond