IPL 2020 MI vs CSK : Will Dhoni move up in batting order in Raina’s absence ?

The biggest decision MS Dhoni has to take before opening game of the Indian Premier League (IPL 2020) is to whether to promote himself up in the order or not ?
 
Suresh Raina is now missing from the Chennai Super Kings line up. And in his absence, who will bat at number 3 and 4 for the 3 times IPL champions CSK
 
Will it be Dhoni who will take the baton and move up the batting order or will it be someone else. Everyone in CSK is tightlipped about the team strategy. According to them as always, Dhoni is keeping all the cards close to his chest and no one knows anything about it. 
 
“Nothing can be revealed about the team’s strategy for the opening game. It is something that only stays in the dressing room”, says source close to the CSK team
 
CSK’s options in the batting department – 
Opening Slots – Shane Watson, Faf Du Plessis & Murali Vijay. 2 of these 3 will open CSK’s batting against Mumbai Indians
Number 3 Position – Ambati Rayudu or Dhoni himself 
Number 4 Position – Dhoni either promotes himself to number 4 or will have to send Ravinder Jadeja or Kedar Jadhav in the position. 
 
According to the experts, this is great opportunity for Dhoni to anchor the team by batting up the order. 
 

“It will be a good opportunity for MS Dhoni to come and bat at No. 3,” says Dhoni’s former teammate Gautam Gambhir

“And he has been away from the game for the last one year, so he would end up getting a lot more balls to face and then he can actually play the anchor innings as well which he has been doing for India for the last couple of years,” the two-time IPL-winning skipper said.


Gambhir said that Dhoni can come at one down as there are batsmen who can play the finishing game.

“So, MS Dhoni at No. 3 and then they have got depth with Kedar Jadhav, Dwayne Bravo, all those guys they can come in.

“So, I think it is going to be a great opportunity for someone like MS Dhoni and I am sure he is going to relish that. Also, Suresh Raina not being there, you want to have some experienced players batting at No. 3, so it could be MS Dhoni now,” he added.

PL 2020 MI vs CSK Live : Chennai Super Kings likely Line Up for the Opening Game
 
As CSK will not have the services of Hazlewood and Curran as well in the opening game, South African Lungi Ngidi will surely make it to the CSK playing11. Deepak Chahar who has now fully recovered from Covid-19 along with Shardul Thakur will be the other pace bowling options in the playing 11 for CSK
 
Bravo now will become the most important cog in the wheel for CSK as he will not only be expected to give solidity to the batting in the absence of Suresh Raina but will also have to play a crucial role with his four overs. 
 
CSK likely Bowling line up for the Opening game against Mumbai Indians
Fast Bowling Options in 11 for CSK – Ngidi / Thakur / Chahar / Bravo 
Spin Bowling Options in 11 for CSK – Jadeja / Chawla / Jadhav 
 
 
Another line of thought that must be getting deliberated by CSK management would be to draft Murali Vijay as opening partner of Shane Watson for the opening game. This will give them option to draft one extra spinner in form of either Mitchell Santner or Imran Tahir in the playing 11. But for that Du Plessis have to be rested which looks unlikely with a brittle battling line up like CSK