IPL Auction 2021: CSK could go after these three players to reinforce squad after a disappointing 2020 campaign- The three-time champions, Chennai Super Kings, have had a tough time in the last Indian Premier League season, finishing at seventh place with 12 points from 14 games. The ageing squad was one reason why many foresaw a squad overhaul. But CSK decided to retain the core of the team with MS Dhoni at the helm. However, they will still need reinforcements to bolster the squad at the mini-auction in Chennai on Thursday (February 18).
For the first time, Chennai missed the playoff spot and the problem came in the form of two missing players who opted out of the tournament. With Suresh Raina out of middle-order, CSK suffered as Sam Curran failed to provide the cover he was expected of. The next was Harbhajan Singh, whose services as an all-round option CSK missed greatly. Now that they have released Singh, Piyush Chawla, and Shane Watson deciding to call it quits, CSK will need an opener, a spinner and a reliable middle-order option.
Retained Players: MS Dhoni, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, KM Asif, Deepak Chahar, Dwayne Bravo, Faf du Plessis, Imran Tahir, N Jagadeesan, Karn Sharma, Lungi Ngidi, Mitchell Santner, Ravindra Jadeja, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shardul Thakur, Sam Curran, Josh Hazlewood, R Sai Kishore
Released Players: Kedar Jadhav, Murali Vijay, Harbhajan Singh, Piyush Chawla, Monu Singh, Shane Watson (retired)
Dawid Malan (opener): The English opener and the No 1 T20 batsman will be a central attraction at the IPL auction. With Rs 1.5 crore base price, Malan is expected to fetch big. But CSK with a purse of Rs 19.9 crore could go all in for Malan as they need to fill the void left by Watson. While they have traded in Robin Uthappa from Rajasthan Royals, his poor 2020 IPL campaign could force CSK to find a different option and Malan would fit the bill well.
Krishnappa Gowtham (spinner): If Imran Tahir plays the entire competition, he is expected to deliver the goods for CSK in the upcoming IPL. With him, Ravindra Singh Jadeja and Mitchell Santner in the squad, the spin department looks strong. However, after releasing two regular wicket-takers in Piyush Chawla and Harbhajan Singh, CSK will need a backup option or in case either of Tahir or Jadeja is not available for the whole competition.
Domestic talent Krishnappa Gowtham could offer them the option. The Karnataka off-spinner is a domestic powerhouse but hasn’t had his chance in the IPL. In 2018, with 312 runs and 11 wickets in 15 matches for Rajasthan Royals, he was one of the most successful all-rounders. In Gowtham, CSK might just find what they are looking for.
Umesh Yadav (pacer): With Lungi Ngidi, Shardul Thakur, Josh Hazlewood, Deepak Chahar and KM Asif, CSK’s pace attack looks occupied. But even then, they may choose to strengthen it further with a domestic pacer.
With Umesh Yadav being released from RCB, his experience could come in handy for CSK. While he hasn’t been successful in the IPL with RCB, CSK might go after him and offer him a second chance to revive his IPL career.
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