Pro Kabaddi League 2019: Can Tamil Thalaivas emulate what Chennai Super Kings achieved in IPL 2018?
After their return to the Indian Premier League in 2018 after a hiatus of 2 years, the squad which was set up by Chennai Super Kings (CSK) faced a lot of criticism at the start. The CSK squad was considered very "old" and not suitable to the fast and dynamic T20 format. However, the team proved that "experience" was priceless in any sport, as they went on to win the league. Despite the average age of the squad being more than 30 years, the team is now dominating the second consecutive season with the same squad.
From the players picked at the auction by Tamil Thalaivas, it seems the squad from Chennai has taken a leaf out of their cricket-counterparts' success strategy. With a bunch of players including the likes of Ajay Thakur, Manjeet Chhillar, Rahul Chaudhari, Ran Singh, Shabeer Bapu and Mohit Chhillar, Tamil Thalaivas has a very experienced squad to represent them in the upcoming edition.
It is necessary that a few youngsters are present in a team in a long tournament like PKL. Tamil Thalaivas also have a few of such players and hence, they possess the right mix of youth and experience which makes them a formidable squad for the next season. However, it is the presence of the veterans of the game which makes this squad very similar to that of the CSK squad.
In Ajay Thakur, Rahul Chaudhari and Shabeer Bapu, Tamil Thalaivas has probably the most experienced raiding department at their disposal. Most of the Kabaddi games go down to the wire and it is here that this aspect of the squad will be very helpful to them. Add to this the contribution of Manjeet Chhillar and the overseas options in the raiding department, and this department looks very impressive leading up to the tournament.
The defense department has Ran Singh and Mohit Chhillar, who are experienced enough to win matches on their own and hence, Thalaivas comprise of a few players who could win games on their own, just like the CSK squad. Manjeet Chhillar is an asset to the whole team, and retaining him ahead of Season 7 was a masterstroke by the franchise.
There are a lot of similarities in terms of the squad in both these franchises, and hence, Tamil Thalaivas will be hoping to emulate CSK's achievement in the upcoming season.