The first match of the Indian Super League (IPL) witnessed empty stands but millions were glued to their telivision sets to see on screen their favourite cricketer, Mahendra Singh Dhoni. And the moment finally arrived when CSK’s Thala Dhoni appeared at the toss, donning a familiar smile on his face.
His calmness on the field seemed to have rubbed off on the team as they registered a comfortable victory over arch-rivals, Mumbai Indians (MI) in the opener despite losing two early wickets.
In the match, Dhoni aprrised us how the lockdown period gave him time to work on his fitness.
Not only fans, Dhoni is loved by India’s current and former cricketers as well. If Sachin Tendulkar was popular in the 90’s, it was Dhoni, with his long hair and explosive strokes that won the hearts of millions of Indians. And Indian legend, Sunil Gavaskar, too, believes Dhoni gets mass adulation as much as Kohli and Sachin.
The electricity Dhoni generates on the crowd is more: Gavaskar
Although, he took a notch higher, explaining that Dhoni is loved “all over India” unlike Kohli and Sachin who are more popular in specific regions. Gavaskar opined his view right after the toss.
“When he steps on to the field, the electricity he generates on the crowd is more. I know Sachin Tendulkar and Virat Kohli’s fans might disagree with me,” he said.
“Since MSD comes from Ranchi, which doesn’t have a cricket culture as such, the whole India loves him. Sachin is more popular in Mumbai and Kolkata. Kohli is more popular in Delhi and Bangalore. MS Dhoni is loved all over India,” Gavaskar added.
After the first win, Mahi will look to continue the momentum and take the trophy back in CSK’s cabinet after losing out to Mumbai Indians last year.