IPL 2020: 3 overseas openers Chennai Super Kings might target in the IPL auction
One of the most successful franchises in the history of the Indian Premier League (IPL), Chennai Super Kings have often had a proper balance in their squad leading into any of the previous editions of the league.
However, in 2019, it was peculiar to see how they lacked to put together a solid opening partnership after the failure of their regular openers in Ambati Rayudu and Shane Watson.
The Dhoni-led team never had a proven opener to back their under-firing opening duo in the last season. CSK's openers averaged worst in the entire season in 2019 along with least runs scored in the power-play for any team.
There was a serious lack of runs at the top of the order which indeed built excess pressure on the middle-order players to score heavily.
In the league going forward, Dhoni and the team management would want to ensure a back-up to their struggling openers in IPL 2020.
The 'Men in Yellow' would be in desperate need of a few rock-solid openers who have had the hang of scoring runs at the top of the order in T20s.
This will leave CSK with a task in hand at the upcoming IPL auction in Kolkata to bid for some reliable openers for a confirmed spot which will be up for grabs.
They might even want to rope in some foreign talent, given a lot of overseas players have proven their mettle in various T20 leagues around the globe in the recent past.
Here we take a look at 3 overseas openers CSK might target at the auction in December:
1. Aaron Finch
The Australian limited-over skipper is in red-hot form ever since his ouster from the Test team in 2018. Ranked No.4 in the ICC T20I rankings for batsmen, Aaron Finch has re-invented himself, focusing solely on the white-ball format.
His aggressive approach as an opener is a blessing for any team. He loves to take on the bowlers and plunders runs at will, especially in T20s.
He leads Australia from the front by taking the attack to the opposition quite early in his innings. With his power and ability to clear the ropes with ease, he will be a great asset even for CSK on smallish grounds in India.
His recent form against Sri Lanka and Pakistan, is a menacing sign for the opposition.
It is no doubt that the 33-year old will be in great demand in this year's IPL auction. In 2019, he once again continues to strike the ball in excess of 150.
2. Tom Banton
One of the most discussed names in recent times, Tom Banton is touted as one of the future stars for England. The 20-year old made his T20I debut against New Zealand after earning praises for his stint with his county side Somerset in all formats of the game.
At such a young age, the wicket-keeper opening batsman has caught the eye with his inventive stroke play in the last two editions of the T20 Blast in England.
In the lead-up to the IPL auction, a piece of news surfacing the Internet saw Banton already being contacted by IPL franchises, Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings, as a possible inclusion in their side as an opener for IPL 2020.
CSK might well rope in the youngster, given how badly they are in need of a fearless opener to attack in the power play and cash-in in the first six overs. Banton might just be the apposite choice for Dhoni's team in the season ahead.
3. Jason Roy
One of the proven match-winners for England in the white-ball format, Jason Roy might also interest CSK and a couple of other franchises struggling for a settled opener.
Roy, after withdrawing his name from IPL 2019, will be back in action as a World Cup winner for the next season in 2020. The right-handed opening batsman is one of the few destructive openers going around in international cricket.
He has the ability to blow away an opposition single-handedly and turn the course of the match in no time.
His effectiveness at the top of the order comes from the fact that Roy loves to play his shots and make maximum use of the fielding restrictions in the initial phase of the game.
He has been one of the major reasons why England was able to post and chase huge scores even in the ODIs.
After the Ashes disappointment, the 29-year old Surrey-lad will hope to make a comeback in the white-ball cricket with a possible IPL contract ahead of next year.