IPL 2020: Ahead of CSK's last game, head coach Fleming reveals they have found 'the right player'

IPL 2020: Ahead of CSKs last game, head coach Fleming reveals they have found the right player
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IPL 2020: Ahead of CSK’s last game, head coach Fleming reveals they have found ‘the right player’

Highlights

Chennai Super Kings (CSK) head coach Stephen Fleming has heaped praise on Ruturaj Gaikwad, saying CSK has found their "right player".

Chennai Super Kings (CSK) head coach Stephen Fleming has heaped praise on Ruturaj Gaikwad, saying CSK has found their "right player".

The 23-year-old Gaikwad had a forgettable start to his IPL journey after he tested positive for COVID-19 ahead of the IPL 2020 in the UAE. Although he recovered well in time, he struggled to find his groove in the initial stage of the ongoing tournament. He scored two ducks in his first three innings for CSK before finally finding the much-needed form.

In CSK's previous two matches, Gaikwad scored two back-to-back half-centuries: an unbeaten 65 against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) and 72 against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), while both the games were played at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium. Even though CSK have been eliminated from the tournament, Gaikwad's performances in the last two games have come as a major positive for the three-time champions.

Gaikwad was the Player of the Match as CSK defeated KKR by six wickets and dented Kolkata's chances of making it to the playoffs.

Ahead of CSK's final game of IPL 2020 that is against Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) on Sunday, Fleming hailed Gaikwad for displaying the spark, which was the CSK side wanted to see in the other younger players as well.

"He has done well in the last couple of games. We're happy that he's taken the opportunity. We look back at the missed opportunities when he got COVID-19. He missed out on the pre-season, he came back after about 4-5 weeks in isolation. We tried to get him involved but he was a long way from being ready. So we're just happy now to create the opportunity and he has shown us that he's the right player," the CSK boss added.

Speaking further about the Maharashtra batsman, Fleming praised Gaikwad's timing and termed him as a fluent player.

"He has got lovely timing, a very fluent player. It allows him to hit the ball in the gaps, a lot of power for a small guy. His net sessions in Chennai before we arrived here were outstanding and we're disappointed that he had to miss the first two or three weeks with us," the former New Zealand captain added.

For the very first time in the history of IPL, Dhoni and Co won't feature in the playoffs. They have 10 points from 13 games. Their next opponents, KXIP, are still fighting to seal a place in the playoffs. After reducing KKR's chances of qualifying, Dhoni and Co can do the same to the KL Rahul-led side on Sunday in Abu Dhabi.

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