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IPL 2023 – Here’s the Best XI from the retained Chennai Super Kings players

The Chennai Super Kings have begun the process of reorganising their team for the future after a poor season in the 15th edition of the Indian Premier League. Robin Uthappa, one of their most spectacular players from last year, has already declared his retirement, while Dwayne Bravo, one of the IPL’s all-time greats, was not retained by the franchise ahead of the December 23 mini-auction.

According to certain speculations, the upcoming edition of the flagship competition will be skipper MS Dhoni’s farewell, hence there will be a lot of emphasis on the Chennai Super Kings. The club is the second most successful team in history, having won four championships, but their current play is worrying. Consistency is one of the reasons why the Chennai-based club failed to meet expectations in the previous season, but today, sans bio-bubble and Covid-19, the team will make their long-awaited return to their lair, Chepauk, which would be a big boost for the team.

Furthermore, the local players are well-acquainted with the conditions in Chennai as a result of the team they have created over the years, and Dhoni, who understands how to deploy his spinners, will be highly dangerous on their home field. As a result, the question of how Chennai would field a squad in the 16th season of the Indian Premier League emerges. Without further ado, here is Chennai’s Best XI, comprised of all retained players.

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Number 1. Ruturaj Gaikwad

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Ruturaj Gaikwad, 25, has been outstanding in the cash-rich competition. The Pune-born cricketer became the first uncapped player to earn the Orange Cap in 2021, and despite a downturn in form, the opener made 368 runs in 14 matches in 2022.

Gaikwad is known for providing Chennai with a great start, and if he can maintain that, Chennai may post a substantial total after 20 overs. As one of the youngest players in the Chennai squad, his mobility on the field is impressive, and CSK will rely heavily on him with the bat in the forthcoming season.

The kid will also be hungry for runs since, despite doing well in the IPL and for Maharashtra in the Vijay Hazare Trophy and Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, he isn’t receiving enough international opportunities. He is currently in excellent form in the Vijay Hazare Trophy, having scored 164 runs in two matches, including a century against Railways.

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Number 2. Devon Conway

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Devon Conway, a daring New Zealand international, was outstanding in the tournament’s previous edition despite playing only a few matches. The 31-year-old scored 252 runs in seven matches at a strike rate of 145.66.

Conway will have the freedom to explode right from the first ball with Gaikwad holding one end, making him extremely dangerous up front. Even though he isn’t in great shape right now, the series against India has the potential to change that.

Conway is a fantastic fielder in addition to being a devastating batter. Conway can keep the wickets if captain MS Dhoni is unable to play.

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Number 3. Moeen Ali

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Moeen Ali is perhaps Chennai’s greatest signing in recent memory. The all-rounder is from England and plays an important position in Chennai’s setup. He enjoys taking on the opposition and giving Chennai a great start on which their middle order may later capitalise. The 35-year-old is highly successful with the ball, and he is the type of player who is very consistent with his performance, something Dhoni and the CSK management much enjoy.

Ali scored 244 runs in 10 matches in 2022, with a strike rate of 137.85. He took eight wickets with the ball at a remarkable economy rate of 6.63. Moeen Ali can be Dhoni’s go-to choice in Cheapuk, where the ball spins because he hampers the opponent in the middle overs.

His current state, on the other hand, is a little alarming. England captain Jos Buttler doesn’t let him bowl much, despite his poor batting stats. He only scored 111 runs in his past seven T20 innings, but the good news is that Moeen will have plenty of time to go back to his best.

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Number 4. Ambati Rayudu

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Ambati Rayudu, the veteran, is probably the linchpin of Chennai’s batting order. The 37-year-old has proven his worth in Chennai colours over the years and is an indispensable member of their batting team. Rayudu has the ability to quickly alter gears in the gentleman’s game, whether as an anchor or a smasher.

Rayudu failed to live up to his promise in 2022, although he had previously delivered match-winning innings for Chennai. He scored 274 runs in 13 matches with a strike rate of 122.32. Rayudu has played 188 matches and scored 4190 runs throughout the history of the flagship competition, demonstrating the type of devastation he can create.

Rayudu’s form, like that of several of Chennai’s top-order hitters, is troubling. Rayudu scored 102 runs in four matches for Baroda while batting at number four in the Vijay Hazare Trophy. In T20s, his totals dropped even more, with only 107 runs from six matches.

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Number 5. Shivam Dube

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Chennai Super Kings management has given Shivam Dube carte blanche to play an aggressive brand of cricket. He was flawless in key matches in 2022, and if he can stay consistent, Dube may be a major threat in the centre.

