Thursday, 12 June 2008

News Snippets

  1. New Coach - Next Season???: Though Kepler Wessels joined Chennai Super Kings team pretty late (compared to coaches of other teams), he did a admirable job with the talent available to him. Even Dhoni acknowledged it when he praised the improvement shown by the CSK players during his interview after the IPL finals. If Wessels decides not to commit for the next season, it would be a great loss for Chennai Super Kings team. [News Source: Cricinfo]
  2. Chennai Super Kings Breaks Even: The initial reports on Economic Times suggested that Chennai Super Kings may end up in the red this year. But as Mr. Rakesh Singh [Joint President, Marketing] clarified on his recent interview, Chennai Super Kings has broke even in the first year itself, aided by the surprisingly high collections from merchandising. [News Source: Business Line]

Monday, 9 June 2008

Happy News from Lalit Modi

Yesterday on reading the news that Michael Hussey and Albie Morkel would represent their domestic teams rather than Chennai Super Kings, my hearts sank. But thankfully, Lalit Modi clarified today that the franchises of Indian Premier League would get first priority over players for the proposed Champions League.. Hurrah! Surely a great news!!!

Specifically elaborating on the case of Michael Hussey, who is caught between Western Australia and Chennai Super Kings for the Champions League, Modi said, "In the case of Michael Hussey, Chennai Super Kings has the option to keep him and pay a relieving fees to Western Australia. The option is with Super Kings."

News Source: Cricinfo

Sunday, 8 June 2008

Summing Up - Indian Premier League - Season One

It has been a great first season for Indian Premier League. As a cricket fan and as a fan of Chennai Super Kings, I truly enjoyed it. It was great to watch our team reach the finals. Though we may have lost the finals by a whisker, I am sure we would come back a much more stronger and a much more determined team the next season. But thanks to their great performance of the team, we the CSK fans have kept our heads held high even in the defeats.

Thanks to you all, this leading blog of Chennai Super Kings has had more than 50,000 page views and more than 160 RSS subscribers in the first season itself. [I don't think any other team's fansite would have been able to garner such high support and loyalty]. And I am sure it will only go up in the next season. But what i liked most about this blog is the opportunity to interact with other CSK fans and their views(comments) regarding the team.

Now IPL Season is over, what do you like to do with this blog until the T20 Champions League starts?

P.S: Sorry that I was not able to reply to your comments in the last 2 or 3 weeks. I have shifted to a new place and a new job. So was not able to access the Internet as much as i would have liked. And Gaurav has surely done a great job in the mean time.

Related Posts:

Saturday, 7 June 2008

News Snippets

Million Dollar T20 Champions League announced
Though while the fans of most of the other teams have to wait for a whole year to see their team again, we will see our team competing against the World's best T20 teams in T20 Champions Leage. Finalists of T20 tournaments in Australia, South Africa, India and England would be competing against each other for the title. Most probably, the 4 overseas player rule would be removed but we may still miss the services of Hussey and Morkel due to their domestic commitments.
[Source: Cricinfo]

Gony in Indian ODI Team
Chennai Super Kings' front line bowler Manpreet Gony will be joining the Indian ODI team for the tri-nation Bangladesh series on the back of an injury to Sreesanth. Gony has been one of the major finds for Indian cricket from the recent IPL series.
[Source: Cricinfo]

Financial Performance of IPL Franchisees
This Economic Times article gives a perspective of how good the franchisees were for their owners. Kolkata Knight Riders and Rajasthan Royals are the only teams in the black. Chennai Super Kings made a net loss of Rs. 5 crore. But missing from this analysis is the amount of goodwill generated for each team and the players' valuation, which would put CSK in a better position.
[Source: Economic Times]

Monday, 2 June 2008

Winners All

We may have received the runners-up trophy in the inaugural DLF IPL Trophy, but make no mistake, we played like winners and bowed out as winners should. Cricket was the ultimate winner in yesterday's heart-racing clash between two great teams led by the most charismatic leaders in the cricket world.

All said and done, Rajasthan Royals throughly deserved this victory. Theirs was the fairytale script - underdogs to the core, if ever there were any. But the fact that the match went to the last ball in such a tense finish was sufficient testimony to the fact that both teams were so evenly matched that only the tiniest of differences separated them on the given day.

We can be proud of our team and the way it represented Chennai on and off the field. Not only did we take the fight to the Royals till the very end, we also bagged the Kingfisher Fairplay Award. And we the fans deserve kudos too for several surveys showed that ours was the most cohesive and loyal fan-base out of all 8 teams.

Coming to the game itself, I back our captain when he said we played as a team throughout and lost the finals as a team. It would be easy to point out to certain individuals and certain moments - Balaji's wide ball, Parthiv's mess-up, dropped catch by Raina, Kapugedara failing to get going, but truly the fact of the matter is the entire team fell short by that tiny minuscule margin. It was so great to see the team forming the huddle and Dhoni delivering his few last words just as he had done after the victory in Bangalore at which point Hayden, Hussey and Oram had left the team.

I would say we weren't quite able to up the tempo when we needed it in the second half of the innings. Raina seemed like the guy who could do it, but Kapugedara failed to get going and Dhoni couldn't get too much of the strike. In hindsight, maybe it was the wrong decision to send Kapugedara ahead of Badrinath. With the ball I think we were quite good keeping the pressure on through, except that Balaji had a forgettable night and the pressure got to Murali too. Of course that dropped catch by Raina was a big moment. But after every setback, we fought back with the wicket and in the end it was only a matter of inches that the Royals beat us by.

