Aakash Chopra's take on the crucial injury hitting CSK's star performer

Aakash Chopra reviews CSK's star player's unavailability and the potential options to replace him.

Aakash Chopra and CSK's players?width=963&height=541&resizemode=4
The defending champions CSK will face RCB in the IPL 2024 opener at Chepauk.

Chennai Super Kings have suffered a setback just few days before the start of IPL 2024. Star bowler Matheesha Pathirana was ruled out of the final T20I against Bangladesh as he suffered a Grade 1 hamstring strain on his left leg. He could be unavailable for the initial part of IPL 2024 as well.

Pathirana suffered the injury during the second T20I of the series and even left the field without completing the spell. As a result, he was also ruled out of the third T20I, which was a decider as well. Pathirana’s absence did not cost Sri Lanka as they won the game comfortably by 28 runs.

Pathirana was replaced by another slingy-arm action fast bowler Nuwan Thushara, who bowled a memorable spell of 5-20 in 4 overs, which included a hat-trick.

Aakash Chopra on Matheesha Pathirana’s injury

Former India opener Aakash Chopra gave his opinion on Pathirana’s potential unavailability for the first few games. He believed CSK might have a few concerns if Pathirana does not get fit on time.

"Pathirana has gotten injured. There is no clarity on his availability but will Chennai Super Kings have a problem because of his injury? They could have slight problems because Pathirana is their main death bowler," Chopra said in a video shared on his YouTube channel.

The renowned commentator argued that CSK might have to rely on Shardul Thakur, Deepak Chahar and Maheesh Theekshana to bowl at the death.

"However, they have got Shardul Thakur now and Deepak Chahar was already there. They got Maheesh Theekshana to bowl a lot in the death overs but they could feel Matheesha Pathirana's absence a little," Chopra mentioned.

Matheesha Pathirana’s injury has come at a worst possible time for CSK. He has been their designated death bowler and had a superb outing last season. He picked up 19 wickets in 12 matches last season at an average of 19.53. Despite bowling his most of the overs at the death, he had an outstanding economy of just 8.01.

Also read: Ambati Rayudu wants big Indian star to take over from MS Dhoni at CSK from IPL 2025

If Pathirana is unavailable, Bangladesh left-arm seamer Mustafizur Rahman could get a game. Pathirana was signed by Chennai Super Kings for INR 2 crore in the auction. Mustafizur is an experienced fast bowler known for his tricky off-cutter.

Defending champions Chennai Super Kings will play Royal Challengers Bangalore in the IPL 2024 opener at Chepauk.

For more updates, follow CricXtasy on FacebookInstagramTwitterTelegram and YouTube.