The first match of IPL 2022 is just three days away now and one of the teams has been dealt with a major blow ahead of the tournament opener. As the curtain-raiser of the 15th edition of the tournament is set to be played between Chennai Super Kings and Kolkata Knight Riders, CSK will have to take the field without one of their main players.
Moeen Ali has been ruled out of the opening game of IPL 2022 due to a visa delay. The England all-rounder has failed to report to the CSK camp due to some visa issues in his country and thus will miss the opening game of the season. Notably, Ali was one of the four retained players of CSK ahead of the IPL 2022 Mega Auction and was set to take the No. 3 slot for the defending champions.
Moeen Ali set to miss opening game of IPL 2022
— SportsTiger (@sportstigerapp) March 23, 2022
Who will play at No. 3 for CSK?
With Moeen Ali not available, the obvious question that arises is who will take the No.3 spot in Ali’s absence. As there are not many contenders to take up that spot, Robin Uthappa looks like the ideal replacement. Uthappa has a lot of experience batting at No. 3 and thus will be the first choice of MS Dhoni to come one down.
Ali’s absence is a big blow for CSK as the England all-rounder was fulfilling two roles successfully. Apart from taking the attack to the opposition, Ali was also delivering three to four overs of spin. He was complimenting Ravindra Jadeja really well. Now, with him not available for the tournament opener, CSK will have to play a good spinner as well.
What will CSK’s bowling line up look like in first game?
MS Dhoni and Co. will take the field against KKR without some prominent faces. Apart from Moeen Ali, CSK will also miss the services of their frontline bowler Deepak Chahar. The pacer is not available for a few games early in the tournament posing a challenge for MS Dhoni to form a potent attack in his absence. Dhoni will rely on Bravo, Jadeja, Chris Jordan, and KM Asif to do the job for him with the ball. Shivem Dube will also have a role to play.