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IPL 2020: 'We always thought that a third year with an ageing group is going to be difficult' - Stephen Fleming after CSK's loss to RR

CSK are currently placed last in the IPL 2020 points table [P/C: iplt20.com]
CSK are currently placed last in the IPL 2020 points table [P/C: iplt20.com]
Kartik Iyer
ANALYST
Modified 21 Oct 2020, 17:41 IST
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Chennai Super Kings (CSK) coach Stephen Fleming has revealed that the franchise was fully aware that it would be difficult for a team comprising of senior cricketers to come good in the third year of the IPL post the auction.

He made this observation in the post-match press conference after the MS Dhoni-led side's IPL 2020 defeat against the Rajasthan Royals (RR).

Talking about his team's batting effort, Stephen Fleming pointed out that the RR bowlers led by Jofra Archer kept the CSK batters, who were further strangled by the spinners on a slow pitch, on a tight leash.

"It was a little bit slow at the start. But they have got good bowlers with Archer to lead the way. When you lose wickets on slow conditions, you are exposed to spinners and it is very difficult to create a run rate."

He added that CSK kept losing wickets at regular intervals, resulting in them always being in repair mode and unable to put the RR bowlers under any sort of pressure.

"We just lost wickets throughout and the consolidation periods became longer. We just struggled to get any real momentum to put them under enough pressure to create bad balls. They bowled well and we couldn't get them away."

Stephen Fleming on the road ahead for CSK

CSK have lost 7 of the 10 matches they have played in IPL 2020 [P/C: iplt20.com]
CSK have lost 7 of the 10 matches they have played in IPL 2020 [P/C: iplt20.com]

Stephen Fleming revealed that the CSK camp was a dejected lot after the loss as they knew the significance of yesterday's match in their quest for a playoff spot.

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"The mood in the camp is pretty down, to be honest and fair enough too. We have come close in a couple of games but today we were thoroughly outplayed. You usually get a bit of hope and confidence moving forward when you get positives but we knew that it was a crucial game today to stay real in the competition."

While observing that CSK might still have an outside chance to make it through to the IPL playoffs, the former Kiwi captain acknowledged that it would require a lot of external things to go their way apart from an improved performance from their team.

"There is an outside chance that we can possibly get through but when you are relying on other results and a change in form for your own team, it is very hard to be upbeat and positive."

He added that CSK would either have to put their best foot forward to win the next four matches and somehow stay alive in the competition, or blood some of the youngsters in the squad.

"We have got to look at our next 4 encounters to make sure that we either hang into the competition or find out some answers for some other players that we have got."

Fleming disclosed that the CSK management would be looking to overhaul the team, with the current outfit having run out of zest.

"I think it's fair that we will be turning that over. We have been very consistent over the years with our selections and it's fair to say looking at the table now that this team may have run out of a little bit of juice."
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Stephen Fleming signed off by stating that although CSK did very well in the first couple of years post the last auction, they always knew that the third year might prove to be difficult with an ageing squad. He added that the conditions in the UAE have compounded their problems.

Yesterday IPL match result, check here.

"But if you are looking at a three-year cycle, we won the first year, we lost off the last ball last year and I think we always thought that a third year with an ageing group is going to be difficult but the fact that Dubai has challenged us with a whole new set of requirements."

CSK are currently placed last in the IPL 2020 points table with 6 points in their kitty. With the team having just four more league matches to be played, this might be the first time that they would not be able to qualify for the playoffs of the IPL.


Published 20 Oct 2020, 10:19 IST
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