Dear MS Dhoni,
Or shall I say Mahi? Well, does it matter anymore? I am still at a loss of words to describe the exact emotions that are running strong through my veins even after 24 hours of CSK’s thrilling win in the IPL 2023 final.
This letter is just about the sheer admiration that I have for your captaincy. It cannot be anything else. All the right moves, all the perfect manoeuvres and probably that towering figure who held on to the mast of Chennai Super Kings despite the pressure of a crumbling physique that somehow stands tall despite all the pressure of the world on those broad shoulders.
In 2007, when you pulled off the unthinkable, that was the first time I bowed to your burning mane adorned visage in front of the TV screens and 16 years later, I had once again bowed to you in front of my laptop screen. The respect that you command is absolutely overwhelming and no other captain in the world can produce the kind of pops that you do when you walk out to the center.
Maybe you will be there in 2024 or may not be. Maybe Chennai Super Kings would crumble down or they may lift their sixth trophy, or simply battle it out hard in the group stages, but honestly, what unfurled last night, that moment would never return.
Pinning your hopes on a bunch of players who weren’t the finest of names in the dugout that included the likes of Devon Conway, Ambati Rayudu, Ajinkya Rahane and Shivam Dube. You knew what exactly was needed to give these players the push and look at how they delivered at the biggest stage of all.
Another couple of names that needs a special mention despite being very young and proving to be expensive, one of them was Tushar Deshpande while the other being Matheesha Pathirana. You somehow exactly knew that what would have got them rolling in the perfect motion. Mahi, I believe that you come with a power which would galvanise the people around you straight away, the moment you would step in the yard.
That kind of vibe is different and rare and very few people can command such iconic flair. Mahi, you may not play again but I would still say that 2023 showed it to the world that a team that had players old and young, players who were written off and most importantly, players who would not make any noise in the dressing room, just with the sheer power of your magnificent radiance and captaincy, you brought them together and soared them to another championship.
A crazy cricket fan of MS Dhoni