Three CSK players who are injured for the first IPL 2024 match against RCB

Another player was added in CSK's injury list as Mustafizur Rahman injured his hamstring during the third ODI against Sri Lanka.

Mustafizur Rahman on a stretcher?width=963&height=541&resizemode=4

Even before the IPL 2024 gets underway, defending champions Chennai Super Kings have suffered a big blow as their three important overseas players are injured. Those three players are Devon Conway, Matheesha Pathirana, and Mustafizur Rahman.

The injury list has been concerning for the CSK management as their sqaud strength will be reduced to just 22 if these three do not become available. They have only five overseas players available for selection at the moment. Those five players are Moeen Ali, Rachin Ravindra, Daryl Mitchell, Maheesh Theekshana, and Mitchell Santner.

Let's have a look at the players who are injured.

Devon Conway

Devon Conway has been ruled out of the IPL until May. He is likely to miss the first part of the tournament while his later participation is also in doubt, given NZC might not want to risk him ahead of the upcoming T20 World Cup.  He injured his left thumb during the second T20I against Australia played in February, after which he had a surgery.

Conway's unavailability leaves a big hole at the CSK's top order as he formed a formidable opening pair with Ruturaj Gaikwad last season.He scored 672 runs in 16 matches at an average of over 50 last season. The left-hander played the role of an anchor perfectly. In Conway's absence, Rachin Ravindra is the fronttunner to partner Gaikwad at the top.

Matheesha Pathirana

Just like Conway, Matheesha Pathirana too had a great time in IPL 2023. Pathirana injured his hamstring in the T20I series against Bangladesh. He will take atleast four to five weeks to heal and become available. This means, he will be unavailable for CSK's opening match against RCB.

Pathirana was Dhoni's go-to bowler at the death in IPL 2023 as he executed his deadly yorkers and bowled slower balls perfectly. IPL 2023 gave him some much needed confidence and he made his ODI debut in a few months. His slingy action and high pace reminds of the great Lasith Malinga. Replacing him won't be easy as his replacement Mustafizur Rahman is has got injured as well.

Mustafizur Rahman

Mustafizur Rahman was signed by CSK in the IPL 2024 auction for INR 2 crore. In the absence of Pathirana, Mustafizur was expected to play the death bowler's role. But in the third ODI, he injured his hamstring during the 48th over of the match and became the latest to enter CSK's injury list. The left-arm quick was seen struggling and was taken off the field on a stretcher.

Mustafizur's injury has now casted further doubts in the CSK camp. They don't have any specialist death bowler now. It remains to be seen whether Mustafizur is available to play in CSK's first match on March 22 or not. If not, Chennai Super Kings will have serious death bowling problems. Deepak Chahar, Tushar Deshpande, and Maheesh Theekshana might have to share the reponsibilities in the slog overs.

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All these players are not ruled out of the entire season and are expected to join the team whenever they get fit. Chennai Super Kings will begin its IPL 2024 campaign against Royal Challengers Bangalore on March 22 at M. A. Chidambaram Stadium, Chepauk. MS Dhoni will lead the side.

CSK squad for IPL 2024

MS Dhoni (C) (wk), Moeen Ali, Deepak Chahar, Devon Conway*, Tushar Deshpande, Shivam Dube, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Rajvardhan Hangargekar, Ravindra Jadeja, Ajay Mandal, Mukesh Choudhary, Matheesha Pathirana*, 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 (wk).

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