Chennai Super Kings return to IPL, now fans want MS Dhoni back in team
Chennai Super Kings fans were on Cloud Nine after the Board of Control for Cricket in India welcomed back the two-time champions into the Indian Premier League fold on Friday. No sooner did the news break, CSK fans were already eyeing MS Dhoni back as their team’s captain from the 2018 edition.
Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals returned to the IPL fold after serving a two-year ban for corruption. A Supreme Court panel found CSK and RR team officials guilty of betting during 2013 IPL matches.
Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals, both past winners, broke the hearts of millions of fans when their team owners Gurunath Meiyappan (CSK) and Raj Kundra (RR) were found guilty of betting by a panel constituted by the Supreme Court.
Gurunath Meiyappan is the son-in-law of former BCCI president N. Srinivasan while Raj Kundra is the husband of Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty. Both were team owners.
CSK had some of India’s most popular stars in their ranks. Prominent among them were MS Dhoni, who had led the side from 2008, when the IPL started. After CSK were banned and players were sent back to auction, MS Dhoni was snapped by Rising Pune Supergiant.
Dhoni led RPS for a season and was replaced by Steve Smith in IPL 2017. Dhoni did not have the best of times at Pune and CSK will be happy to get him back when the auctions happen in 2018.
According to George John, one of the directors of Chennai Super Kings Cricket Limited, which runs the team, “The ban is officially over. It is good that we are back. As far as possible we will try to retain the players and support staff we had.”
“We have to see what the BCCI has to offer. If there is an option of retaining of a player, it would be him (Dhoni). We haven’t spoken to Dhoni yet as his contract with Pune ends later this year. However, we will speak to him as and when we make our plans for the next season,” he added.
Not only MS Dhoni, CSK will try to secure India’s top limited overs players like Ravindra Jadeja, Suresh Raina and Ravichandran Ashwin. Jadeja and Raina played for Gujarat Lions while Ashwin turned out for RPS during the ban period.