'It's completely in MS Dhoni's mind': Rahane adds drama to Stokes' role in CSK XI vs GT amid injury reports
CSK batter Ajinkya Rahane then added more drama to the development on Stokes' possibility of featuring in the CSK playing XI with a stunning response.
Chennai Super Kings' (CSK) biggest signing at the mini-auction last December was England all-rounder Ben Stokes, for a whopping amount of INR 16.25 crore. Such big was the signing that it immediately sparked speculations at MS Dhoni handing over CSK's captaincy reins to the England Test skipper. While there has been no talks around that from the officials, CSK were however handed a major injury blow pertaining to Stokes ahead of their IPL 2023 opener against defending champions Gujarat Titans. CSK batter Ajinkya Rahane then added more drama to the development on Stokes' possibility of featuring in the CSK playing XI with a stunning response.
Mike Hussey, the franchise's batting coach, had confirmed a few days back that Stokes is likely to feature as a specialist batter and that a call will be taken in the later stages of the tournament whether the all-rounder will resume his bowling duties. The development came amid reports that Stokes had taken an injection for his injury on his left knee.
The England star too had admitted earlier this month that the injury had been "very frustrating" at the end of the team's tour of New Zealand but had also added that IPL would give a chance to "get myself into a position that I feel like I don't have to worry about my knee anymore." Stokes would want to manage the injury with Ashes slated to start from the second week of June.
On Thursday, the day before the IPL 2023 opener in Ahmedabad, Rahane, who was also roped in at the mini-auction by CSK, as asked if Stokes would feature as an all-rounder to as a specialist batter against Gujarat Titans to which the veteran India batter gave an epic response.
"You will see that tomorrow how Mahi bhai uses him. It's completely in Mahi bhai's mind. He will use him really well," Rahane said.
The CSK batter was also asked about his role in the team in the presence of a set opening pair in Devon Conway and Ruturaj Gaikwad.
"I have always been an opener. I have always opened the batting in the T20 format, so not much of a difference in my role. Still, whatever the management and captain asks me to do, I am always open to doing it. For me, it's always about the team, so whenever I get an opportunity I will give my best," Rahane explained.