IPL 2024: Simon Doull brutally slams MS Dhoni ahead of the SRH vs CSK match

Amid the widespread acclaim for MS Dhoni’s explosive innings of an unbeaten 37 off 16 balls against the Delhi Capitals (DC), cricket pundit Simon Doull offered a contrasting perspective.

Dhoni made his highly anticipated Indian Premier League (IPL) batting debut for the season during Chennai Super Kings (CSK)’s recent encounter with the Delhi in Visakhapatnam on March 31. As he took to the crease, CSK found themselves facing a daunting task, needing 72 runs from just 24 balls – a challenge that appeared formidable, yet not entirely insurmountable.

MS Dhoni’s unconventional innings amid CSK’s defeat in the IPL 2024

Initially, Dhoni’s rapid boundary strikes in the first three balls ignited hopes of a remarkable comeback. However, as the match progressed, a familiar pattern began to emerge. Despite the presence of the hard-hitting all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja at the other end, Dhoni opted to monopolize the strike, denying singles and consuming numerous dot balls, particularly when the required run rate exceeded 40 runs from two overs.

In the pivotal 19th over delivered by Mukesh Kumar, Dhoni faced a series of dot deliveries, punctuated only by a solitary single on the fifth ball. While Dhoni unleashed a flurry of towering sixes and boundaries in the final over by Anrich Nortje, it merely narrowed the margin of defeat as CSK ultimately succumbed by 20 runs.

Also WATCH: MS Dhoni hits an unbelievable one-handed six off Anrich Nortje during the DC vs CSK match

Simon Doull’s critique of Dhoni’s innings

Speaking on Cricbuzz, Doull scrutinized Dhoni’s innings, remarking on the flurry of excitement it generated. Nevertheless, he highlighted Dhoni’s tendency to block deliveries and accumulate dot balls, which transitioned into a reluctance to take singles. Doull expressed disbelief at witnessing this behaviour from the esteemed Dhoni, deeming it a poor decision, especially considering the team’s objective of winning.

“There was lot of ‘oohs and aahs’ about Dhoni’s innings. But he blocked a lot of balls. he faced a lot of dots. Then he started to not take runs. I couldn’t believe what I was watching. I know he is the great MS Dhoni but it was a poor call. Really poor call not to take run. You are still trying to win a game. I know he was batting after a long time, first time he came out to bat in this season and he is probably thinking at some stage maybe he got to find some form but I didn’t agree with it. I didn’t agree with what happen in that situation. To me it was a really poor look,” Doull said.

Doull’s disagreement with Dhoni’s approach

Despite acknowledging Dhoni’s potential need to regain form after a prolonged absence from batting, Doull disagreed with his approach. He described the situation as a poor reflection and questioned the logic behind Dhoni’s actions, particularly his refusal to take singles even when boundaries were not the sole requirement.

“I was watching and I was thinking, you know am I allowed to say this… well yeah we have to at some stage you have too. It didn’t look good to me watching on the television. I have enormous amount of respect for the man but that just didn’t quite look right to me, when he was hitting the ball and not taking the runs. Yes, they might need sixes, their might be boundaries only required but there were a lot of ‘oohs and aahs’ made about it. He is back, Dhoni is back, they lost the game,” the 54-year-old added.

Doull’s surprise at negligence of Ravindra Jadeja

The part that shocked Doull the most was Dhoni’s decision to turn down singles when Jadeja was batting at the other end.

“It’s not like you have got a bunny on the other hand. You have Jadeja at the other end. Think about the final last year, what happened in the final last year… six and four needed of the last two balls to win the title. It’s not like he can’t hit the ball out of the park,” Doull concluded.

CSK will next face Pat Cummins-led Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in their next match at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad on Friday (April 5).

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