MS Dhoni arrived in Chennai on March 3 as 3-time IPL winners Chennai Super Kings are set to begin preparations for the new season of the Indian Premier League beginning tentatively on 11th April. Batting mainstay Ambati Rayudu will join captain MS Dhoni and a few other domestic stars at a training camp.
Former India captain and World Cup winner MS Dhoni was spotted arriving at the Chennai airport on Wednesday. The Chennai Super Kings captain is all set to lead a training camp for the 3-time champions in the lead-up to Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021.
MS Dhoni has led the Chennai Super Kings to three IPL titles five runners-up positions. (Source: File)
MS Dhoni Will Lead A Training Camp For Chennai Super Kings From 2nd Week Of March While Ambati Rayudu Was The First To Reach Chennai
MS Dhoni was sporting a white t-shirt and a face mask as he was seen sporting a smile while making his way out of the airport. Chennai Super Kings took to social media to welcome their captain for the new season.
Notably, senior batsman, Ambati Rayudu was the first to reach Chennai and he will join hands with his captain along with a few other domestic stars this week in the south Indian city.
MS Dhoni is reportedly expected to lead a training camp for Chennai Super Kings players from the 2nd week of March. Even as the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is yet to confirm the schedule and venue details for IPL 2021 in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, CSK, it seems, wants to get into the groove.
MS Dhoni will be in Chennai along with other domestic players who will be available to turn up for the CSK camp. This will also be the first time he will be seen in competitive action since IPL 2020, which was held in the UAE.
The BCCI is thinking to host IPL 14, which is scheduled to be held between April and June, in six cities. The refurbished Motera Stadium in Ahmedabad is most likely to host the play-offs and the final, while the cities of Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai, Ahmedabad, and Kolkata have been shortlisted to host the league games.
MS Dhoni Scored 200 Runs Averaging Below Par 25 In IPL 2020 As CSK Finished 7th
CSK had organized a training camp last year in Chennai in the lead up to IPL 2020 which was moved out of India due to the Covid-19 pandemic. CSK had gone in with a lot of expectations but they got off to a rocky start with 2 of their players Deepak Chahar and Ruturaj Gaikwad and other members of the camp testing positive for Covid-19.
CSK had to deal with pull-outs of senior players, including Suresh Raina, as their campaign never took off in the UAE. After languishing at the bottom of the table for the most part of the season, CSK stitched a run of wins towards the end to avoid languishing at the bottom of the points table, finishing 7th instead.
MS Dhoni scored exactly 200 runs in 14 matches at a below-par average of 25. Ambati Rayudu fared better scoring 359 runs in 12 appearances averaging 39.88.
MS Dhoni had confirmed during IPL 2020 that he was definitely not going to quit playing the IPL and would continue leading the side in IPL 2021. CSK was expected to make several changes to their squad for IPL 2021 but they retained most players before February’s auction. The franchise released Kedar Jadhav, Murali Vijay, Harbhajan Singh, Piyush Chawla, Monu Singh, Shane Watson(retired).
CSK spent big on acquiring services of England’s spinner Moeen Ali on the board while off-spinner Krishnappa Gowtham got a big contract from MS Dhoni’s 3-time champions. Another notable player that was acquired was Test specialist batsman Cheteshwar Pujara who announced his desire to play limited-overs T20 cricket again.
Chennai Super Kings Squad for IPL 2021
Retained players: MS Dhoni, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, KM Asif, Deepak Chahar, Dwayne Bravo, Faf du Plessis, Imran Tahir, N Jagadeesan, Karn Sharma, Lungi Ngidi, Mitchell Santner, Ravindra Jadeja, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shardul Thakur, Sam Curran, Josh Hazlewood, R Sai Kishore.
Players bought at Auction: Moeen Ali (Rs 7 crore), K Gowtham (Rs 9.25 crore), Cheteshwar Pujara (Rs 50 lakh), Harishankar Reddy (Rs 20 lakh), Bhagath Varma (Rs 20 lakh), Hari Nishanth (Rs 20 lakh).