"The greatness of the man" - Shardul Thakur recalls how MS Dhoni's decision-making helped CSK win IPL final against KKR in 2021

Shardul Thakur (L) and MS Dhoni (R). (Pic: Instagram)
Shardul Thakur (L) and MS Dhoni (R). (Pic: Instagram)

Shardul Thakur recently revealed how Chennai Super Kings (CSK) captain MS Dhoni showcased great composure under pressure in the Indian Premier League (IPL) final against Kolkata Kight Riders (KKR) in Dubai in 2021.

In a video shared by the Chennai-based franchise, Thakur spoke about how several members of their side were clueless after nothing was going their way in the summit clash.

He mentioned that while they had registered a total of 192, it was tough to bowl in the second half due to excessive dew.

Thakur mentioned that when KKR openers Shubman Gill and Venkatesh Iyer were batting really well, Dhoni advised Thakur to bring the mid-off fielder inside the circle. The bowler stated how the move paid off as Iyer got out on the very next ball.

He said:

"I don't know what Mahi bhai was thinking, he just sent Bravo to long-off, signalling him to go back. He asked me what I wanted to bowl. I said, you tell me, I am comfortable with whatever you ask me to do."

He continued:

"He told to keep mid-off in the circle. Venkatesh Iyer got the very next ball out, then Nitish Rana got out and we suddenly got the momentum from there. Yes, I bowled well, but again the greatness of the man, to think in such a tense situation also he brought some kind of reasoning and result."

CSK ultimately won the contest to win the championship trophy. Thakur stated that the victory meant a lot to him, considering that his side lost the final to Mumbai Indians (MI) by just one run in 2019.

He added:

"I had my experience of lifting the trophy in 2018. But in 2021 (it) was more special because we also saw the loss in 2019, which was just a one-run loss. So, that hurt us a lot. It was a special year as we were able to turn the tide Not often do you see that a team has lost three games in a row and they make it up from there and win the final."

Thakur was impressive in the final for CSK, picking up three important wickets to help them shift the momentum of the game in their favor.

"I was emotional because I had seen the 2019 loss" - Shardul Thakur on CSK's title-winning campaign of 2021

The 30-year-old pointed out how CSK lost the final against Mumbai Indians (MI) in 2019 by just one run after he got out to Lasith Malinga on the last delivery. He remarked that the burden was finally off his shoulders when they finally emerged victorious in 2021.

The bowling all-rounder expressed his delight at contributing with the ball in the all-important fixture, stating that he was on top of the world after the victory.

He added:

"I was emotional because I had seen the 2019 loss and I was the face of the loss because I was the one to get out on the last ball. It was emotional, and then I felt like there was a burden on my shoulder and suddenly that has gone away now, because I had contributed by taking three wickets. So, I was feeling on top of the world."

Thakur's association with CSK ended after the franchise released him prior to the IPL 2022 auction. He was signed by the Delhi Capitals (DC) for a whopping ₹10.75 crore at the event.

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