“The emphasis will be on young fast bowlers for the next edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL),” said Gurunath Meiyappan, the Team Principal of Chennai Super Kings, here, on Thursday.
Speaking to The Hindu, Mr. Meiyappan added, “We will be looking at the West Indian fast bowlers like Ravi Rampaul and Kemar Roach and Australia’s Pat Cummins. CSK is keen to strengthen its bowling department.”
CSK has released eight cricketers, four of them overseas, to meet the BCCI deadline to finalise the list of players the franchise would like to retain ahead of the next season’s trading window and auction.
“The cricketers are Doug Bollinger, Scott Styris, George Bailey and Suraj Randiv, all foreign players.
“Among the Indians, we have released Abhinav Mukund, Sudip Tyagi, Joginder Sharma and Vasudevadas,” said Mr. Meiyappan.
He explained, “Bollinger has done well for us in the past but as I told you we are looking at younger blood. And we could not find a place in the eleven for some of the Indian cricketers such as Mukund. Now they have a chance to play for some other franchise.”
Mr. Meiyappan revealed CSK had $(US) 3.174 million left in its kitty to buy cricketers for the next season of IPL.
“There are some capable young batsmen around too. We are looking at all options. If we do not find the kind of players we want, we could buy back the players we released at the auction.”
Ravindra Jadeja, bought for a whopping $ 2 million ahead of last season, would continue to stay with the franchise, he confirmed. Jadeja’s form for the franchise has been mixed but Mr. Meiyappan said,
“He has the talent to excel. I am sure he would do well next year.”
Mr. Meiyappan, also the managing director of the iconic AVM Productions and Entertainment, dwelt on big ticket players. “You cannot expect the expensive players to come good all the time. There might be days when they would fail. We have to accept that.”
He said, “We are pleased with what CSK has achieved so far.”
CSK is the most successful IPL franchise winning the title twice, making the final twice and reaching the last four stage once. It is also the only Indian team to triumph in the Champions League on foreign soil (in South Africa in 2010).
Mr. Meiyappan believed the two no-balls against Highveld Lions cost the franchise heavily in the recent edition of the Champions League in South Africa. “We won two games and lost close games. And we did make the runs.”
He is confident that the CSK bowlers would breathe fire in IPL VI.