Last season, the all-rounder scored 289 runs in 11 matches with a strike rate of 156.22. Shivam Dube is a versatile batsman who can bat anywhere in the order, but if given a specific job, he may be a match-winner. Despite being a decent bowler, neither Ravindra Jadeja nor MS Dhoni trusted him, although he can deliver a handful of overs in between if given an opportunity.

In terms of recent form, Dube was fantastic for Mumbai, ultimately helping his club win the Syed Mushtaq Ali trophy at Eden Gardens. His cameos with the bat were essential, and if he can play a similar role for Chennai, the 29-year-old may be a valuable asset to the club.

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Number 6. Mahendra Singh Dhoni

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MS Dhoni, the heart and soul of the Chennai Super Kings, will most likely tread the field for the final time in his career. Captain Cool’s name is connected with the CSK brand, and if this is actually his final season, he would love to go away with the trophy and match Rohit Sharma’s history of being the captain with the most IPL championships.

Last year, the 41-year-old scored 232 runs with a strike rate of 123.40 in 14 matches. After battling for many years, Dhoni finally showed signs of returning to form in the last year, but with another year off, it would be impossible for him to play the same style of cricket he once made famous.

More than his hitting, his captaincy will be critical for Chennai in the coming season. Few cricketers read the game better than Dhoni, and his ability to adapt to the circumstances is what has made him a game legend. Thus, more than his batting ability, his captaincy ability will be crucial for CSK.

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Number 7. Ravindra Jadeja

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Ravindra Jadeja, the previous season’s captain, was relieved of his duties in the middle of the season and did not return due to injury. During the trading window, there was a lot of talk about him leaving the organisation, but despite various offers from other teams, the Indian all-rounder opted to stay.

Last year, the 32-year-old scored 116 runs with a strike rate of 118.37 in ten matches. This demonstrates how bad he was the prior year, and he will be hoping to return to form in the tournament’s 16th edition. Jadeja took five wickets with the ball, which is much below his average.

The all-rounder is now injured and will miss India’s T20 World Cup. He will rejoin the India squad for the Test and ODI series against Bangladesh.

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Number 8. Dwaine Pretorius

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Dwayne Bravo’s absence in the next IPL is expected to be filled by Dwaine Pretorius. The South African international, on the other hand, is yet to make an impression in the competition.

Pretorius made 44 runs with the bat and took six wickets in just six matches for the Chennai Super Kings last season. His economy of 10 is quite high, and this must be changed if he is to be a regular part of the playing XI. However, due to his excellent strike rate of 157.14 in the previous season, he is expected to earn more opportunities with the bat in the following season.

The 33-year-old hasn’t played a single game in the previous month, and his form before to that is also concerning. However, if he gets going, he can be tremendously deadly, and this is where CSK would like to cash in.

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Number 9. Deepak Chahar

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Deepak Chahar, who missed out on the IPL in 2022, also missed out on a trip to Australia for the T20 World Cup. As a result, the cricketer will be eager for success and, above all, will want to make the national squad for the ODI World Cup in 2023.

Chahar’s return to Chennai Super Kings would put him in charge of the bowling unit once more. He was fantastic with the ball in 2019, and skipper MS Dhoni can bring out the best in him ahead of the World Cup. His batting background is also encouraging, and it will enable Chennai hitters to play an aggressive type of cricket when their batting runs deep.

His present form with the ball is mediocre. The bowler took three wickets in three T20Is against South Africa, and his performance against the Proteas in the first T20I at Mohali demonstrated his skill with the ball. If he can keep up, Chahar would be able to assist Chennai to capture their sixth championship.

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Number 10. Maheesh Theekshana

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Because of the twisting pitches at Chepauk, the 22-year-old Sri Lankan spin magician will be key for Chennai. He has the potential to be a match-winning batsman, and he’ll only get better under MS Dhoni’s tutelage in the coming season.

Theekshana took 12 wickets at an economy rate of 7.46 in nine matches for CSK last year. As the squad’s lone elite spinner, the Sri Lankan will be held accountable for his performance.

In terms of current form, Theekshana took 9 wickets in the just-ended T20 World Cup while remaining quite frugal. If he can maintain his current form, Theekshana might be a candidate for the Purple Cap next season.

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Number 11. Mukesh Chowdhary

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In the previous competition, Mukesh Chowdhary was Chennai’s top bowler. Mukesh was really useful with the new ball, and he may be highly dangerous alongside Deepak Chahar in the future season.

Mukesh took 16 wickets at an economy of 9.32 in 13 matches during the 15th edition of the IPL. He has the ability to pick wickets at regular intervals but also concedes a lot of runs. This is one of the things he has to work on in the coming season.

In terms of his present form, he has performed admirably in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, but the wickets have dried up. He also didn’t play much middle-order cricket, which might be one of the reasons, but he still has a lot of space to grow.