'When the captain got looked in his eyes, he said 'I'll go': CSK coach reveals dugout scenes before Dhoni went in to bat
- When a set Ruturaj Gaikwad was out on the fifth ball of the penultimate over, CSK coach Stephen Fleming revealed that it was MS Dhoni himself who took the call to bat ahead of Ravindra Jadeja.
MS Dhoni rolled back the years and produced a vintage MSD special, as he knocked off 13 required off the last over against Delhi Capitals and took Chennai Super Kings into the final. Dhoni had the trademark calm, cool and composed look on his face even as the match headed went down to the final over. He had done this many times in the past and Sunday was just another example as to why Dhoni's form may be temporary, his class will always remain permanent.
However, things in the CSK dugout weren't that simple. Coach Stephen Fleming informed that prior to Dhoni walking out to bat, everyone was in each other's ears, trying to figure out the best possible way forward with DC tightening the screws on Chennai. When a set Ruturaj Gaikwad was out on the first ball of the penultimate over, Fleming revealed that it was Dhoni himself who took the call to bat ahead of Jadeja.
"There was a lot of chat. We spoke more in those 20 overs than we have for a long time. There was a lot of technical discussion and maneuvering to try and work out how this was going to unfold. When the captain got looked in his eyes, he said 'I'll go'. It's been well-documented the times that he has done that. Today was one of those. I ain't holding him back, and we saw the result of that," Fleming said during the post-match presser.
When Dhoni walked out to bat ahead of Jadeja, the move raised a few eyebrows. And rightly so. The CSK skipper had not been in the best of nicks, while Jadeja the batsman is in the form of his life. But whenever Dhoni has promoted himself ahead of another left-handed batsman, everyone knows what happens.
At the 2011 World Cup final, Dhoni batted ahead of the in-form Yuvraj Singha and it resulted in one of the most memorable moments in Indian cricket. On Sunday night he did the same and led CSK to a record 9th IPL final.