Gautam Gambhir has opined that the absence of Suresh Raina would provide a good opportunity for MS Dhoni to come up the order and bat at number 3. He explained that this would enable Dhoni to anchor the whole innings and also help big hitters at the back-end to express themselves freely.
Chennai Super Kings will be without their vice-captain and highest run-scorer Suresh Raina in IPL 2020, after he decided to return home due to personal reasons. This opened up no. 3 position up for grab and two-time IPL-winning captain Gautam Gambhir has joined the long list of people who want to see MS Dhoni bat higher up the order for Chennai Super Kings in the tournament this season.
Gambhir opined that this is the right time for Dhoni to take up more responsibility as a batsman and promote himself to Raina's slot at No. 3. He elaborated that this would enable Dhoni to take up the role anchor and also help big hitters in the lower-middle order to express themselves freely.
"It will be a good opportunity for MS Dhoni to come and bat at no. 3. And he has been away from the game for the last one year, so he would end up getting a lot more balls to face and then he can actually play the anchor innings as well which he has been doing for India for the last couple of years," Gambhir said on Star Sports' show Cricket Connected as quoted by India Today
"So, MS Dhoni at No. 3 and then they have got depth with Kedar Jadhav, Dwayne Bravo, Sam Curran, all those guys they can come in. So, I think it is going to be a great opportunity for someone like MS Dhoni and I am sure he is going to relish that. Also, Suresh Raina not being there, you want to have some experienced player batting at No. 3, so it could be MS Dhoni now."
MS Dhoni has been out of action since India's exit from the 2019 World Cup semi-finals in July. In his last match, he got run out and could not finish the much important semi-final for India. He had since taken a hiatus from cricket and IPL 2020 would mark his return to cricket. The former Kolkata Knight Riders skipper, however, added that it won't be easy for Dhoni to bat higher up the order as he has not played any cricket for over a year now.
"He has been away from the game for the last 1 year. It's not going to be easy because IPL is a proper cricket tournament. The quality of cricket is right up there,” he added.