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MS Dhoni reaches out to Faf du Plessis for advice during games, their post-match talks go on for hours: Ruturaj Gaikwad

MS Dhoni (L) and Faf du Plessis (PC: Twitter)
MS Dhoni (L) and Faf du Plessis (PC: Twitter)
SENIOR ANALYST

Chennai Super Kings (CSK)'s promising opener Ruturaj Gaikwad has shared details about the bond between the team's skipper MS Dhoni and Faf du Plessis.

Ruturaj Gaikwad said the revered duo often exchange suggestions both on and off the field, with their post-match chats sometimes continuing for hours.

Considered one of the most astute brains in the game, MS Dhoni and Faf du Plessis have played almost 11 years of IPL together.

Ruturaj Gaikwad himself was surprised by the fact that even after so long, their discussions regarding the game hadn't withered a bit.

"Their bond is very good because they both respect each other a lot. Often they have discussions after the match where Faf reaches out to MS Dhoni with suggestions. Even at this stage [of their careers], they have very good discussions. And it's not like they discuss for 5-10 minutes, their talks go for an hour or even 2 hours sometimes. They also have discussions every day in practice. A lot of times, even Mahi bhai reaches out to Faf during the match to ask for his advice," Ruturaj Gaikwad told India TV.

MS Dhoni and Faf du Plessis derive a similar admiration from their respective country's public.

While Dhoni has won all the important trophies and titles for India, Du Plessis has been praised for keeping the 'Protea fire' going through South African cricket's most difficult phases.

Retired players' attachment to CSK help them perform for the team: Ruturaj Gaikwad

Chennai Super Kings finished 2nd in the first half of IPL 2021
Chennai Super Kings finished 2nd in the first half of IPL 2021

Often lampooned with the phrase 'Dad's army', CSK have made it a habit of punching above their weight in the IPL.

Except for last season, the MS Dhoni-led outfit has always shown the way for other teams with their consistency and skills, despite playing with half-a-dozen internationally retired players.

Ruturaj Gaikwad believes the seniors take inspiration from their emotional attachment to the franchise and work even harder than the youngsters.

"I think all internationally-retired players are emotionally attached to the CSK fans, players and the management. As everyone knows, the last season wasn't that good for CSK. So, for example, Ambati Rayudu came to CSK's pre-season camp. He spent a lot of time in the nets, in fact, even more than me. He never missed a single day of practice.
"So, I think all the 30+ players who have retired from international cricket are very emotionally attached to CSK. They know what happened last year was unprecedented and so all of them are determined to perform in each and every game in 2021. So, I think no matter if you are playing or not, if you have the passion for a franchise or the captain, you will work hard and the results follow," Ruturaj Gaikwad said.

Openers Faf du Plessis and Ruturaj Gaikwad were instrumental in CSK's success in the first half of IPL 2021.

While Du Plessis amassed 320 runs at a stellar average of 64, Gaikwad followed him with 196 runs.

Edited by Arjun Panchadar
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