For the Royals it has to be said that Yusuf was extraordinary. What can you say about such a fabulous all-round performance except that hope he goes on to translate it at the international level ?

The campaign in the inaugural DLF IPL is over. But we shall be back again next year - with a big BANG - and hopefully with that little extra to take us over the line. I am not sure where I shall be next year. It was just luck that I happened to be in Chennai at a time when the IPL came about. And it has been one joyful experience becoming a fan of this team of wonderful players, but more so getting to be a part of the fan club that includes great guys like you all. Through the year I shall keep in touch off and on if anything interesting comes by.

Cheers !

Sunday, 1 June 2008

History favours us

Before the start of Indian Premier League - Season 1, many considered Chennai Super Kings to be the favorites and Rajasthan Royals to be the underdogs. But their roles have reversed now. Today Rajasthan Royals are the favorites to win the Indian Premier League and Chennai Super Kings are the underdogs.

But .Chennai Super Kings can take consolation in the fact that the history favours them. It was Tamil Nadu that won the inaugural inter State Twenty-20 Tournament and again it was Chennai Super Stars who won the inaugural Indian Cricket League. In both these finals, Chennai/Tamil Nadu teams were the underdogs and they managed to spring a surprise. Hope they are able to do it today too.

The MEGA-FINAL - Rajasthan Royals v Chennai Super Kings !

The two best teams in the inaugural DLF IPL will be going head-to-head in what promises to be a mouth-watering, heart-stopping climax. Don't go by the one-sided matches in the semi-finals ! Just think back to the last time these two great teams met in Chennai to remember what a superb game of cricket it was. Here's to a repeat of such a game - with one key difference - the end result !!!

Not only are these the two best teams - they are also the two best-led teams. Warne and Dhoni are the two magicians who will conduct the show. It's one of India's most charismatic and successful limited-overs captain against arguably the greatest captain the World never had !

Rajasthan have truly been a great team - a worthy opponent to face in the finals - unlike say, Punjab, who were more pretenders than anything else. They have given us some wonderful cricket, some delightful memories - the way Shane Warne has led this team has been simply inspiring.

Strengths - Batting order with well-defined roles, Tanvir, Warne, Watson - the best all-rounder
Weaknesses - Will miss Smith, Perhaps the seamers to backup Tanvir and Watson ?

Chennai - we have displayed the one great trait of a champion side - the ability to lift our game when it matters most. We peaked at the start of the tournament, went through a bit of a lean patch but are just beginning to bring our best at the climax. You can rely on the captaincy of Dhoni to handle situations like these.

Strengths - Raina striking some serious form, Dhoni, Morkel - an all-rounder not quite as good as Watson, but a fair competitor, Ntini striking form, Gony
Weaknesses - Opening - remains the Achille's heel of our team, back-up bowling.

League Record 2-0 in favor of the Royals
First game we were blown off by the Sohail-storm, but in the home game we gave a memorable fight. However, Watson did not play that game. But the main backbone of the batting in that game Graeme Smith is out injured, so that could be a huge bonus

Royal Contests
Akmal v Ntini
Asnodkar v Gony
Watson v Morkel
Yusuf v Murali
Raina v Tanvir
Dhoni v Warne

So let's get the party started ! Bring out your drinks, put out your tents and start pouring in your rants and opinions on this mega-blockbuster !

Thank You! Dhoni & Co.

Whatever may happen in today's final against Rajasthan Royals, Chennai Super Kings have surely entertained us in the first season of IPL. They were moments when we were embarrassed... There were moments when the team annihilated the opponents... There were moments when we were elated(four wins in the first four matches)... There were moments of despair(3 Consecutive Defeats)... There were days of great performance... (Hat-tricks, Century, etc...) There were bad days... But we still stuck to the team and the team never stopped entertaining us. Thanks Dhoni & Co. for that... You were really "Fearless entertainers who played to win"

Today you may win the match and capture eternal glory or you may falter in the final hurdle. But just remember that we would be there next year, still supporting and still awaiting another great performance from you. Great going Guys!!!

P.S: It was great to see 150 odd Chennai fans travelling to Mumbai to support their team. When Ottayan predicted that CSK would soon have a travelling fan group, I thought it would happen after 5 or 10 years. Just the fact that it has happened so soon, proves the huge success of IPL. Also it was great to see both Ntini and Dhoni acknowledging the fans' presence in the semi-final presentation ceremony.

Punjab Annihilated, Destroyed, Demolished !!!

We have done it guys ! We have inflicted a humiliating defeat upon our favorite opposition and romped through to the finals in style ! What a momentous and glorious win this is for everyone associated with the Chennai Superkings !

So unfairly written off and labeled as the weakest of the four semifinalists, and then, branded as underdogs we have shown the World that they can take us lightly only at their own peril.

Punjab: Shaun Marsh, Sangakarra both failed, as they were due a failure anyway. No one else stood up, weak middle order, Yuvraj couldn't stand up, as expected. Bowling showed no teeth

Chennai: Ntini who was a bit of a worry, came to the party just at the right time. Gony, as predicted, was superb. Parthiv did a decent job. Raina of course was brilliant.

Was this the PERFECT performance ? Does this leave scope for another perfect performance tomorrow ?

The expressions on Yuvraj's face were precious.

We have shown that rather than putting up a false bravado just keeping calm and going about the job quietly works wonders. Just one more step away from justifying our name "Super" Kings !