Chennai Super Kings' SWOT Analysis: One Big WEAKNESS In MS Dhoni's CSK Can Hurt Them Immensely

Ahead of Chennai Super Kings' first match of IPL 2024, let's look at strengths, weaknesses, opporunities and threats for the MS Dhoni-led side.

Chennai Super Kings' SWOT Analysis: One Big WEAKNESS In MS Dhoni's CSK Can Hurt Them Immensely CSK begin their campaign vs RCB. (Image: ANI)

Defending champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) open their Indian Premier League (IPL 2024) campaign against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) on March 22 at their homeground. CSK are five-time champions and in what is likely to be Dhoni's last season with CSK in IPL, the franchise wants to finish as the most successful franchise in the T20 league by winning the record-making sixth title. In an interview to ESPNcricinfo, coach Stephen Fleming spoke of how the team environment helps this 'Yellow Brigade' find consistency. There is a sense of belongingness to CSK that allows players to feel at home and as a result, they set out to achieve the best results for the team.

Also Read | Team CSK Full List Of Players IPL 2024: Check Chennai Super Kings Full Schedule

MS Dhoni is not a leader who works more on data. While numbers, matchups are important in IPL and T20 cricket, Dhoni drives this team on trust and confidence. He chooses his best XI right from the first match and backs them to the hilt until unless some of them really go out of form or an injury occurs. Dhoni's incredible belief in his team and also understanding what is their weakness and how to cleverly hide it, makes him one of the best captains in this competition. Surely, winning five titles is not a sign of a 'lucky' captain.

Ahead of IPL 2024, CSK look a solid squad again. But they have been hit by a series of injuries while some new players have joined forces. Let's do a SWOT analayis of CSK, looking at their strengths, weaknesses, opportunity and threat. Read on.


Make no mistake about it, CSK's biggest strength is their leader MS Dhoni. A captain plays a huge role in a competition such as IPL and CSK have been lucky to have Dhoni's services right from the start. With Dhoni at helm, what worked for CSK is that they stuck with a core group of players, year after year. The Rainas, Husseys, Rayudus may have left, but Dhoni has found a new core in Ravindra Jadeja, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Ajinkya Rahane, Deepak Chahar, Moeen Ali and himself. The franchise does not like to do choppings and changes. 

Additionally, their batting looks very strong with Gaikwad, Rahane, Shivam Dube, Jadeja, Dhoni in the mix. The fact that CSK will play 7 games at home, they have quality spinners at the helm to bowl on the slow and low wickets in form of Jadeja, Mitchell Santner and Moeen.


In totality, CSK do look a very good squad. But when you use a lens to look into the little details, there is one short coming. There is no Matheesha Pathirana this year which means CSK lack a quality death-overs specialist. If he is not there, CSK will have to make Mustafizur Rahman play. He was bought at the last auction and what a purchase he is already turning out to be. Deepak Chahar, Tushar Deshpande should open the bowling for CSK while Mukesh Choudhary could also be used as an alternative but they all leak runs at the death, which could become a huge worry for CSK in this season. The teams who have hard-hitting batters deep down the order would like to use this weakness as their advantage.


IPL 2024 provides CSK an opportunity to look at new players such as Mustafizur. He has been a huge asset for teams like Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH), Rajasthan Royals (RR) and Delhi Capitals (DC) but maybe his best is yet to come at CSK. Not to forget, Rachin Ravindra is a likely option for CSK to replace Devon Conway at the top. Whenever Conway returns, Ravindra can go down to No 3 if her performs with the bat in the first few games. Ajinkya Rahane, at the same time, is hungry for runs after struggling in the recently-concluded Ranji Trophy. It will be interesting to see how he goes.


What if the tournament is not held in home and away format after the first two weeks of the competition. BCCI secretary has reportedly said that IPL will be played entirely in India despite the Lok Sabha elections. This is good news for teams who prosper in home conditions. But LS elections will go on simultaneously and if IPL, as a result, is played in just a few places, the home advantage could be compromised for some teams. CSK would be hoping they get to play 7 games at least at Chepauk as their squad is built keeping the home and away format in India. This is a huge potential threat for MS Dhoni's men ahead of IPL 2024.

CSK Updated Squad

Chennai Super Kings: MS Dhoni (c), Moeen Ali, Deepak Chahar, Tushar Deshpande, Shivam Dube, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Rajvardhan Hangargekar, Ravindra Jadeja, Ajay Mandal, Mukesh Choudhary, Ajinkya Rahane, Shaik Rasheed, Mitchell Santner, Simarjeet Singh, Nishant Sindhu, Prashant Solanki, Maheesh Theekshana, Rachin Ravindra, Shardul Thakur, Daryl Mitchell, Sameer Rizvi, Mustafizur Rahman, Avanish Rao Aravelly. 

Players injured/withdrawn: Devon Conway, Matheesha Pathirana.

CSK Schedule (Announced so far):

Match 1: Chennai Super Kings v Royal Challengers Bangalore, Friday, March 22, 8pm, Chennai

Match 7: Chennai Super Kings v Gujarat Titans, Tuesday, March 26, 7.30pm, Chennai

Match 13: Delhi Capitals v Chennai Super Kings, Sunday, March 31, 7.30pm, Vizag