Former Pakistan captain Salman Butt disagrees with the perception that Chennai Super Kings (CSK) captain MS Dhoni is the team’s weak link.
Having retired from international cricket, Dhoni appears to be past his prime. He struggled with the bat in the first half of IPL 2021 as well, failing to time his big strokes. As a result, a few critics have opined that Dhoni’s inability to score quick runs could hurt the franchise.
Butt, though, has a different view on the same. Sharing his thoughts on the CSK's IPL captain on his YouTube channel, the former Pakistan player said:
“If Dhoni is CSK's weak link, every team will want a weak link like him. He can still hit the big sixes. Yes, he has been struggling a bit of late, but that happens with every cricketer. I don’t think he is the weak link in any way. In fact, he is one of CSK’s biggest strengths. Dhoni is the one who built this team and the brain child behind designing Chennai's winning formula. He is he main man for CSK.”
Dhoni managed only 37 runs in 30 balls he faced in the first half of IPL 2021. Last season as well, he looked out of sorts, managing 200 runs in 14 games at a strike rate of 116.27.
You can check out the IPL 2021 orange cap here.
“Jadeja should bat ahead of MS Dhoni” - Sanjay Manjrekar
Former India player Sanjay Manjrekar feels Ravindra Jadeja should bat ahead of Dhoni in the CSK batting line-up. Jadeja batted ahead of Dhoni in the first half of the event as well, so Manjrekar feels the ploy should be repeated in the UAE as well.
“Jadeja should bat ahead of MS Dhoni. I think so (CSK will do well) because their approach has changed, and Moeen Ali and Sam Curran have become impact players, so they should perform better than the last time we saw them in the UAE,” he was quoted as saying in an ESPN Cricinfo report.
Manjrekar also praised Dhoni for demoting himself in the batting order, keeping the interests of the team in mind.
"Really the story of the last half of the IPL was CSK coming to terms with the ageing reality. Working accordingly, they started leaving out the old players and began to use them smartly. Dhoni himself taking that call, and you got to admire that man that on odd occasions he took that call of sending Jadeja and Curran ahead of him when they needed quick runs," Manjrekar concluded.
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Dhoni will be in action when CSK take on Mumbai Indians on Sunday in Dubai, when IPL 2021 resumes. The first half of the event in India was indefinitely halted due to COVID-19 breaches in the bio-bubbles of multiple teams.