MS Dhoni
MS Dhoni Credits: Twitter

The incident took place during the third ball of the last over when MS Dhoni refused to give Daryl Mitchell a single in Chennai Super Kings’ home game against Punjab Kings in the IPL 2024.

Asked to bat first, the hosts could put up 162/7 in their allotted 20 overs. The opponents easily chased down the target with 13 balls to spare, and seven wickets in hand. MS Dhoni smashed 14 balls in 11 balls, with the help of one boundary and one six.

‘MS Dhoni hit a six but the runs were never going to be enough’- Aakash Chopra

Chennai Super Kings were struggling at 149/6 after 19 overs. After a wide on the first ball of the final over of Arshdeep Singh, MS Dhoni smashed the left-arm bowler for a four-over wide of the extra-cover region. The next ball was a dot, before another wide delivery.

On the third delivery, Dhoni powered the low full-toss to the extra-cover fielder. Daryl Mitchell rushed for the six, and by the time he was near the batting end, Dhoni was screaming at Mitchell to return, and the Kiwi all-rounder almost ran two runs.

Reflecting on the batting display of the defending champions, Aakash Chopra showed surprising signs towards the batting position of Mitchell and the refusal of singles in the last few balls of the innings from MS Dhoni.

‘Daryl Mitchell wasn’t sent. It was totally beyond my understanding what Chennai were trying to do. They called Sameer Rizvi in the form of an impact player.’ The former India opener said on his YouTube channel. ‘But they didn’t et Daryl Mitchell to bat. He scored a half-century in the last match. They didn’t get him to bowl also. Extremely strange.’

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‘In the end, Dhoni even refused to take a single. It’s fine but Daryl Mitchell is Daryl Mitchell. You were not batting with Mustafizur, no disrespect, but he refused.’ Chopra added. ‘He hit a six but the runs were never going to be enough, and that’s exactly how it panned out.’

Irfan Pathan was in the Hindi commentary box when the incident took place. He too showed frustrating signs toward the move. It was the 2016 season when playing for the Rising Pune Super Giants (RPS) against the Kolkata Knight Riders at the Eden Gardens, MS Dhoni did the same ‘single refusal’ with the former India all-rounder.

Dhoni guided the ball towards the point and looked for a quick single. Even though Pathan wasn’t ready, he was almost pushed to give up his wicket.

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‘I am against this (single refusal by a batter). The second boy too has come to play. The second boy too can score runs.’ The veteran remarked. ‘It’s a team game. The second boy too can do his job.’

With their fifth defeat of the season, Chennai Super Kings are at the number four position in the points table with 10 points at a net run rate of +0.627.