Four years after quitting international cricket Dhoni remains the league’s most popular player, his presence guaranteeing impressive support for Chennai even away from home.
Dhoni has reinvented himself as a lower-order power-hitter to remain effective despite being well past his prime.
Media reports say it could be Dhoni’s last IPL season but the wicketkeeper-batsman remained coy about his future after overseeing Chennai’s progress to Sunday’s final in Ahmedabad.
“I don’t know, I have eight to nine months to decide, the small auction may be around December, so why take that headache right now?” Dhoni said after Chennai beat champions Gujarat Titans in Tuesday’s qualifier.
“I have ample time to decide.”
The former India captain, who led the side to two World Cup titles, has been hampered by knee issues this season and wore a brace in the match against Gujarat. “I will always be there for CSK, whether that is in the playing form or sitting somewhere outside … I don’t really know,” Dhoni said.
“Frankly, it takes a heavy toll. I have been out of home for literally four months … It takes a lot, but I have ample time to decide.”
Dhoni is known for his astute leadership, ice-cool temperament and innovative field placements but he described himself as an “annoying” skipper.
“I can be a very annoying captain because I shift the fielder one or two feet here and there every time,” he said.
“Imagine you are fielding and every two balls or three balls, I am like, ‘Okay two feet to your right, three feet to your left.’ It can be annoying.”
“The only request I ask from the fielders is ‘keep an eye on me. If you drop a catch, there won’t be any reactions but just keep an eye on me.'”
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