If you’re reading this blog then there is a good chance that you love to watch and talk about sport. If you’re anything like me then you probably spend a significant part of your life chatting with friends about cricket, football and many other games whether in-person or on social media.
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It used to be that only very few sports fans could earn from their love of the game but now with web 3.0 becoming a reality everyone has the chance to make money by contributing to the debate.
Consider this, when you talk about sport on Facebook or Twitter or any other social media platform or website, the people who make money off your ideas and insight are usually the site owners themselves. When you think about it that’s not a very fair system, they are making the money while you do the work. This model is now universally accepted as simply being “the way things are” but it doesn’t need to be that way.
Web 3.0 is looking to revolutionise the internet and how people contribute and consume content by redistributing money to everyone helps to add that content.
The Hive blockchain is one such project and within the wider community there exists the Sports Talk Social tribe, a group of individuals dedicated to writing and talking about sport. What is more, every time someone in the community talks about sport or reads someone else’s thoughts about it then they can be rewarded using the blockchains native tokens (HIVE and HBD).
How much can you earn?
That really depends on how much you are willing to contribute but I post on average about 3 or 4 blogs a week plus reading and commenting on other people’s blogs and that earns me approximately $2000 USD per year.
Here are a few of my blogs over the last couple of months that have earned on average $40 each.
It’s not a huge or life changing sum of money but for talking about sport (which I would do for free anyway) then it suits me just fine!
How much does it cost to join?
Nothing! It’s absolutely free to join the Hive blockchain
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A couple of big name signings, the return from injury of some key players and you’d hope, an improvement in the form of the existing CSK squad from what was a very disappointing 2022 season should see the 2021 champions competing higher up the table in IPL 2023.
CSK 2022 Review
As the below stats show, CSK underperformed in almost ever area during the 2022 season but perhaps the most significant failures came in aspects of the game which have traditionally been their strong point.
Depth in batting and an ability to finish the innings has always been a key feature of the 2nd most successful franchise in IPL history but the fact that they achieved a relatively modest run rate of 10.2 during the final 5 overs of games shows their struggles in that regard.
Question marks persist over the abilities of MS Dhoni as a batsmen in his own right. Once considered the ultimate finisher in limited overs cricket, the now 41-year-old is finding it difficult to deliver those massive overs at the death quite as consistently as he did in his heyday.
Of course, the argument for maintaining Dhoni’s position in the side has always been that his skills as a captain alone justify a place in the starting XI. It was therefore a very strange decision to replace him as skipper with Ravi Jadeja just prior to the start of the 2022 tournament and one that ultimately backfired spectacularly. Not only did the team’s performance suffer but Jadeja’s form fell off a cliff!
That drop in returns from Jadeja who was such a key player for CSK in 2021 and arguably the best all round cricketer in the game, goes a long way to explaining CSK’s problems in 2022. It’s also perhaps no surprise that the form of the team itself improved during the 2nd half of the season when Dhoni returned to lead the side and that (we believe) is where he will remain for 2023.
Key stats from IPL 2022 season and rank relative to all other franchises
CSK IPL 2023 auction
A potential weakness of the CSK squad for several seasons has been their age and it seems to have finally caught up with IPL stalwarts Dwyane Bravo and Robin Uthappa who will not feature at all in the 2023 season.
Foreign quicks Chris Jordan and Adam Milne also paid the price for some fairly expensive overs during the limited chances they got last season and were not retained.
The major story for CSK at the 2023 auction was their acquisition of Ben Stokes. As a player alone, he will help fill part of the hole that Bravo has left behind although you would imagine that he will bat significantly higher up the order than the West Indian did in recent years and his bowling is likely to be better suited to the middle period of the game as opposed to Bravo who specialised in the later overs.
Longer term, there are rumours that Stokes has been ear marked as the eventual successor to Dhoni. Certainly the England Test captain’s stock is sky high in that regard following an incredible debut season in the role for his country. Availability would surely be the defining factor in regards CSK considering him for the position. Stokes has retired from ODI cricket but with the IPL bleeding into May/June there could well be clashes between earlier Test Matches and the later stages of the IPL in seasons to come.
CSK are well known for favouring a settled squad and so it’s perhaps not surprising that despite their struggles last year they’ve not hit the reset button. The message from the coaching team seems very clear, that this group of players will be expected to perform at significantly higher levels than they achieved in IPL 2022.
Their remaining acquisitions at the auction then were fairly low key (they’d also blown most their budget on Stokes) and included veteran Ajinkya Rahane who will likely be back up for the top order and Kyle Jamieson who will compete for the final overseas spot in the team.
