IPL 2019: Chennai Super Kings scout for Lungi Ngidi’s replacement

IPL 2019: Chennai Super Kings scout for Lungi Ngidi’s replacement

CSK will feel pinched with the absence of Ngidi leaving them with a very thin line of frontline fast bowlers.

Lungi Ngidi
Chennai Super Kings’ Lungisani Ngidi celebrates fall of Rishabh Pant’s wicket. (Photo by Surjeet Yadav/IANS)

The 2019 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) is upon us and the most popular T20 tournament in the world will begin on Saturday, March 23 and will see the defending champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) battle it out in the opening match at MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai.

However, even before the tournament has started, injuries have struck down a fair number of players. Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) have lost Anrich Nortje, Shivam Mavi and Kamlesh Nagarkoti to injuries and Chennai Super Kings (CSK) lost their South African quick Lungi Ngidi to a side strain.

Ngidi had made his debut in IPL 2018 and impressed one and all with 11 wickets. He was to play a big part in CSK’s title defense this year but suffered a side strain in South Africa’s ODI series against Sri Lanka and has been ruled out for at least four weeks. He will be undergoing a rehabilitation process ahead of the World Cup.

CSK looks for alternate options

“Lungi felt discomfort while bowling during the last ODI against Sri Lanka at Newlands and immediately stopped bowling. Further scans revealed a Grade II muscle strain which will need up to four weeks of rest followed by a rehab program leading up to the World Cup,” South Africa team manager Mohammed Moosajee was quoted as saying by India Today.

CSK will feel pinched with the absence of Ngidi leaving them with a very thin line of frontline fast bowlers. Their choices of frontline fast bowlers are Deepak Chahar, Mohit Sharma, Shardul Thakur, with David Willey of England and Dwayne Bravo being the fast bowling all-rounders.

This leaves CSK having to fend for a replacement. “Ngidi will be missed. We are in the process of identifying a replacement,” CSK’s CEO KS Viswanathan was quoted saying.

Chennai Super Kings had come back from a two-year ban in IPL 2018 and had to shift from their home venue of Chennai to Pune only after one match due to Cauvery Water Dispute and still went on to win the tournament and lift the title for the third time.

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