A team that was destined for greatness, but never really realizing to its potential, finally meets its calling. The Super Kings decided to make 2010 the year of the kings with twin achievements in the form of IPL and the Champions League.
Every team in the course of such a golden ride, needs a defining moment, Kapil’s blitz against Zimbabwe during the '83 World Cup, the 2001 Calcutta Test against the Aussies.
The pivotal turn in this transformation, dates back to the match at Dharamsala, a do or die game and the Super Kings staring down the barrel with a required run rate around 13 for the last four overs, and the Super Kings decided to make this their own. Captain Cool became a Captain Possessed and his reaction after hitting the winning runs stands testimony to this.
A good cricket team needs to be strong in all the three fronts, batting, bowling and fielding irrespective of the format of the game and one of the contributing factors to Super Kings ascendency to the throne is the marked improvement in the bowling department.
The inclusion of Bollinger and the rise of Ashwin as a frontline bowler along with the willy, ever smiling Murali made a strong second line offense that sealed the fate of quite a few teams.
To put that in perspective, not including the Dharamsala match this team has failed to bowl out a team only twice in its eight T20 outings. A remarkable achievement considering the format of the game. The final against Mumbai where they lost nine wickets and the CLT20 final where the Warriors lost seven wickets were the only exceptions.
Chennai has a charismatic leader in Mahi but the responsibilities as he has often emphasized, does not rest solely with him. In this team, different people have decided to make their own moments at different times, a mark of a good consistent team.
Vijay, Raina, Hussey, Hayden, Badri, Ashwin, Murali, Bollinger, Anirudha, Jakati, Balaji, Morkel, Kemp to name a few - not an exhaustive list and am sure I have missed some - and there are some whose contributions never do come to the limelight.
Good things come to people who wait and the loyal CSK fans of three years finally got what they wanted. This golden ride made memorable with the twin achievements and I am sure all the CSK fans would join me in congratulating this team and thanking them for this memorable event filled ride.