Suresh Raina has revealed that MS Dhoni's captaincy helped CSK players gain extra confidence in IPL 2021 where they stand second on the points table and hopes the team can win it for Dhoni. Raina also mentioned that he and Dhoni have immense respect for each other throughout their playing days.
MS Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings are one of the contenders to win the IPL 2021 as they, currently, sit on the second position on the points table with 10 points just behind leaders Delhi Capitals, who have played one game more than three-time champions.
The question that still remains to concern the fans is will the team be able to continue their run when the tournament restarts and moves to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) where they had a devastating campaign last season, the first time where they failed to qualify for the IPL playoffs.
However, the Chennai outfit has rejiggered under Dhoni in the first half of the news season with England players like Moeen Ali and Sam Curran making the difference for the side. Opener Ruturaj Gaikwad seemed in good touch getting a couple of fifties against Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad. Senior batsman Suresh Raina feels that the team received some extra confidence from Dhoni's leadership in the 14th edition of IPL and hopes CSK to win the trophy for their captain.
"Hopefully, when we go to Dubai, we will have a camp and we can again win it for him. I think the way we were playing this year, we were having some extra confidence from his captaincy and he was enjoying each other's success. He was giving freedom to all the players and having Moeen Ali, Sam Curran, Dwayne Bravo and Ruturaj in the side, we had the momentum. Hopefully, we can do it again this year for MS," Raina said on Star Sports' Cricket Connected, reported Hindustan Times
Raina is known to be a confidant of Dhoni and the duo have been termed as 'Thala-Chinna Thala' by CSK fans, in Tamil 'Thala' is called as a leader and 'Chinna Thala' means the right hand of the leader. The left-handed batsman had declared his international retirement hours after the former Indian skipper announced his decision to hang his boots from international cricket and Raina promises to do the same for CSK. CSK have appeared in the IPL finals on eight occasions, winning three titles and ended up as runners-up five times. Raina expressed his relation with Dhoni as an elder brother to him and both respect each other massively.
“We’ve (him and Dhoni) played a lot of matches for India as well as CSK. I think it's just the emotion and on top of that, we have that respect for each other. I have learned a lot from him and he is like a big brother to me," Raina expressed his bond with Dhoni.
"We have won a lot of trophies together and have lost a lot of finals as well but the respect we have for each other is immense," he signed off.
The IPL 2021 was halted midway in early May due to the rising number of COVID-19 cases in the second wave in India with the tournament scheduled to restart in the middle of September.