Perhaps he was under pressure, or maybe wasn’t. Or perhaps he realized that being an athlete is one thing, but being a captain of a franchise that is an icon of the format is something quite different. There is pressure in both, but there’s a considerable amount of it in the latter. Whatever the case may have been, it appears that Ravindra Jadeja did the right thing in abdicating the CSK captaincy.
But akin to a full toss that can either land straight into the hands of a fielder, when misjudged, or sail over the ropes, the consequence of Jadeja relinquishing the captaincy could too have birthed twin scenarios.
It could’ve led to the appointment of someone else who perhaps may not have been the finest choice (again) to lead Chennai in their next IPL chapter or could’ve gone where it finally has: toward MS Dhoni,
And in handing back the reigns of Chennai’s leadership to the very man who’d reckoned Jadeja would be his natural successor, Jadeja has hit one out of the park.
It’s a smashing six.
It’s much like a spectacle where the home team is happy and so are its fans. MS Dhoni, we know, we’ve seen, is a natural born leader.
Under his leadership, CSK won 121 games of the 204 they played, losing only 82 in the process.
Moreover, MS Dhoni is one of the most profound adjectives of the Chennai Super Kings. The math surrounding him CSK and MSD is pretty simple. It’s a 1+1 = 2, or 1-1 =0.
You take him out of equation, and you can hardly imagine where the CSK would be. Want evidence? Go no further than the contest against the Mumbai Indians that happened nearly a fortnight ago.
So far in this season, Chennai have won just two games from the eight they’ve played; and MS Dhoni was responsible for winning one on his own.
With 17 needed off 6 in what was a nail-biting finish, Dhoni took things into his own hands, smashing a six and then, a four off the third and fourth delivery of Unadkat’s over before hitting another four past the fine-leg to seal the game.
To anyone who would’ve doubted whether the 40-year-old still had in him to win games for CSK, Dhoni offered a characteristically understated answer that reaffirmed faith that he had it all, intact.
But somewhere in here, shuffling between the hits and misses, the pauses and breakthroughs, ever so slight that the latter may have been, there was a growing doubt.
Doubt that one may not see MS Dhoni as a player in the next edition of the IPL. Call it obsessive compulsive disorder that while the ongoing edition of the IPL is anything but over, most of us were already thinking of the next season where Dhoni would or would not have played.
But what Jadeja’s vacating the captaincy post, arguably the biggest cricketing news on April 30, 2022, does is that it rekindle hope of seeing Dhoni taking the field again for the CSK.
Had Dhoni stayed away from ‘playing duties’ for his favoured IPL outfit, there’s little doubt over the fact that he’d have coached or mentored the next generation.
But can anything be more ideal than having a man so highly looked up to leading by an example on the field, instead of directing the next set of actions beyond the boundary?
Surely, it would be a massive buzzkill to see Dhoni stepping away from being a player and captain for CSK’s 2023 IPL season; after all, why’d he accept a stopgap or interim arrangement?
But should he stay on for the next year to captain, wicket-keep and bat, which is now likely, it’ll be a pleasure that can hardly be bettered by any other sight. It’ll be much like the sight where he you glide along with his helicopter stroke fired over the deep mid-wicket boundary. How’s that for a winning six?