MS Dhoni is a brand in Indian cricket that not many come close too. Though it’s been years since the wicket-keeper batter called time on his international career, fans still queue up in numbers to get a glimpse of the iconic cricketer. Ahead of Chennai Super Kings’ IPL 2023 opener against defening champions Gujarat Titans, Dhoni came out for a practice session at Chepauk, with thousands of fans in attendace. As soon as Dhoni walked onto the pitch, the entire stadium roared, cheering for Chennai’s favourite son.
Dhoni is the only full-time captain the Super Kings have had in their stint, barring Ravindra Jadeja who held the position for a brief period last seaosn. Having joined the franchise in IPL 2008, Dhoni has continued going strong wearing the yellow jersey. However, many beleive that the IPL 2023 season could be his last as a player.
Here’s how the crowd welcomed MS Dhoni during a practice session:
The 41-year-old Dhoni, with his bulging biceps and never diminishing flash reflexes, remains a top draw even though his batting prowess hasn’t got requisite return.
Yet, having led the team to four titles and nine finals, his mere presence makes the opposition try to think out of the box. No one knows what to do with the tangibles as much as the man from Ranchi does and in what could be his last season as a professional cricketer, he might still have some aces up his sleeves.
With IPL returning to its familiar home and away format, CSK will get to play seven games at “Fortress Chepauk” this season. After failing to qualify for the play-offs last season, Dhoni, who took back the captaincy from an angry Ravindra Jadeja, would certainly like to go out on a high. If he plans to quit also, one can never be sure about ‘Captain Marvel’.
In IPL, it will always be foolhardy to keep CSK out of contention and this edition will be no different. And with star England all-rounder Ben Stokes in their ranks, CSK will have an imposing look.
With PTI inputs
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