MS Dhoni, who has been the captain of the Chennai Super Kings since the first season of the tournament in 2008 – with the exception of the two seasons during which the team was banned – has announced his decision to step down from the position. Ravindra Jadeja will take over as the team’s captain for the upcoming IPL 2022 season. The franchise issued a statement in which it stated that “Dhoni will continue to represent Chennai Super Kings this season and in the future”.
In an interview with ESPNcricinfo, Super Kings CEO Kasi Viswanathan stated that Dhoni desired a “smooth transition” in the team’s leadership and that Jadeja was prepared to take over the reins for the team, which won its fourth IPL 2022 title last year. It was confirmed by Dhoni at a team meeting held on Thursday before the players went for training, according to Viswanathan. The reigning champions will play their first match of the tournament against the Kolkata Knight Riders on March 26 at Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium, according to Viswanathan.
According to Viswanathan, MS Dhoni was considering it. “He believes that the time has come for him to relinquish command to Jaddu [Jadeja] on the field. He believes that Jaddu is also in peak form at this point in his career and that this is the best time for him to take over as CSK’s captain. In the back of his mind, he must consider what will be beneficial to the franchise.”
In addition to Dhoni and Suresh Raina, Jadeja will become the franchise’s third captain, following in the footsteps of Dhoni and Suresh Raina.
In his statement, Viswanathan stated that while Dhoni did not personally inform him of his choice in advance, the franchise was not surprised by it, as they had addressed the matter of the succession plan even before the 2021 IPL and had informed Ravindra Jadeja about it at that time. “Earlier, he [Jadeja] had been approached. The idea was floated even as recently as last year. We were confident that he would be the most qualified candidate to succeed MS.”
The future of MS Dhoni has been a topic of discussion for the past two IPL seasons. Dhoni had previously told his fans that he will continue to play for the franchise for at least one more season during a Super Kings-organized event in Chennai in November. IPL 2022
Similarly to when he handed over the leadership of the Indian team to Virat Kohli, Viswanathan believes Dhoni is waiting for the right moment to return. “He did the same thing with Virat Kohli after grooming him for a few years at the highest level of international cricket. In the same way, he desired a seamless transition.”
A large amount of trust was placed in Jadeja’s leadership, according to Viswanathan. Jaddu has the potential to be a valuable asset to the franchise, according to him. “In his prime, [he is] a good all-round cricketer who can turn the tide of a team’s fortune. MS’s counsel will also be available at all times. This will serve as an excellent orientation program.”
Dhoni is widely regarded as one of India’s greatest all-format captains, and his leadership legacy at the Super Kings is equally impressive. After Dhoni led India to victory in the inaugural Twenty20 World Cup in 2007, the late VB Chandrasekhar, a former Tamil Nadu captain, spoke to Super Kings owner N Srinivasan on Dhoni’s leadership qualities. Chandrasekhar, who was sitting at the Super Kings table during the maiden IPL auction, was then instructed by Srinivasan to buy Dhoni at any cost.
Dhoni has, over the years, more than returned the trust placed in him. He guided Super Kings to 130 wins, 81 defeats, and, most importantly, six titles in 213 matches, including four in the IPL and two in the now-defunct Champions League T20. He did it in both the IPL 2022 and the CLT20.
Jadeja is a rookie captain, but he has a wealth of expertise in the field of leadership.
Jadeja, on the other hand, has zero prior experience as a captain. Despite the fact that Jadeja, 34, has never commanded a team at the senior level, he served as captain of the India Under-19 squad in 2007.
However, Jadeja is now widely regarded as one of the best all-rounders in the world, regardless of the format. In terms of fielding, there are few better than him in international cricket, but it is his ambition to keep improving that has emerged as his most significant asset over time. Jadeja has just risen to the top of the International Cricket Council’s Test rankings for allrounders following his match-winning effort against Sri Lanka in the Mohali Test, in which he scored 175 runs and then responded with a nine-wicket match haul. Jadeja is also ranked among the top 10 allrounders in one-day internationals (ODIs), and he is an important member of the T20I squad.
Since joining the Super Kings in 2013, Jadeja has established himself as a vital finisher with the bat, a job that Dhoni had previously filled for a long time. The Indians’ Jadeja scored 459 runs throughout the 2020 and 2021 seasons, for an average of 57.37 runs per game and a strong strike rate of 157.73. Over the course of his career, Jadeja has scored two half-centuries, the only two occasions in which he has done so in more than 270 matches. Furthermore, he claimed 19 wickets in 30 matches at an economy rate of 7.78 during this time period.
While he may not have accumulated enough captaincy hours, Jadeja has a wealth of experience playing alongside Dhoni at Super Kings, having appeared in 131 matches with the squad since arriving in 2012. And that, according to Viswanathan, is what made Dhoni believe that Jadeja was the ideal candidate to be his successor, given his gravitas as a player, as a leader, as an allrounder, and as a matchwinner.