Badrinath deserves a better deal

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S. Badrinath missed a game for Chennai Super Kings for the first time in five years. Thursday’s game saw Badri’s 74-match streak snap who had to sit out owing to severe viral flu. The effects were felt straightaway in the brittle run chase against Rajasthan.

Badri’s solidity in the middle was sorely missed. For a batsman who has been shunted around the batting order, Badri still has the numbers to prove he is most solid bet in the middle-order.

Chennai’s three most dependable batsmen have not had it easy this season. Yet Suresh Raina continues to bat at one-drop as birthright while Dhoni carefully chooses the situation before venturing to the crease. At the other end of the axis is Badri who has done the more difficult job.

A sporting strip and early wickets immediately sees Badri summoned for the repair job. The right-hander has done all the hard work and it is unfair to treat the team man this way.

Dhoni would be the first to admit that the team’s dwindling fortunes is directly proportional to his own dip in form.

Raina has been inconsistent averaging 24 in spite of garnering maximum strike. M. Vijay continues to win the confidence of the team management despite an average of 10.75 and strike rate of 92.47!

The ideal scenario in the coming games would be to elevate Anirudha to the opening slot and retain Badri in the middle order.

As coach Stephen Fleming has pointed out on many occasions, there is scope and space for an anchor in this format and the decision to defy Badri a clear role defies logic especially at a time where others have struggled even while having a fixed batting slot.

Badri’s return looks unlikely unless his health improves quickly and the men in charge decide against M. Vijay.

Badri has reasons to be peeved in not being given a consistent position but knowing him, all chaos will be thrown to the backburner and the interest of the team will be in front if and when he gets another opportunity.

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