Two days before IPL starts, Dhoni decides to hand over CSK captain to Jadeja © BCCI
I fully support the captain's decision. They are N.Y. Srinivasan was. Was CSK management surprised by MS Dhoni's decision, as everyone in the outside world was? Has the Captain's question been discussed before? How was Ravindra Jadeja?
The owners of the Chennai Super Kings did not want to take note of Dhoni's sudden decision to resign as captain two days before the start of the new Indian Premier League (IPL) season but said they understood. "I am going to call back," Srinivasan reiterated during a conversation with Kribus on Thursday night (March 24).
Dhoni had apparently been considering stepping down for some time, but CSK insiders said the most successful IPL captain was shocked when he shared his views with some management officials on Thursday morning. At around 10:30 am, a call came from the Super Kings team's hotel in Mumbai to Srinivasan's office in Chennai asking if Dhoni wanted to talk to him. Srinivasan was busy at that time.
Dhoni, chief executive Kasi Vishwanathan, and Chennai franchise adviser Sundar Raman were waiting for the return call, which came later when Dhoni shared his decision with the CSK boss. People close to him say that even Srinivasan was shocked at first, but he realized it after the call was over. The phone call lasted about 10 minutes.
Jadeja chose Dhoni and is said to have told management that he would lead off-road, the pinnacle of his career. Dhoni said that at the age of 40, he does not see himself playing much and he feels that the vice-captain is meaningless in the IPL setup. The discussion ended there.
"Argument? Has there ever been a big discussion with Dhoni? He has made a decision and we agree. Nothing happens, no one can oppose him. He felt that the vice-captain has not taken any responsibility." Be there Change will be easy. He is 40 years old and has not been able to play forever. Management has always supported it. Why not now? "
Dhoni has always been considered the undisputed leader of CSK and Srinivasan himself used to say that "Dhoni is CSK and CSK is Dhoni". However, the question of leadership has been raised many times before. It is believed that Dhoni suggested changes when he won the title in 2018 and sometimes during the last year. But the management insisted that Dhoni stay on the job. He feared he might announce his decision to retire soon after winning the IPL in Dubai last October. He was relieved that it wasn't.
Dhoni has been involved in season planning from the beginning. He was in constant contact with the people sitting at the CSK table during the mega auction last month. He is thought to have attended the pre-auction meeting, but some say it did not last long. "We will make a decision after the first round of auction," Dhoni told CSK officials.
The decision may come as a surprise, but some insiders in the franchise, CricketBuzz, have revealed that there has been talking of a change in leadership at the Chennai level at the coaching level. During the recent series between India and Sri Lanka, there were indications that Jadeja could take over the captaincy of CSK as soon as possible. And most importantly, Sunil Gavaskar announced in a TV show 24 hours ago that Jadeja is ready to lead.
"Ravindra Jadeja has matured over the years as a player, the way he adapts his game and the way he reads the conditions of the game is amazing. Don't be surprised if the captaincy goes to Jadeja," Gavaskar told Star Sports.
Asked if it was his knowledge, conjecture, or conjecture, Gavaskar said he was not surprised but did not expect it. "Dhoni is 40 years old and I expected him to take occasional breaks and hand over the captaincy to Jadeja," the former Indian captain told CricketBuzz.
Before the call ended, Srinivasan asked Dhoni about his future plans as a player, believing that he was available for the entire season this year. Dhoni's response was clear that he would remain as a player, reiterating his famous public announcement that he would only hang his shoes in Chennai. "We expect him to continue playing for a year or two, take occasional breaks and finally establish himself as a mentor."