Chennai Super Kings CEO Kasi Viswanathan is of the opinion that MS Dhoni will continue to play in the IPL and this season won't be his final year. He also revealed that the franchise signed Cheteshwar Pujara not only to honour him but they also reckoned that he can do well in T20s.
For a vast section of fans, especially, MS Dhoni's, IPL is even more significant than before because it's only the tournament where they will get to see the former Indian captain in action. There were doubts over Dhoni playing the 2021 IPL, as his retirement from international cricket was followed by a dismal season for CSK. However, the 39-year-old, will continue to lead the side this season as well.
But after the culmination of this year's IPL, there's going to be a mega auction and many had started assuming that it might well turn out to be the final nail in the coffin for Dhoni's IPL career. However, Chennai Super Kings CEO Kasi Viswanathan doesn't think the 2021 IPL will be Dhoni's final year in the cash-rich league. He also added that he may well be available for next year's IPL as well.
"I don't think it is going to be his final year. This is my personal view and I don't think we are looking at anybody now," Viswanathan told the Indian Express, reported ESPN Cricinfo.
"We can expect MS Dhoni to be part of both [IPL 2020 and 2021] and probably for even the next year - 2022."
One of the most surprising selections in this year's auctions was that by CSK when they bought India's Test no. 3 Cheteshwar Pujara at his base price. Viswanathan revealed that it wasn't just done to honour him but the franchise also reckoned that he can 'adapt' to any format.
"We also wanted to honour him, that's for sure. But at the same time, I can tell you one thing, a person of his calibre with such good technique, he can adapt to any format," Viswanathan said. "That is our view. He can be a player who can contribute a lot to CSK. That's what we felt and that is the reason why we picked him."
However, he didn't tell whether Pujara will be starting in the XI or not for the Men in Yellow.
"He will certainly have a role to play, but I cannot say whether he will play the first game or the second game."
Ravindra Jadeja had played a major role for CSK last year as a finisher. He has been injured since the Australia Tests but CSK's CEO remains hopeful that he will start for the side cometh their opening fixture.
"See, Jadeja has been cleared [to play] by the NCA [National Cricket Academy]," he said. "He has joined our team for practice. He is looking good. He is working hard. And we are hoping that he will be fully fit by the time the IPL starts."