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Who was M Karunanidhi’s favourite cricketer? Read about the stalwart’s cricket connection

M Karunanidhi made it a habit to watch Chennai Super Kings matches to catch a glimpse of MS Dhoni. However, he was forced to stop going to the stadium after a surgery.

cricket Updated: Aug 08, 2018 18:31 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
m Karunanidhi,ms dhoni,csk
DMK chief M Karunanidhi is seen with cricketer MS Dhoni. Karunanidhi passed away on Tuesday, Aug 7, 2018, after a prolonged illness, at a Chennai hospital where he was admitted for some days.(PTI)

Former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi, who passed away on August 7, aged 94, wore several hats during his life. A poet, dramatist, script-writer and most importantly a noted politician in the history of independent India. Along with all these things, the DMK patriarch was also an ardent cricket fan.

According to a report on NewsMinute, Karunanidhi skipped several meetings and appointments to watch the Indian team play and was moved by Sachin Tendulkar’s retirement speech.

“He would somehow adjust meetings, or even cancel them,” one of his staff members was quoted by The News Minute.

After the government decided to honour Tendulkar with the Bharat Ratna, Karunanidhi had said, “You (Sachin) have walked into history and history is bejewelled by your presence. It is quite natural that the Government of India has announced the Bharat Ratna for you in recognition of your unmatched records.” You have set grand standards.”

The report also says that Karunanidhi was a fan of former Indian captain Kapil Dev. But his favourite cricketer was Chennai’s adopted son Mahendra Singh Dhoni, the captain of the popular Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Chennai Super Kings. He made it a habit to watch CSK matches to catch a glimpse of Dhoni. However, he was forced to stop going to the stadium after a surgery.

Back in 2011, when India won the ICC World Cup, the stalwart awarded captain Dhoni and the team a prize money of three crore rupees. Also, he awarded Ravichandran Ashwin, a Chennai boy, a sum of one crore.

He was also very fond of former Indian captain and opener Krishnamachari Srikkanth, who also hails from Chennai. The report also mentioned that Sri Lankan legend Muttiah Muralitharan, who is married to a Tamil Nadu girl, was a frequent visitor to the Karunanidhi household.

First Published: Aug 08, 2018 18:21 IST