IPL 2019 | We understand we are an ageing team, says Stephen Fleming

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IPL 2019 | We understand we are an ageing team, says Stephen Fleming

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SportsCafe Desk

05/13/2019

Stephen Fleming has stated that he understands that the Chennai Super Kings are an ageing team, given that most of its core players are well into their thirties. This year’s runners-up have most of its players either in the twilight of their career or into the second half.

The Chennai Super Kings were not given much of a chance in the previous season of the Indian Premier League but they proved the critics wrong and emerged as the champions. Even in this season, they entered with more or less the same squad. The likes of MS Dhoni, Dwayne Bravo, Harbhajan Singh, Imran Tahir, Faf du Plessis, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, Kedar Jadhav and Shane Watson among others are an immensely experienced bunch of players but are also well into their thirties. The head coach Stephen Fleming opened up about the same and also revealed that they will recreate the side with new additions next year.

"We will give some time for dust to settle down. I think if you win one title and reach the final next time, you have had good two years. We do understand that we are an ageing team. So at some point, we just have to look at recreating the side, obviously MS as well,” he said post the loss in the finals on Sunday, reported PTI.

Many teams, especially, Delhi Capitals and Kings XI Punjab had brought in fresh players into the side in the mega auctions last year and made more additions this year too. The coach felt that CSK need to build their team on the likes of other teams and reckoned that they will plan with the skipper MS Dhoni after he returns from the upcoming World Cup, which is scheduled from May 30 to July 14 in the United Kingdom.

"He (Dhoni) will be travelling to the World Cup. A lot of talent has been established in other teams. You need to do it carefully and get the balance right, when you try to go for players who you think can deliver for us." asserted the former New Zealand skipper.

The CSK batsmen barring MS Dhoni and Faf du Plessis were in poor form throughout the season. Shane Watson was inconsistent for most part but returned with a splendid 80-run knock in the finals. Kedar Jadhav played 14 matches before getting injured but only scored 162 runs at a strike rate of 95.85. Ambati Rayudu’s strike rate of 93.06 was even worse and he could only manage 282 runs in 17 matches. Suresh Raina was also pretty inconsistent as he missed the 400 run mark by 17 runs and threw away his wickets by hitting rash shots in most matches. The coach defended his batsmen by pointing out towards the slow and turning nature of the pitch at Chepauk but did agree that they need to contribute more. 

"This year in Chennai was tough, the conditions were tough to read, hard to play. A little bit of training as well, our batters weren't big enough from the form point of view. If we look at the aggregate of numbers from our top order, we could have liked a bit more. Batting certainly was a weak part of our game this season, there is a lot of work to do,” explained the 46-year-old.

Despite all the weakness, CSK finished second on the points table will nine wins in 14 matches and lost only because they failed to beat Mumbai Indians on all four occasions including the first Qualifier and the finals. The coach reiterated that there was never any lack of effort.

"But at the same time, how much more do you need? We got to the final, we went till the last ball. Of course, we didn't have a good season with the bat. But there was never a lack of effort," signed off the former batsman.

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