Former Pakistani pacemaker Shoaib Akhtar has stated that MS Dhoni could return as player and captain of Chennai Super Kings (CSK) next IPL season if he wishes. He added that, if not as a player, the legendary goalie-slugger can also take on the role of mentor or head coach.
Chennai have had a disastrous IPL 2022 season, winning just four of their 12 matches so far. His campaign has been marred by the captaincy controversy. Ravindra Jadeja was given the leadership reins at the start of the season, but Dhoni was re-appointed captain midway through the edition.
With playoff hopes for the season over, CSK now hopes to build a team for the future. On what role the legendary Dhoni can play for the franchise in the future, Akhtar said Sportskeeda:
“Obviously he can continue playing next season if he wants. But, if he doesn’t want to continue playing, he can come back as a mentor or even head coach. That wouldn’t be a bad role for him. It all depends on Dhoni. He is an asset. Either he’s on the team or he’s with the team.”
Sharing their views on the captaincy fiasco, the ‘Rawalpindi Express’ claimed that the Chennai management did not seem so serious, which is why the problem escalated to such an extent. opined:
“The CSK leadership did not seem serious this time. Why the captaincy went to Jadeja we do not know. But they need to come back with a clear head next season.”
Jadeja recently left CSK’s biobubble amid rumors of a split between the all-rounder and management. However, the franchise’s official statement on the matter stated that Jadeja had been released because they did not want to risk further injury to his ribs.
“Dhoni could play another song and announce his retirement” – Shoaib Akhtar
Asked if he felt that Dhoni would announce his retirement from the IPL after the current season, Akhtar replied that no one can read what is going on in the mind of the former Indian captain. He commented:
“Dhoni could play another song and announce his retirement. One cannot really predict what it can do. He is the kind of person he is. If he suddenly feels that he has to back off, he will. To be honest, the time has come for some players. There are no ifs and buts in the cricket franchise.”
Dhoni announced his retirement from international cricket in 2020 with a social media post, which included a montage capturing his career in India and a classic Bollywood song playing at the same time.
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