The genuine all-rounders are the pride of cricket. A team with a couple of all-rounders would look different in the eyes of the opponents who lack such privileges. It is as if an unfair contest between two teams, one with 11 players up against the other with 13 players.
The game of cricket has been lucky to be blessed with so many past all-rounders of the calibre of Sir Gary Sobers, Alan Davidson, Sir Richard Hadlee, Sir Ian Botham, Kapil Dev, Imran Khan, Jacques Kallis, Shaun Pollock, Sanath Jayasuriya, Shahid Afridi and Lance Klusener, to name a few.
A genuine all-rounder is one who has the ability change the course of a match either with the bat or the ball. Again, a genuine all-rounder would find a place in any team with one of his skills alone that is to say, purely as a batsman or purely as a bowler. Another giveaway for a genuine all-rounder is the fact that such all-rounders are invariably natural athletes and terrific fielders. The all-rounders are the jewels in the crown of the game.
There is a distinct difference between a genuine all-rounder like a Shakib Al Hasan and a bits-and-pieces player like our own Kedar Jadhav. Of course, bits-and-pieces players have their own role to play in cricket but are not as influential as a genuine all-rounder.
The role of an all-rounder in a T20 match assumes greater significance. In the past, so many quality all-rounders like Albie Morkel, Jacob Oram, Scott Styris, and Andrew Flintoff had represented the Chennai Super Kings team.
The present CSK team is lucky to have 5 genuine International all-rounders in white ball cricket in their ranks. The presence of these all-rounders gives them a distinct advantage over the other teams. There is a possibility that CSK might field all their 5 all-rounders in the playing XI.
This article is about those 5 CSK all-rounders who will be on display in IPL 2019.
#5. Mitchell Santner
T20 International career
Matches – 31, Runs – 197, SR – 123, wickets taken – 34, Economy – 7.27
Matches – 65, Runs 739, SR – 127, wickets taken – 65, Economy – 7.05.
The Kiwi all-rounder Mitchell Santner looks all set to make his IPL debut this season. He can be termed as an established all-rounder in ODIs and an upcoming all-rounder in T20 matches.
Santner is basically a bowling all-rounder who has the ability to contribute effectively with the bat. Nonetheless, he is an all-rounder in the true sense. In the past, he has shown his skills with the bat scoring some crucial runs for New Zealand down the order.
Santner would be looking forward to his first IPL season.
#4. David Willey
Matches – 27, Runs – 166, SR – 132, Wickets taken – 34, Economy – 8.19
Matches – 174, Runs – 2559, SR – 140, Wickets taken – 166, Economy – 7.86
David Willey is a fast bowling all-rounder in the current CSK team. In IPL 2018, CSK opted for David Willey as a replacement for the injured Kedar Jadhav. This year they retained him at the cost of Mark Wood.
In IPL 2018, Willey played in only 3 matches for CSK and took 2 wickets. He didn’t get to bat in those matches.
The left-hander has contributed with the bat in Franchise cricket all over the world whenever he has been promoted up the order. He might not get that opportunity with such a strong side like CSK, but he could bring the much-needed variety in CSK’s bowling with his left-arm fast medium bowling.
David Willey’s current form has been excellent. In the recent third T20I against the West Indies, he had figures of 3-0-7-4. He took the first 4 wickets of the West Indies batting line-up inside his 3 overs. He took 6 wickets in the three-match T20I series at an economy of 6.
With the likely absence of Lungi Ngidi for a few matches for CSK, David Willey would get his opportunity this year.
#3. Shane Watson
Matches – 58, Runs – 1462, SR – 145, Wickets taken – 48, Economy – 7.65
Matches – 298, Runs – 7777, SR – 139, Wickets taken – 216, Economy – 7.90
Shane Watson is the exact definition of a genuine all-rounder. He often opens the batting as well as the bowling for his team. He is a terrific fielder too. The Chennai Super Kings were lucky to grab him in the IPL auction 2018 for a throwaway price. He justified his selection by becoming the second highest run-scorer for CSK after Ambati Rayadu in the last season.
This year, Watson was in excellent form playing for Sydney Thunders in Big Bash 2018. He scored 344 runs in 14 matches.
He would be an important player for CSK in IPL 2019 if he remains fit.
#2. Ravindra Jadeja
Matches – 40, Runs – 116, SR – 94, Wickets taken – 31, Economy – 7.27
Matches – 212, Runs – 2147, SR – 123, Wickets taken – 135, Economy – 7.78
Ravindra Jadeja is the spin-bowling Indian all-rounder in the CSK team. CSK have kept a lot of faith in Jadeja by retaining him twice before. He has also lived up to the expectations with his tight bowling, electric fielding and lusty hitting at the death.
In IPL 2018, when CSK needed 4 runs in 2 balls against KKR, Jadeja deposited Vinay Kumar into the crowd to take his team home. In the first qualifier against SRH at Mumbai, Jadeja returned with excellent figures of 4-0-13-1. He took the crucial wicket of Manish Pandey.
Again, in the finals against the same opponent, the left-hander contributed with the wicket of Shikhar Dhawan. He had an excellent bowling economy rate of 7.39 in IPL 2018. In batting, he remained not out on 5 of the 10 occasions that he got to bat.
Being a left-hand batsman like Mitchell Santner and David Willey, Jadeja also brings in the variety in batting.
Jadeja would be a regular member in the playing XI of CSK in IPL 2019.
#1. Dwayne Bravo
Matches – 66, Runs – 1142, SR – 116, Wickets taken – 52, Economy – 8.46
Matches – 437, Runs – 6218, SR – 127, Wickets taken – 477, Economy – 8.27
Dwayne Bravo is the most experienced T20 all-rounder in the world. He has played the most number of T20 franchise cricket and is the highest wicket-taker in that format. Even after his retirement from International cricket, Bravo is still active playing franchise cricket all over the world.
In Big Bash League 2018, he took 15 wickets at an economy of below 8. For CSK, Bravo has been a consistent performer with both bat and ball. Playing for CSK, he has scored 847 runs at a strike rate of 137.
He is the leading wicket-taker for CSK in the current team with 93 wickets. He is at the brink of completing the double of 1000 runs and 100 wickets for the Chennai based franchise this season. In fact, he would be the first player to do so for CSK in IPL history.
The CSK fans would be looking forward to Dwayne Bravo’s rare feat along with his crazy celebrations.