Chennai Super Kings (CSK) MS Dhoni is already 41 years of age now but he is hitting the ball longer and farther than most batters in the IPL 2023. Dhoni, after his blazing 20 off 9 balls against the Delhi Capitals on Wednesday night, has the second-best strike-rate in IPL 2023 – 204.25 – with 10 sixes to his name already.
Not only that, Dhoni has helped the four-time former champions CSK bounce back from a dismal IPL 2022 season where they finished near the bottom of the table and now look favourites to reach the IPL 2023 Playoffs along with defending champions Gujarat Titans. CSK are currently second on the Points Table with 15 points from 11 matches.
Former England spinner and Jio Cinema’s expert believes that MS Dhoni is currently the ‘best captain’ in IPL 2023 and is ‘too big’ to retire just yet. “Every time he is batting he is just hitting sixes and he is brilliant with the gloves as well behind the stumps. Apart from that his captaincy is the best in the IPL 2023. The way he brought himself up to the stumps with Deepak Chahar bowling to Mumbai Indians captain Rohit Sharma and plotted his dismissal, it was just too good to force a false shot from an all-time great,” Graeme Swann replied to a query by Zee News English during a virtual media interaction.
I’ve never witnessed anything like this at a cricket stadium, MS Dhoni walking out to bat on his home turf. The crowd even celebrated the previous wicket to just get him to the crease. pic.twitter.com/UOueq8GlSr
— David Brooke (@BrookeBack13) May 10, 2023
Swann believes it is premature to say that Dhoni will retire after the IPL 2023 season. “It’s natural that when cricketers get towards the back-end of their career people start to question about their retirement date. If he wants to keep on playing, he can do whatever he likes in my book. I don’t think this will be his last year to be honest, he is too big to go. He needs someone wheeling him out and maybe then also he will be hitting sixes,” Swann added.
Ravichandran Ashwin is on the top of his game: Graeme Swann
Swann ended his Test career with 255 wickets in 60 Tests and also ended up with 104 ODI and 51 T20I wickets in his career. The former England off-spinner was in awe of Rajasthan Royals off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin. The Tamil Nadu and Team India all-rounder is the second-highest wicket-taker for RR in IPL 2023 with 14 wickets behind Yuzvendra Chahal, who has 17 wickets.
“He (Aswhin) is a really good bowler and on top of his game currently. He very rarely bowls the same delivery twice. He loves to be the centre-piece of every game. Whenever there is pressure, he loves to be there,” Swann said about Ashwin.
Asked about Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) spinner Sunil Narine’s poor show this season, Swann said he’s just having ‘confidence issues’ and the West Indies all-rounder should not be ‘written off’.
“I just think he’s bowling without the confidence in himself. Sometimes you get that little bit of luck when a bad ball gets a wicket, and it feels right again. I’m not writing him off. I will still pick him in my team. When you have (Varun) Chakravarthy and Suyash (Sharma) bowling so well, they can hide him (Narine) a little bit,” Swann added.
Kolkata Knight Riders are set to face off against Rajasthan Royals in match No. 56 of the IPL 2023 on Thursday night.