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IPL 2022 – Benched Chennai Super Kings players who deserve a chance to play in the starting XI

As the 15th edition of the Indian Premier League approaches the midway point, the points table is reshuffled after practically every game. The defending champions Chennai Super Kings, on the other hand, have had a rough season. Many CSK followers are reminded of the 2020 season, when the team finished in the bottom half of the table, unable to establish a winning combination.

The squad has won only two of their seven IPL 2022 matches thus far. With four points and a net run rate of -0.534, CSK are now in second position, just ahead of arch-rivals Mumbai Indians, who have lost all eight games this season.

CSK retained all-rounders Moeen Ali and Ravindra Jadeja prior to the TATA IPL 2022 mega auction. MS Dhoni, the former captain, and youthful opener Ruturaj Gaikwad, who won the Orange Cap in the IPL 2021, were the other two players retained.

However, in light of CSK’s troubles, here is a look at some benched players who could help CSK turn things around in the second half of the season.

Number 1. Rajvardhan Hangargekar

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Despite being a key member of India’s successful U-19 World Cup 2022 campaign, Rajvardhan Hangargekar is yet to appear for CSK this season.

CSK acquired Hangargekar for a stunning INR 1.5 crore in the major auction held barely a week after the U-19 World Cup, which caused the cricketing world to take note of the young prodigy’s development.

However, supporters were taken aback when they saw Rajvardhan shouting for CSK in the stands rather than on the field. His arrival in the playing XI is widely anticipated, as he possesses the capacity to generate early breakthroughs for his team and also has the ability to bat in cameo appearances.

 

Number 2. Devon Conway

 

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Devon Conway, New Zealand’s left-handed hitter, has been making headlines since he was selected the ICC Cricketer of the Month for June 2021.

However, in the IPL 2022, he has only had one opportunity to demonstrate his potential, which came in the competition’s opening encounter against Kolkata Knight Riders. Regrettably, Conway managed only three runs. With CSK in need of additional batting punch, the four-time champions may explore re-signing him, most likely in place of Kiwi partner Mitchell Santner. Conway can also contribute with the ball for a few overs if necessary, making him a possible surprise package for opponents.

 

Number 3. Narayan Jagadeesan

 

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Narayan Jagadeesan, 26, is a right-handed wicketkeeper batsman who has yet to make his India debut. He appeared in five matches for Chennai Super Kings in the IPL 2020, scoring 33 runs in two innings. Jagadeesan debuted for Tamil Nadu in 2016 and was acquired by CSK in 2018. Since then, the franchise has continuously demonstrated its faith in the youngster.

Over the years, his performance in domestic cricket has been nothing short of amazing. With 364 runs in seven innings, he was the leading run scorer in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy 2020-2021. Additionally, he was Tamil Nadu’s best run scorer in the Vijay Hazare Trophy 2020-2021, with a century against Punjab.

Jagadeesan might be the missing piece in Chennai’s puzzle, assuming MS Dhoni continues to keep. He could, however, be tested out as a pure batter in the middle order, which now appears to be primarily reliant on Shivam Dube and, to a lesser extent, Ambati Rayudu.