IPL 2023: Dhoni's fitness in focus as CSK faces RCB

The knee has been troubling Dhoni since the start of the tournament but he has ended up playing all four games so far


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Chennai Super Kings batter MS Dhoni. — PTI
Chennai Super Kings batter MS Dhoni. — PTI

Published: Sun 16 Apr 2023, 10:56 PM

Chennai Super Kings will look to pick up the pace in the middle overs and hope their inspirational skipper MS Dhoni takes the field despite a knee niggle against fierce rival Royal Challengers Bangalore in the eagerly awaited Southern derby in the IPL in Bengaluru on Monday.

It will be a special atmosphere at the Chinnaswamy Stadium when the two teams battle to gain momentum after an up and down campaign so far.

The knee has been troubling Dhoni since the start of the tournament but he has ended up playing all four games so far.

CSK CEO Kasi Viswanathan expects the skipper to lead against RCB.

“I don’t think he will miss the game but we will have to wait and see till tomorrow evening,” he told PTI.

Dhoni was seen limping a bit after the loss to Rajasthan Royals at home earlier this week, raising questions over his availability for the RCB game.

Even though Dhoni has been coming out to bat at number eight, he has managed to make an impact and almost took his team over the line in the last-ball finish against the Royals.

Openers Ruturaj Gaikward and Devon Conway have been doing their job and Ajinkya Rahane too seems to have reinvented himself while batting at number three but the middle-order needs to do more.

The likes of Ambati Rayudu, Shivam Dube and Ravindra Jadeja have not been able to get going. Dube especially has struggled to gain fluency in all his four innings and that reflects in his strike rate of 118.84.

The bowling department has been hit by injures, first they lost Deepak Chahar and now Sisanda Magala is expected to be out of two weeks at least.

Star all-rounder Ben Stokes is likely to regain full fitness by end of the month.

RCB, on the other hand, got a much needed win on Saturday afternoon and will be aiming to build on the performance against Delhi Capitals.

Virat Kohli’s form has been the biggest positive for them. Kohli collecting boundaries with his sublime off side play is enough to create discomfort in the opposition camp and will be fired up for an encore against CSK.

Skipper Faf du Plessis too has led from the front while batting at the top alongside Kohli.

Monday's match

Royal Challengers Bangalore vs Chennai Super Kings


6 pm UAE Time


Matches 30

RCB won 10

CSK won 19

No result 1


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