The Super Kings have never failed to reach the qualifiers whenever they competed in the IPL and no other team can boast of that record, not even four-time champions Mumbai Indians. Dhoni's astute captaincy has played a part in it along with Super Kings' persistence to keep their core bench intact. This time too the case is not different. Apart from Dhoni, they have Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja and Dwayne Bravo to lead their campaign along with Harbhajan Singh, Ambati Rayudu, Imran Tahir, Shane Watson and Faf du Plessis.
From the last IPL auction, they had added Piyush Chawla and Sam Curran to their line-up. All these stars have seen several battles and remain unfazed in any situation. The pitches in UAE are on the slower side and that could play in favour of the Chennai team who has some excellent tweakers in their camp.
It is again that strange phenomenon of experience, which at one level their biggest advantage, turning out to be the Achilles Heel. The same outfit, well almost, has taken CSK to title in 2018 and to final in 2019 but this time the scenario is different. Can these veterans shake off the lethargy of not playing any cricket for a long time? Skipper Dhoni last played a competitive match in July 2019, India's semifinal exit from the ICC World Cup 2019 to be precise. Some others like Harbhajan, Bravo, Watson and Tahir too have endued long break from the game. In that context, can the Super Kings regain the cohesion that makes them a dangerous outfit.
MS Dhoni, Ambati Rayudu, KM Asif, Deepak Chahar, Dwayne Bravo, Faf du Plessis, Harbhajan Singh, Imran Tahir, N Jagadeesan, Karn Sharma, Kedar Jadhav, Lungi Ngidi, Mitchell Santner, Monu Kumar, M Vijay, Ravindra Jadeja, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shane Watson, Shardul Thakur, Suresh Raina, Sam Curran, Piyush Chawla, Josh Hazlewood, R Sai Kishore.
4. Stars to watch out for
MS Dhoni, Lungi Ngidi, Ravindra Jadeja, Suresh Raina, Josh Hazlewood.
5. IPL prediction
The Chennai Super Kings may struggle to find the right chords in IPL 2020. But the presence of Dhoni and a mix of battle-hardened veterans and talented youngsters could carry them to play-offs this time too. After all, a champion side should not be written off under any circumstances.