For “Absolute Genius” MS Dhoni, A Huge Praise From Pakistan

Chennai Super Kings captain MS Dhoni gave another fine example of his leadership skills, marshalling his bowlers and making field standings to conceal the Gujarat Titans’ chase of 173 runs in the Qualifier 1 on Tuesday. While Dhoni branded himself as an ‘annoying captain’, the cricketing world once again bowed down to his intelligence. As fans hailed Dhoni’s genius, especially in plotting Hardik Pandya’s dismissal, even former Pakistan cricketer Salman Butt was full of praise for the CSK skipper.

“What and absolute genius @msdhoni is. Absolutely world class tactician,” Butt wrote.

The ever-so-consistent Chennai Super Kings cruised into the final of IPL 2023 as they beat Gujarat Titans by 15 runs in Qualifier 1 at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai.

Ruturaj Gaikwad starred with the bat as he hit a flamboyant 60(44) to lay the platform. Ambati Rayudu (17 off 9) and Ravindra Jadeja (22 off 16) then played brisk knocks to provide a crucial late flourish and take CSK to a competitive 172/7. Ravindra Jadeja (2/18) and Maheesh Theekshana (2/28) then spun a web around the GT batters with spin, pace, and bounce as a collective bowling effort saw CSK bowl GT out for 157 and cruise into their 10th IPL final.

“You see the wicket, you see the conditions and according to that, you keep adjusting the field. I can be a very annoying captain because I shift the fielder one or two feet here and there every time,” MS Dhoni said in a post-match presentation.

“The fielder needs to keep an eye on me. Imagine you are fielding and every two balls or three balls, I am like, ‘Okay two feet to your right, three feet to your left.’ It can be annoying. I always say I believe in my gut feeling, I see the wicket, the line, what is really happening and more often than not, it pays off. The only request I ask from the fielders is ‘keep an eye on me, if you drop a catch, there won’t be any reactions but just keep an eye on me,” he added.

MS Dhoni was asked if he would be back in Chennai next year after winning his final game of the season at Chepauk and leading CSK to the IPL final. He remained noncommittal on the topic, stating he had another eighteen months to make a decision, but admitted that it had taken a “heavy toll” on him.

“I do not know, I have eight to nine months to decide, the small auction may be around December, so why take that headache right now? I have ample time to decide,” Dhoni said after CSK’s win against Gujarat Titans in Qualifier 1.

Dhoni has had a knee problem all season and was seen wearing a brace after CSK’s final league game. While he hasn’t missed a game, he has struggled to run between wickets.

“I will always be there for CSK, whether that is in the playing form or sitting somewhere outside…I do not really know. Frankly, it takes a heavy toll. I have been out of the home for literally four months. January 31 was when I got out of the house, finished my work, and started practising from the 2nd or 3rd of March. It takes a lot, but I have ample time to decide,” the CSK captain said.

With ANI inputs

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