Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings have both reached the IPL playoffs in 2023 after finishing 10th and 9th respectively last season.
CSK and Mumbai Indians are once again back in IPL playoffs. BCCI Image
Among the teams to qualify for the IPL playoffs in 2023 are the two usual suspects — Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians. With four and five IPL titles respectively, CSK and MI are the most successful sides in the history of IPL. In fact, nine seasons out of 15 completed so far have either belonged to Chennai or Mumbai.
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By reaching the IPL 2023 playoffs, MS Dhoni’s Chennai extended their record of making it to the playoffs for the most number of times — 12 times in 14 seasons. Second, on the list is Rohit Sharma’s record five-time winner Mumbai, with 10 playoffs so far.
An IPL playoff without the two best teams would be such a bummer. Interestingly, it was only the last season that both sides failed to make it to the knockout stage.
Mumbai Indians finished 10th in the table, while Chennai Super Kings were 9th.
Mumbai Indians 10th in Points Table in IPL 2022.
Chennai Super Kings 9th in Points Table in IPL 2022.
CSK & MI qualified into Play-offs in IPL 2023 – What a comeback. pic.twitter.com/s45iaVQjLM
— Johns. (@CricCrazyJohns) May 22, 2023
Nonetheless, they are back in the top four of IPL. While their comeback may not seem monumental given their history, nothing should allow us to underestimate the magnitude of their achievements.
Several factors have led to the turnaround and we take a look at the biggest of them.
Home advantage maximised
IPL returning to the home-and-away format after three seasons has worked in the favour of CSK and MI. Mumbai Indians won five out of seven home games — the only team to do so in IPL 2023.
While the IPL 2022 was entirely played in Mumbai and Navi Mumbai, Rohit Sharma’s side wasn’t able to make full use of the advantage, still adjusting to the realities of the mega auction which took place before the season.
In 2023, five out of their eight wins came at home.
Not just fans; our Paltan is family. #OneFamily. #MumbaiMeriJaan #MumbaiIndians #IPL2023 #TATAIPL pic.twitter.com/fZIJq29Cv4
— Mumbai Indians (@mipaltan) May 22, 2023
This stands true for CSK also. A boisterous crowd at the MA Chidambaram stadium is what the IPL was missing and the return to the Chepauk allowed CSK captain MS Dhoni to control the proceedings the way he likes.
The slow pitches in Chennai has assisted the home spin bowlers with CSK winning four out of seven matches there — the join-second best home record in IPL 2023.
One of the biggest trump cards for Mumbai Indians in IPL 2023 has been the veteran leg-spinner, Piyush Chawla. The 34-year-old was bought for his base price of Rs 50 lakh after going unsold in 2022.
With MI unable to make an impact with their spinners Murugan Ashwin and Mayank Markhande last season, Chawla fitted in perfectly with his skill and experience, taking 20 wickets in 14 matches so far at an economy of 7.81. He is currently fourth in the list of highest wicket-takers in IPL 2023.
A round of applause for the four teams who have made it to the #TATAIPL 2023 Playoffs pic.twitter.com/Lc5l19t4eE
— IndianPremierLeague (@IPL) May 21, 2023
Coming to CSK, it’s difficult to pick one player. A look at CSK’s squad would give you the impression that they still have a lot of issues to sort out, but somehow they have managed to sneak into the playoffs with some of the junior players making an impact.
Pacer Tushar Deshpande has led the bowling attack from the front in the absence of injured Mukesh Choudhary and retired Dwayne Bravo. Taking 20 wickets so far, Tushar has also mitigated the injury issues to Deepak Chahar.
One area where CSK fell short last season was their power hitting in the second part of the innings. The responsibility has been taken up by Shivam Dube who has smashed 385 runs so far at a strike rate of 160. The quick runs have provided a fillip to the team’s campaign.
Rohit and Dhoni’s impact
When Dhoni was asked about CSK’s secret for reaching playoffs 12 out of 14 times, the former India captain gave a very simple explanation.
“I think there is no recipe as such, you try to pick the best players and you try to give them the best slot where they have more chances of performing,” Dhoni said. “You use them in a manner where they have most chances of performing. And at the same time, groom them in the areas where they’re not very strong.”
Moeen Bhai in awe over our way of things! Watch him narrate his journey with the pride this year so far!
Anbuden Diaries new episode out now #WhistlePodu #Yellove
— Chennai Super Kings (@ChennaiIPL) May 22, 2023
In an era of cricket where every decision is made on the basis of numbers and match-ups, Dhoni has a rather simple formula for success. Essentially it’s to stick to the basics.
Rohit in many ways has a similar personality to Dhoni when it comes to captaincy and it’s no surprise that they both successfully managed to turn things around. Working at franchises that have instilled a winning environment, both Dhoni and Rohit have successfully managed to detach the team from last season’s results and make them work on the controllables.
There was no Jasprit Bumrah for MI. Jofra Archer was largely injured. In such a scenario, Jason Behrendorff, Akash Madhwal and Riley Meredith have stepped up with pace bowling, picking 28 wickets together.
Free from the captaincy duties, Ravindra Jadeja has found his mojo back with the ball, taking 17 wickets so far and also scoring 153 runs at a strike rate of 138.
There are other factors as well contributing to their wins. Most of the MI batters have found their form after struggling last season. Cameron Green is growing with every game. For CSK, openers Devon Conway and Ruturaj Gaikwad are scoring consistently.
All these only make MI and CSK more dangerous as they look to write more history.
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Play In Progress
Mumbai Indians beat Delhi Capitals by 7 wickets
Mumbai Indians beat UP Warriorz by 72 runs
Delhi Capitals beat UP Warriorz by 5 wickets
Mumbai Indians beat Royal Challengers Bangalore by 4 wickets
Madhya Pradesh beat Andhra by 5 wickets
Sikkim beat Mizoram by 4 wickets
Thailand Women beat Indonesia Women by 40 runs
Malaysia Women beat Singapore Women by 8 wickets
Malaysia Women beat Myanmar Women by 82 runs
Sri Lanka Women beat Bangladesh Women by 44 runs
Myanmar Women beat Philippines Women by 6 wickets
South Africa Women beat England Women by 6 runs
Australia Women beat India Women by 5 runs
South Africa Women beat Bangladesh Women by 10 wickets
Chennai Super Kings beat Gujarat Titans by 15 runs
Gujarat Titans beat Royal Challengers Bangalore by 6 wickets
Mumbai Indians beat Sunrisers Hyderabad by 8 wickets
Sweden tied with Finland (Finland win Super Over by 2 runs)
Lucknow Super Giants beat Kolkata Knight Riders by 1 run
Norway beat Finland by 7 wickets
Finland beat Sweden by 7 runs
Denmark beat Finland by 8 wickets
Bangladesh beat Ireland by 5 runs
Bangladesh beat Ireland by 3 wickets
New Zealand beat Pakistan by 47 runs
Sri Lanka beat Ireland by an innings and 10 runs
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