MS Dhoni

In the high-octane arena of IPL 2024, MS Dhoni, the seasoned campaigner for the Chennai Super Kings (CSK), has once again showcased his prowess as a finisher extraordinaire. Despite his advancing age of 42 years, Dhoni has been a linchpin for the team, wielding his willow with finesse and maintaining an impressive strike rate of 224.48, amassing 110 runs in nine innings.

Acknowledging Dhoni’s invaluable contributions, CSK head coach Stephen Fleming shed light on the delicate task of managing the workload of the veteran cricketer, given his age and the inherent risks associated with extended batting spells.

“We are mindful of his workload. We’ve observed that extended batting stints pose a risk, potentially leading to minor muscle issues. Hence, we mustn’t overlook his impact on the team, even if he occupies the lower order,” Fleming remarked in an interview with Cricbuzz.

Balancing Dhoni’s playing time is a meticulous endeavor for the coaching staff, with Fleming emphasizing the need to tread cautiously to prevent overexertion and potential injuries. The delicate equilibrium between maximizing Dhoni’s prowess and safeguarding his fitness remains a priority for the team management.

Fleming, drawing from his own experience as a former captain, underscored the invaluable influence Dhoni exerts on the squad, particularly in nurturing the burgeoning talent of newly appointed skipper Ruturaj Gaikwad.

“While we possess a capable backup keeper, none can quite match the caliber of MS Dhoni. We aim to optimize his presence on the field, leveraging his expertise in the final overs while also harnessing his strategic acumen to guide the new captain,” Fleming asserted.

Currently, CSK stands at the precipice of the IPL 2024 playoffs, boasting 12 points from 11 games with a commendable record of six wins and five losses, securing the fourth spot in the points standings. As they strive to maintain their winning momentum, the team remains resolute in their pursuit of playoff qualification.

With MS Dhoni’s indomitable spirit and tactical nous guiding the charge, CSK endeavors to navigate the challenges ahead and etch their name once more in the annals of IPL glory.

By Isha Pannu

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