IPL 2018
Stephen Fleming misses Chennai but Looks Forward to Pune
By P - Apr 15, 2018 10:31 am
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Chennai Super Kings, who was banned for two years from the IPL since 2015, has started off well in the IPL 2018 with two heart-stopping victories. In the first match, they defeated Mumbai Indians in Mumbai and kept their fort alive with a win over Kolkata Knight Riders at the Chepauk Stadium. The body blows were struck to CSK after that match as they lost their few players to injuries and also lost their home venue.

Chennai Super King coach Stephen Fleming

The home matches of Chennai Super Kings have been shifted to Pune owing to security concerns. Head coach of the team and a legend in New Zealand cricket Stephen Fleming said their strategy for the performance of the team was prepared by keeping in mind the home conditions in Chennai.

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Before CSK take on KXIP tonight at Mohali, Stephen Fleming said, “We are extremely delighted to have won both are games. The performances have been of great character. Although, the finishes have been tight but such performances turn out to be valuable at the start of the tournament. We sat at auctions to pick a team based on the conditions in Chennai and we are disappointed that we only got one home game. And that was going to be a big part of our strategy this year but we will have to adjust.”

The positive for the Chennai to glean from this development is that Stephen Fleming was the coach of Rising Pune Supergiant in the last season. MS Dhoni was also one of the leading figures in the Pune franchise last year.

Trying to make the most of the prior knowledge about the venue in Pune, Fleming said, “There is the experience of being at Pune for last two years so there are positives. Whether the Pune pitch is same we will have to wait and see. We know characteristics of the ground. It cannot replace Chepauk. We will have to speak to the guys and get them used to the ground as soon as possible, also we have players like Imran Tahir and Deepak Chahar, who have played in Pune,” he said.

ALSO READ: IPL 2018: Match 12 (KXIP vs CSK) – Probable XI

Admitting the void left by Raina’s injury, Fleming said, “We cannot replace him he is the best batsman in the IPL and highest run scorer for us. We just find ways to minimize the loss. We have good players in the setup like Dhruv Shorey, Ambati Rayudu and Murali Vijay, who is backed by international experience. It’s an opportunity for someone else but you would like to see a player like Raina back into the team as soon as possible and make most of his presence,” he said.

Speaking about the prospects of playing in Dhruv Shorey and Murali Vijay in Raina’s absence, Fleming said, “Vijay and Shorey are more adapt to batting up the order. So, even if it’s for a couple of games we might change and then go back once Raina is back. We will reshuffle the batting order and decide on the match day.”