As we are reaching the finals of the tournament and the group stages are set to be finished by tomorrow, we can simply say this was one of the most disastrous seasons for Chennai Super Kings. CSK is sitting just ahead of Mumbai Indians at the bottom of the table.
Before the league started, fans were left surprised by an announcement that Ravindra Jadeja will replace Dhoni as the captain of the team reasons citing for Dhoni to shift his focus more to his batting. We were surprised once again by another announcement mid-way through the tournament that Dhoni will replace Jadeja to captain the team.
Now what had really happened to Chennai & Dhoni himself?
Chennai was suffering from back-to-back defeats and was blamed for poor performances from the initial stages of the season, despite having a quite strong squad on paper. During the auctions also they spend a reasonable amount of money on improving their squad. It all started from the mega auction after they ignored Suresh Raina. Suresh Raina was one of the key players in building Chennai to whom they are now. He was part of all the iconic moments that which both CSK & Dhoni were involved. His name Mr. IPL, says it all.
Coming to Dhoni, we can’t say this season was impactful to him as a player & captain considering his previous tryouts. Age is also not in favor of him, but as we say age is just a number. We had seen certain performances in which Mahi showed us who he is & who he was. When in the form he is second to none and we had seen the finisher who really is & why he is famed for. He has slowed down a bit but his out-of-the-park shots are showing no scenes of rest. The Jadeja experiment failed miserably and that made him wear the captain’s band again.
Just as last year, after their last match Dhoni has expressed his desire to be part of one more season. That’s what fans want, that’s what the players want & that’s what the tournament needs. Now the question here is, in what capacity he is going to associate?
His ideal move will be to enter into the scene as a player/captain as he can bring experience & success rate to the table. CSK is desperate in need of a figure like Dhoni himself, so who better can replace him none other than he himself. His captaincy & mentoring skills are still second to none despite showing a slow pace in his batting.
The second option will be to move on to a coach or mentor role. CSK coaching unit comprising of New Zealand legend Stephen Fleming is well acclaimed for all the accolades they had achieved as a unit. The CSK CEO openly claimed that Dhoni is still the decision-maker even before the beginning of this season. So, with his sheer experience and mentoring skills, he will be the perfect fit to combine with Fleming. This combo can train, mentor & nurture the young players and can take time to invest in them and shape their careers.
The next option will be for him to adapt to the role of a brand ambassador for the team since he is the only player remaining to be part of all of Chennai’s IPL expedition since the inception of the league. Who better deserves that post better than the man himself who’d captained them till this season? The name CSK or Chennai Super Kings is not just a team right now, it has been transitioned into a brand.
One thing is for sure we can expect our favorite Thala in the coming IPL season in any of the above-mentioned capacities. From the experiences which we had till now we must accept the fact that “ age is just a number, a form may be temporary but class is permanent”.
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