Fans of Chennai Super Kings, the three-time IPL winners, were left disappointed last season when the franchise failed to reach the playoffs for the first time in history. MS Dhoni's men had incurred a forgettable journey in the UAE, finishing seventh in IPL 2020, with critics questioning their squad selection. Six months later, with only a handful of changes to their lineup, CSK are placed second in the points table in the ongoing IPL 2021, having lost only one out of their five matches.
Former Indian cricketer Murali Karthik believes that the players of CSK as a whole made an impact, the same players who failed to perform last year have bounced back this season with a decent form which has helped the franchise to revive.
"You may have a team comprising Sachin Tendulkar, Ricky Ponting, Brian Lara, Jacques Kallis, Kevin Pietersen, Adam Gilchrist, but if they fail to perform as a team, then even if they appear strongest on paper, the team as a whole will fail. The most important thing for a team is that all players maintain their form. For CSK, it did not work last season, but with only a few changes, yes Shane Watson isn't there, but they maintained their core and backed the players. Suresh Raina made a comeback this season and made an early impact as a batsman. Ravindra Jadeja wasn't as effective with the ball last year, but this year he has been in good form. Deepak Chahar's performance with the new ball has improved. In a nutshell, all the players this time are in form and that has helped Chennai," said Karthik in an exclusive conversation with India TV Cricket.
Chennai presently stand second in the points table. They will be up against Sunrisers Hyderabad on Wednesday in Delhi with the opportunity to go top of the table.