Following the win of Rajasthan Royals (RR) over defending champions Mumbai Indians (MI), MS Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings (CSK) have become the first team to be eliminated from the Indian Premier League (IPL). The three-time IPL champions had never finished below fourth place until the 13th edition and were knocked-out early for the first time in the tournament’s history.
The win over RCB took CSK to eight points from 12 matches but they can only achieve a maximum of 12 points if they win their last two games, which won’t be enough to seal a place in the playoffs. MI, Delhi Capitals and RCB are already on 14 points with Kolkata Knight Riders at 12 with three games to go, followed by Kings XI Punjab and RR, both on 10 points each with three and two matches left.
“You have to enjoy the game no matter where you are on the table. If you are not enjoying the cricket, it can become cruel and painful. So I am glad with how the youngsters have responded,” Dhoni had said after his team beat the Royal Challengers Bangalore by eight wickets. Before this edition, the Chennai Super Kings had reached the knockouts in each of the 10 seasons in which it has been part of the IPL.
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CSK had won back-to-back titles in 2010 and 2011, before reclaiming the crown in 2018 following a two year gap. They also ended up runners-up five times. Earlier, Dhoni became the most-capped player in the Indian Premier League (IPL) history and the first player to feature in 200 IPL matches after he stepped onto the field for CSK’s match against RR at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi.
“You do quite a few things, show a bit more emotion (on the happier side) so that the guys feel a bit more confident and relaxed. If you don’t do well, it does hurt and so you amplify a few emotions so that the guys don’t leave the games. We dont really have a chance to make it to the play-offs, leave the mathematical part of it,” Dhoni said. CSK will take on KKR this week in their penultimate game.
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