CSK Predicted XI
CSK’s opening pair of Conway and Gaikwad found form in the later stages of IPL 2022 and Chennai will be hoping that they can carry that forward into 2023. For Gaikwad, the expectations last season were incredibly high considering his contribution to the championship winning side a year before. Conway meanwhile continues to be a very consistent run scorer in all forms of cricket. He topped CSK’s averages in 2022 despite playing only 7 matches and will be hoping to be a regular from the off this year.
CSK’s order thereafter is likely to be very fluid and dependant on the match situation and conditions. On paper you’d image that Stokes will bat at 3. The England red ball captain has a fairly average record in T20 cricket however he has always shown an appetite for the biggest stage and as such it’s perhaps not a big surprise that the 2 centuries he has scored in this form of the game have both come in the IPL.
Over a third of Stokes’ IPL runs have come over 4 innings including 2 memorable centuries. CSK will be hoping that he can provide greater consistency in IPL 2023
Thereafter veteran Ambati Rayudu is likely to be carded at 4. The 37-year-old played in 13 of CSK’s 14 matches last year but added just 274 runs with a single half century to his name. His role however is crucial given the abundance of left-handers that otherwise dominate this CSK side. Expect to see him floating up and down the order accordingly as Flemming and Dhoni look to maintain a right hand/left hand combination at the crease as often as possible.
Shivam Dube, Moeen Ali and Ravi Jadeja make up those middle order left handers. Dube has shown glimpses of the talent that has seen multiple franchises bring him into their squads including last seasons unbeaten 95 vs RCB that came from just 46 balls and saw some absolute monster hitting. As alluded to above, CSK desperately need their stroke makers to fire in the later stages. Moeen Ali has at least hit a bit of form in the 50 over game for England while CSK will be hoping they get the 2021 Jadeja rather than what they saw last year when he was burdened with the captaincy.
Jadeja’s returns with the bat were very poor compared to the 2021 season, he also took just 5 wickets and quite inexplicably for one of the best fielders in world cricket, dropped multiple catches in a season to forget
Then comes Dhoni who generally reserves himself for the very later stages these days and while he may not possess the finishing powers of years gone by, there are still few cricketers who can approach pressure situations in quite such a cool manner. His boundary off the last ball to seal victory for his side against Mumbai Indians last season was an indication of what he can still do at this level of the game.
Bowling wise, the return from injury of Deepak Chahar will give CSK significantly more firepower and options particularly in the powerplay. Mukesh Choudhary filled in as best as he could as the leader of Chennai’s attack last year but has struggled for form with his domestic side Maharashtra since then. In as far as local fast bowling options are concerned, CSK also have Simarjeet Singh and Deshpande within their squad.
Mukesh Choudhary was the joint leading wicket taker in the powerplay in last season’s IPL alongside Mohammed Shami
Jadeja and Moeen Ali will give Dhoni the kind of options and match-ups that he generally relishes and the fact that this IPL season is likely to be the first for 3 years that will see teams return to their home stadiums is a major boost to CSK’s chances. The slow, turning pitches at the MA Chidambaram Stadium suit both CSK’s batsmen who are adept at putting up a competitive total and their bowlers who marshalled by Dhoni can strangle the life out of the opposition.
The final spot in the side probably becomes a toss-up between a host of overseas players. Theekshana could offer a third spin option should those home surfaces favour such an approach while CSK may be tempted to play fellow Sri Lankan and Lasith Malinga look-a-like Matheesha Pathirana. Certainly Pathirana’s x-factor and ability to bowl at the death might help to balance the side, while South African Dwyane Pretorius also filled that role at times last year for CSK with his wide yorker bowling at the end of the innings. Alternatively, CSK could unleash the pace and bounce of Kyle Jamieson, particularly when they travel to venues where the surface may benefit his style of bowling.
CSK IPL 2023 Predictions
It’s difficult to imagine CSK being quite as poor again in IPL 2023. We have to assume that there won’t be any late drama regarding the captaincy this year and that a squad who are renowned for their stability will not enter the tournament in a state of flux.
If their top 3 can fire and lay a platform for a middle order that has both strength and depth then they should have sufficient runs this season to make them competitive. At the same time, they lack a significant amount of squad depth as far as the batting is concerned so the form of the best XI indicated above will be paramount.
Bowling wise, the return of Deepak Chahar and the likelihood that they will play half their matches back in Chennai is a major boost for a side that knows how to manipulate those familiar conditions. With the departure of Dwayne Bravo they’ll be looking for someone else to take up the mantle of specialist death bowler. The squad possesses a few candidates but whether they can live up to the high standards set in previous campaigns remains to be seen.
