Ahead of the upcoming Indian Premier League, MS Dhoni stunned the entire cricket fraternity by announcing his international retirement. The legendary keeper-batsman was involved in the CSK training camp when he announced his decision to retire.
Now former India pacer and current Chennai Super Kings bowling coach Lakshmipathy Balaji has revealed what he talked with MS Dhoni after he announced his retirement. As per Balaji, Dhoni had a casual chat with Balaji. He revealed:
“After practice gets over, I normally talk a lot to Dhoni about the wicket, about practicing and playing conditions. So that day, I finished practice and I went inside. I did not realize that he had already put his retirement message at 7:29 pm. So, after posting the message, Dhoni walked up to me as usual and he casually told me that he had asked the groundsman to water the ground extra for the pitch.
I said okay. And I didn’t realize anything, it was a huge moment in his life. But, just like that he moved on, and that’s Dhoni for you. I finally realized he announced his retirement. It took some time for me to sink in the moment. Dhoni’s uniqueness is the way he is detached. He will never stop no matter what the situation is, and moves on in his own style,”
Further, Balaji also showered praises on MS Dhoni’s batting style and leadership qualities. As per him, Dhoni’s captaincy changed the entire leadership perspective among everyone. He said:
“From the year 2000, according to me, there’s nobody like Dhoni who’s had such a massive influence on not just Indian cricket but world cricket. I’ve heard about brutal hitting, hard-hitting that when someone hits the ball, it’ll be difficult for a bowler or a fielder to even keep their hands on the ball. I saw that for the first time with Dhoni.
Even now if there are 20-plus runs needed to win in the last over and if I had to pick someone, it would always be Dhoni. Such massive impact he has. His leadership and his batting styles are totally different. His leadership changed the perception of leadership among all captains. The way he maintains his emotion on the field, maintaining the team environment and camaraderie, leading the team successfully, only MS Dhoni could do it,” Balaji added