The Chennai Super Kings (CSK) team and their legendary leader, MS Dhoni, are back home for the last time in the IPL 2023. On Tuesday, they will play the defending champions and table-toppers Gujarat Titans in Qualifier 1 at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai. If either team wins, they will go right into the IPL 2023 Final on Sunday.
It has been an amazing journey for Dhoni, who has been dealing with a knee injury since the first day of the event. Despite this, he has led his team, which finished last season at the bottom of the table, back into the playoffs. In fact, CSK, which is led by Dhoni, has kept the same record, playing 12 in nine of their games, which is the most of any team in the IPL 2023. GT, which is second-best and a long way behind, has done this only four times.
Michael Hussey, the hitting coach for CSK, said after their last match against the Delhi Capitals, which Dhoni’s team won easily to secure a spot in the playoffs, that their captain is not 100% fit and is “managing” himself.
“MS Dhoni’s knee isn’t 100% right now, so he’s taking care of himself by only batting in the last two or three overs. Hussey said, “He can’t run as fast as he used to, but he’s doing the right things and hitting the ball really well.”
Devon Conway and Ruturaj Gaikwad, who bat first for CSK, said that Dhoni’s knee was fine and that they would like to see their captain play for at least five more years. “He has played cricket a lot and is very well liked. In a video shared by the IPL, Conway told his opening partner Gaikwad, “If a person of that magnitude has your support and you know he believes in you, it gives you so much confidence as a player.”
“Mahi bhai is a great addition to our group. We hope this won’t be his last season. He is good for at least five more years.” His knee is fine,” he said.
For almost the whole season, Dhoni has had knee problems, and he has often been seen with a wrap or an ice pack on his knee. There have been rumors that Dhoni’s last IPL season might be this one, but the CSK leader has made it sound like he might come back for IPL 2024.
In IPL 2023, the CSK captain has a strike rate of 190.74 and an average of more than 50, even though he bats last. It remains to be seen if Dhoni will be able to take himself and his team through two more matches and lead CSK to a fifth IPL title.