Will MS Dhoni play in the IPL next year? That’s the question everyone wants to know the answer for. It’s not hidden anymore that the 37-year-old is at the fag end of his career. There are speculations that he might call it time on his international career after the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019.
But will Dhoni continue playing IPL? This very question was put in front of him after the final of the IPL 2019. At the post-match presentation, Sanjay Manjrekar asked him whether we would see him in IPL 2020 or not. Dhoni has always been diplomatic in his answers and he dodged this one by saying, “Hopefully yes.”
The way he performed and led Chennai Super Kings in this year’s IPL shows there is still plenty of cricket left in him. He led CSK to the 8th final from 10 seasons the franchise featured in. With the bat, he was the leading run-getter for the team. The right-hander scored 416 runs from 12 innings at an astonishing average of 83.2 and a strike rate of 134.63.
The focus is on the World Cup right now
He led the side brilliantly once again and stormed into the final. They were well on their way to win the 4th IPL title but unfortunately, Mumbai Indians edged past them in the final off the last ball. When asked about his team’s performance in the league, he mentioned that it wasn’t the perfect year.
“As a team, we had a good season. But we need to go back and reflect on how we reached the finals. It’s not one of those years where we played really great cricket to reach here. The middle-order wasn’t great, and today it was very funny as to how both teams were only passing on the trophy from one team to the other.
“Both teams made a lot of mistakes, the team that made one lesser mistake won. I think the bowlers did really well for us, even today it was definitely more than a 150 wicket. They kept performing and kept getting wickets whenever needed. Whenever they restricted the opposition to a low score, somebody stepped up with the bat, chipped in and that’s how we’ve won most of our games,” said the CSK skipper.
When asked about what needs to be corrected, he replied that his focus is on the World Cup right now. Once that is done, the franchise would look back at the league gone by. But whether he would fit in as a player or a mentor, remains to be seen.
“We have to go to our drawing board, and there is no real-time for that now. We need to go into the World Cup and after that, we need to see the gaps that we can fill. Nothing against the bowlers, it’s the batsmen who need to step up,” added MS Dhoni.
The relationship between CSK and MS Dhoni has grown strong over the years. It’s difficult to imagine the Men in Yellow without Dhoni behind the stumps and marshaling his troops. Whether or not he retires from international cricket, the Chennai fans would dearly love to see him continue playing for the franchise.
Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground, Antigua
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