There will be no dip in M.S. Dhoni’s form when the glitzy Indian Premier League (IPL) caravan touches base in the UAE, feels former India batsman Sanjay Manjrekar.
Manjrekar also said he had a chat with the iconic former India captain on the sidelines of current skipper Virat Kohli’s wedding, and the dashing wicketkeeper batsman had said as long as he is outrunning the fastest man in the Indian team, he will continue playing.
Dhoni will lead Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in the 13th edition of the cash-rich league which will be played in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah after it was postponed in March due to the COVID-19 crisis. The 39-year old has not been in action since the 2019 World Cup semi-final where India lost to New Zealand.
Speaking on Star Sports’ show Cricket Connected, Manjrekar said: “I think he is going to be very good and one of the reasons that he is so successful and so consistent in the IPL as a batsman as opposed to international is that he knows that there are about four to five bowlers to handle.
“And there are some good ones and there are some not so good ones in the IPL. In international, you have got five quality bowlers, so he’s so good at picking out those guys and going after them.
“And with people like (Sachin) Tendulkar, Dhoni, these are champion cricketers. Once they are on the public stage, you will never see Dhoni ever on a public stage, like a cricket field, looking slightly unfit or unable to sprint or run.”
Manjrekar said he caught up with Dhoni during Kohli’s wedding and the Ranchi man was oozing confidence.
“During Virat Kohli’s wedding, I had a little corner time with him and he said that as long as I am beating the fastest sprinter in the team, I am going to consider myself fit enough to be playing international cricket or playing high-level cricket.
“So, as a batter, with M.S. Dhoni in the IPL, I don’t see much difference. In fact, the conditions that we have, I keep saying, is just perfect for Dhoni, where it’s going to be about the mind and not just power hitting.”
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