MS Dhoni a great teacher, an inspiration for Rising Pune Supergiants: Rahane

Ajinkya Rahane has said MS Dhoni remains an inspiration for both Indian and overseas players and is confident that Australia skipper Steve Smith will take Dhoni’s captaincy advice in IPL 2017.

ipl 2017 Updated: Apr 04, 2017 15:16 IST
MS Dhoni,mahendra singh dhoni,Rising pune supergiants
MS Dhoni with Jharkhand teammates during the Vijay Hazare Trophy Match in Kolkata recently. Dhoni will remain an important member of the Rising Pune Supergiants team in the Indian Premier League this season. (PTI)

Ajinkya Rahane is certain Steve Smith, the Australian captain and the franchise skipper, will seek MS Dhoni’s advice during the 2017 Indian Premier League.

Speaking in a promotional event, Rahane said, “A person like MS Dhoni teaches a lot even with his presence. He doesn’t speak much, but when he does, he leaves you inspired.”

Ajinkya Rahane added that it was necessary to give Steve Smith the space as he was the Rising Pune Supergiants captain and said that MS Dhoni’s presence served as an inspiration not just for Indian players but also for overseas players in the Indian Premier League.

Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane hold the Border Gavaskar Trophy after winning the Test series against Australia in Dharamsala. (PTI)

Stepping out of Virat Kohli’s shadow

During the fourth Test against Australia in Dharamsala, India suffered a big blow when Virat Kohli was ruled out due to a shoulder injury.

Ajinkya Rahane stepped up and led magnificently as India defeated Australia by eight wickets to clinch the four-Test series 2-1.

Rahane, who joined a select group of Indian captains who had secured a Test victory on debut, said a phone call from Sachin Tendulkar made the difference.

Steven Smith walks towards Ajinkya Rahane after India won the fourth India vs Australia Test in Dharamsala on March 28, 2017. (AP)

“Before the match, I got a call from Sachin. He also asked me to follow my instincts. It inspired me. As a captain, I knew I am a different person. On the ground, I knew I had seniors with me, but at the end, I had to take calls. Throughout the match, I wanted to follow my style,” Rahane said.

Rising Pune Supergiants have a problem of plenty when it comes to captaincy. The team consists of Rahane, Smith, Dhoni and Faf du Plessis, all who have captained the country at the highest levels.

When Dhoni was not appointed the captain of the Rising Pune Supergiants team, there was criticism from some quarters. However, the team owner Sanjiv Goenka said the team was targeting a better showing after a poor show in the 2016 edition of the tournament and Smith was appointed to revamp the side.

In the previous year, Rising Pune Supergiants managed to avoid the wooden spoon to Kings XI Punjab.

First Published: Apr 04, 2017 13:12 IST