Former Indian opener Gautam Gambhir believes that Chennai Super Kings captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni should not lead the team while batting at number seven. Instead, he suggests that MSD should bat higher in the batting order, and lead the team from the front.
In the Super Kings’ first game against Delhi Capitals (DC) at the Wankhede, the former Indian skipper was sent back to the pavilion on a duck in the lost match, after fast bowler Avesh Khan knocked him off. He arrived at the crease in the number seven position. Keeping this in view, Gambhir, who led Kolkata Knight Riders to two IPL victories, expressed his opinion by saying that MSD “should lead from the front” and bat higher up the order.
“We keep mentioning this thing that a leader needs to lead from the front. You can’t be leading, when you’re batting at No.7,” said the former Delhi Daredevils opener during Star Sports Live Show. He feels that the CSK skipper should start soon and make this a ritual, as the skipper looks forward to playing a few more seasons of the tournament.
Furthermore, Gambhir spoke that according to him Dhoni should bat at number 4 or 5, which is currently held by Suresh Raina and Ambati Rayudu. Along with advising about the position in which MSD should play, he also addresses the issues in the bowling lineup CSK is to deal with.
“Plus, he is not the MS Dhoni, which he used to be probably four or five years back, where he could just come in and start taking on the bowlers from the word go. For me, I think he needs to bat at number four/ five. Nothing below that.”
MS Dhoni was also criticized for coming lower down the order in the previous season, where he failed to impress with his bat, and for the first time didn’t qualify for the playoffs. Dhoni announced his retirement from international last year once T-20 World Cup was postponed. The legendary Indian captain has found it difficult to score big at the end of the innings in the last couple of years. However, he still has the ability to hit big sixes. Gambhir’s suggestion may help CSK and MS Dhoni in short term. Spending more time on the pitch will help him to get back his mojo for IPL 2021.
CSK needs to get the defeat against Delhi Capitals out of their system and focus on the next game. They face an in-form Punjab Kings on Friday, April 16 whilst being placed at the bottom of the table at the NRR of -0.779.