This team may have run out of juice: CSK coach Fleming

Written by Abhishek Patil

The morale in the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) dressing room is at an all-time low, hinted head coach Stephen Fleming as the three-time champions stand on the verge of missing out on the playoffs for the first time in the history of the Indian Premier League (IPL). CSK have so far made it to the top four in all ten seasons that they have been part of the competition but their chances this season are all but over.

A hapless CSK were handed a 7-wicket hammering by Rajasthan Royals (RR) in their 10th group-stage clash on Sunday further putting them on the brink of early elimination.

Fleming said the team management always knew they were going to face issues with an ageing squad heading into the ongoing season after remarkable success in last two years where they made it to the final on both occasions. The conditions in UAE didn’t help CSK’s cause either which has shown in their poor fielding and running between the wickets among others.

“It’s fair to say looking at the table now that this team may have run out of juice. If you’re looking at the three-year cycle – we won the first year; lost off the last ball last year, and we always thought that the third year with an ageing squad would be difficult. And Dubai [UAE] has challenged us with a whole new set of requirements,” said Fleming at the post-match press conference after CSK’s loss against Rajasthan.

Fleming revealed the morale in the dressing room is down and it is unlikely to revive anytime soon with the results not going the team’s way in UAE.

“It’s pretty down (morale in the dressing room) to be honest. We have come close in a couple of games but today we were thoroughly outplayed. We knew it was a crucial game to stay real in the competition. I think there’s an outside chance that we can possibly get through, but when you’re relying on other results and a change of form for your own team, it’s very hard to be upbeat and positive,” said Fleming.

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Abhishek Patil