“The best part about CSK is that they enjoy their cricket, express themselves on the field, and the results automatically follow,” says Prabhu Damodharan. “Each member – be it player or support staff – knows his role and delivers what’s required,” adds the 38-year-old. “And skipper MS Dhoni – what a man! – soaks in the pressure and gets the best out of the team.”
Damodharan, who is in the textile business in Coimbatore, is a big cricket buff. “I love Indian cricket. Hailing from Tamil Nadu it’s only natural for one to be drawn towards the Chennai franchise in the IPL, but then it was actually CSK’s competitive streak that won me over,” he says.
“They just don’t give up, take every match to the finish, stay calm under pressure... as a fan it’s fantastic to see the side do that time and again. I mean, look at our IPL record – Playoffs all eight seasons, six finals, twice champions,” he explains.
Damodharan says he made it a point to travel to a couple of CSK’s away games whenever possible.
“I’ve watched CSK play in Bengaluru and Delhi and it was so much fun. Chepauk is a sea of Yellow in home games, but away, as fans we are the minority, and cheering for our boys out there, it’s a completely different thrill,” he says.
“The two-year absence, he opines, was tough on the fans. “It created a huge vacuum, but credit to our multi-million fan base, we were extremely active as was reflected in our social media handles and CSK was trending both seasons. We are also blessed with a franchise that gives importance to its fans.”
Now that the wait is over, CSK will return to full houses again. “The crowd at the inauguration of TNPL 2.0 at Chidambaram Stadium, where MS hit those sixes, was just a sample,” he quips. “2018 is really going to be big in terms of fan support. I am sure CSK management will build a superb team like they did back then.”