The Chennai Super Kings found it difficult to match their “disastrous success” at the IPL 2022 as the defending champions were not “good enough” to win tight matches, coach Stephen Fleming feels.
One of the most successful teams in the Indian Premier League, the four-time champions finished their campaign in the penultimate position, with just four wins in 14 matches.
“There’s been mixed success. We got kind of affected going our way. We had a number of matches that were close, but we weren’t good enough to cross the streak.
“That’s the normal story of the season we didn’t qualify,” Fleming said after CSK lost by five wickets to the Rajasthan Royals on Friday.
The New Zealander added that the team, made up of several new players, had found it difficult to play in the same way as previous seasons.
“When you start a new cycle and you have a number of new players and a new dynamic in the team, it can be tested.
“We’ve had a catastrophic success, so just trying to play the same way, to carry on for the last four years, which has been so successful, is a real challenge.
“To step back and understand what new players can do, it can take some time.” However, Fleming feels that a disappointing season will be a catalyst for players in the next edition of the league.
“We haven’t had two players with such a high level of quality that we can get through those early days, win and gain momentum.
“We had the opportunity to put in a better performance than we did but the truth is that we weren’t able to qualify for the semi-finals and that will be the motivation for next year.” Fleming chose Pacers rookie performers Mukesh Choudhary and Simarjeet Singh among the positives in a lackluster CSK season.
“I think it was excellent. A tense start but we stuck with it and reaped the rewards near the end. It just got better and better. Seamarjet is also responsive to pressure. So, these two boys were definitely positive.”
“The first year of the three-year cycle is a chance to see some of the players. It was a great day to see a couple of players under pressure.” He added that all-round players Moin Ali, who scored 57 balls 93 against RR, and Ravindra Jadeja are key elements of the team.
“Ali was great. He is one of our top players (on Friday against RR) I thought it might be a 250 wicket, but the game suddenly changed midway from our hit.
“But Moein showed us his class with both the bat and the ball and his partner Jadeja making up a major part of the side,” Fleming added.