Batting great Sunil Gavaskar said it was good to see MS Dhoni batting higher up the order at No. 4 for Chennai Super Kings in their win over Kolkata Knight Riders in Mumbai on Wednesday. Gavaskar stressed that Dhoni can only get better with this form if he continues to get game time with the bat in the middle in the ongoing season of Indian Premier League.
Sunil Gavaskar, who had been consistently stressing the importance for MS Dhoni to come out and bat higher up the order, added that the Chennai Super Kings batsman always lights up the mood of the fans with his knocks for the men in yellow. Notably, Dhoni retired from international cricket in 2020 and has been playing only in the IPL ever since.
KKR vs CSK, IPL 2021: Highlights
Dhoni had headed into IPL 2021 with no competitive action under his belt and he looked rusty in the first few outings. After getting out for 0 in CSK’s 2nd match of the season, Dhoni took 17 balls for 18 during their win over Punjab Kings last week.
Dhoni was batting at No. 7 in IPL 2021 but the CSK captain decided to promote himself to No. 4 during their game against KKR. CSK had gotten a fine start with Ruturaj Gaikwad and Faf du Plessis adding 115 for the opening wicket. Dhoni was struggling for timing initially but he hit a Prasidh Krishna delivery into the mid-wicket stands, bringing back memories of the vintage big-hitter.
“It is (special). The whole of India loves watching him bat. He has got something special. The more he gets to bat, the better he is going to be as the tournament progresses. And we will probably see a lot more sixes and boundaries coming off his bat the more we saw him bat at No. 4 or No. 5,” Gavaskar told Star Sports after CSK’s 18-run win over KKR.
Dhoni assessed the situation very well: Gavaskar
Dhoni hit 17 from just 8 balls as he made sure CSK did not lose the momentum that they had gained after Moeen Ali hit a 12-ball 25 following Ruturaj Gaikwad’s 64. Dhoni got out in the 19th over but Faf du Plessis (95 not out) made sure CSK posted 220 on the board.
“He sussed up the situation very well. He realised that more than Rayudu, Raina or Jadeja, he was needed to keep the momentum going. That’s what he did with that little cameo of an innings. He made sure CSK didn’t take their foot off the accelerator,” Gavaskar added.
CSK moved to the top of the IPL 2021 points table with their 3rd straight win of the season. The former champions will face Royal Challengers Bangalore in their final match of the season at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Sunday.