Chennai Super Kings (CSK) head coach Stephen Fleming revealed that the franchise was written off ahead of the IPL 2021 season. They had finished in seventh place in IPL 2020 that was held in UAE, their worst-ever performance in a season.
Mainly consisting of players in their 30s, CSK was called the ‘Dad’s Army’ because of its ageing– players. After failing to qualify for the playoffs for the first time in their history last season, CSK was expected to have another poor outing.
However, the squad showed why they are the most consistent team in IPL, getting back to their usual form and taking opponents apart at will. They defeated KKR in the final on October 15, Friday, to secure their fourth IPL title. Speaking at the post-match press conference, Fleming said:
“If you look back when we were called Dad’s Army in the first year (2018), I think a lot of people had no hope from us to maintain the competitiveness during this cycle.”
“There is a satisfaction around and a lot of pride over what players have achieved. There was a challenge with the ageing side, and I am very proud of what CSK have done and how they have played.”
“It might be an end of an era” – Stephen Fleming
The IPL 2022 season will see the addition of two new teams followed by a mega auction. As a result, teams are expected to undergo major changes in their squads. Fleming pointed out the same thing, indicating that the bunch of players in CSK at the moment may not get a chance to play together again.
“Well, maybe. I don’t know, and there were emotions around. It might be an end of an era as you might not get some players back. There is some emotion around this last game, so when you win it, it’s a celebration but also a recognition of what the players have put in,” Fleming added.
Faf du Plessis earned the Man of the Final award for his 59-ball 86 studded with seven fours and three maximums. Shardul Thakur was the pick of the bowlers, claiming three wickets. He was ably supported by Josh Hazlewood and Ravindra Jadeja, who took two wickets each.
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