While I think they will still be in the running for a playoff spot for longer than they were last year, I don’t think this CSK side has quite got the firepower to make it to the final 4.
Rishabh Pant has endured a difficult season and despite passing the 300 run mark has yet to contribute a single half century. He comes to the Wankhede, a stadium where he averages in excess of 40 with a strike rate of 170+, with his side needing victory to remain in the tournament. He will however, have to overcome Jasprit Bumrah a bowler who has a phenomenal record against him. Click here for more stats on MI vs DC. Sign-up for free here to get rewarded for commenting on my blog via PeakD.com
KKR have the worst run-rate and are losing on average more wickets than any other team in the powerplay this season. The fact that they are still mathematically still in with a chance of a playoff place speaks of how good their middle order and bowlers have been this year. Click here for more stats on KKR vs LSG. Sign-up for free here to get rewarded for commenting on my blog via PeakD.com
It’s somewhat surprisingly that these 2 long serving players haven’t faced each other more in IPL cricket but their head to head today will be crucial given the weakness and inexperience of the Mumbai batting line-up. From the 2nd half of the innings against KKR to the first part of the game against CSK, MI managed to lose 10 wickets for 77 runs in a 15 over spell. Even with their change in fortune in recent games, another batting collapse seems only just around the corner and much will rest on the shoulders of captain Rohit Sharma if he is to help his team avoid finishing last in the table for the first time in their history. Click here for more stats on MI vs SRH. Sign-up for free here to get rewarded for commenting on my blog via PeakD.com
Bairstow helped PBKS secure the highest powerplay score of IPL 2022 in their previous match. How might DC look to limit him here today? Traditionally left-arm spin has been the way to go with Bairstow averaging just 25 with S/R of 119 against it although his record against Axar Patel is better. In general there are a few key match-ups between the spinners and batting line-ups on both teams and the side that is better able to exploit those could well win here today. Click here for more stats on PBKS vs DC. Sign-up for free here to get rewarded for commenting on my blog via PeakD.com
Sunil Narine has taken just 8 wickets in IPL 2022 but he is one of only 2 bowlers to bowl more than 20 overs this season and maintain an economy rate of under a run a ball (the other being Mohsin Khan). In this game he’ll need to control Rahul Tripathi who has shown he is one of only a few batsmen in the IPL to be able to score quickly off Narine without losing his wicket. Click here for more stats on KKR vs SRH. Sign-up for free here to get rewarded for commenting on my blog via PeakD.com
Kieron Pollard (592 career matches) vs DJ Bravo (531 career matches) see the 2 players who have played more T20 cricket in the history of the format go head to head. Both are in the autumn’s of their career and it may yet be that this is the last time they meet each other in the IPL should one or both franchises decide that they need to freshen up their options following a miserable season. For his part DJ Bravo is still an effective wicket taker at the death with 11 victims this season making him the joint highest in that phase of the game in IPL 2022. Meanwhile, Pollard has the lowest death over strike rate (126) of any batsman in IPL 2022 to have faced more than 7 overs in that phase. Whose time might be up in the IPL? Click here for more stats on CSK vs MI. Sign-up for free here to get rewarded for commenting on my blog via PeakD.com
2 players with a wealth of experience go head to head in this match with Ashwin so far having the better of things against David Warner. In fact, in comparison to Warner’s T20 stats vs right-arm spin in general (average 54, strike rate 131) then Ashwin has done remarkably well where so many others have failed. Warner has hit 4 of DC’s scores of over 50+ this season with another 2 being made by Prithvi Shaw who has not featured in the last 2 games. Getting Warner early then could be a defining moment in the outcome of this match. Click here for more stats on RR vs DC. Sign-up for free here to get rewarded for commenting on my blog via PeakD.com
Krunal Pandya is regularly batting in the number 4 spot coming in behind Deepka Hooda at number 3. It’s tempting to think that for both players that’s at least a spot too high and if GT can take early wickets against LSG then they might yet have the match-ups throughout the innings including between Shami and Pandya and later Rashid Khan and Stoinis to limit their scoring. Click here for more stats on LSG vs GT. Sign-up for free here to get rewarded for commenting on my blog via PeakD.com
Andre Russell just can’t stop taking wickets at the moment with his 12 so far this season coming at an incredible rate of once every 9 balls! However, he’s been trying to get MI captain Rohit Sharma out for a long time in T20 cricket and is yet to be successful. Rohit has shown glimpses of good form this year but it’s still 12 months and counting since he last hit an IPL half century. Could this be the match? Click here for more stats on MI vs KKR. Sign-up for free here to get rewarded for commenting on my blog via PeakD.com