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‘Won’t be the last time that we see MS Dhoni’: Hayden feels MSD will return to CSK in IPL 2025, but there’s a twist

Hayden, who played alongside Dhoni in the initial years of IPL, suggested Dhoni will certainly return to CSK but in a different capacity next year.

Legendary Australia opener Matthew Hayden feels that Mahendra Singh Dhoni has already played his last game in the IPL but suggested that he will return in the yellow jersey next season but in a new role. Dhoni, former CSK captain, failed to guide his team to IPL 2024 playoffs as his team’s title defence ended with a defeat against Royal Challengers Bengaluru on Saturday.

Chennai Super Kings’ MS Dhoni plays a shot during the Indian Premier League cricket match between Royal Challengers Bengaluru and Chennai Super Kings in Bengaluru.(AP)

In the match against RCB, the defending champions had to avoid an 18-run defeat, but they were completely outclassed at M Chinnaswamt Stadium and lost the tie by 27 runs. Dhoni fought hard in the end to give some hope to visiting fans but was dismissed in the last over.

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The former CSK captain made 25 off 13 balls with the help of three fours and a huge six, showing that he can still send the ball a long, long way but it wasn’t enough to take his team over the line.

Meanwhile, Hayden, who played alongside Dhoni in the initial years of IPL, suggested Dhoni will certainly return to CSK but in the role of a mentor or other coaching staff member.

“I think this is it. I do believe that this will be the last time that Dhoni will play. Certainly, won’t be the last time that we see Dhoni. I’d be very surprised if he doesn’t mentor or be a part of the family of CSK in an official capacity,” said Hayden on Star Sports Cricket Live.

Also Read | MS Dhoni lands in hometown Ranchi day after CSK’s crushing exit as speculations over MSD’s IPL future hits peak

Hayden further talked about Dhoni’s illustrious career and called him the Thala of CSK.

“I suppose the thing is when you come to the end of your career, whether it is the last part of his career or not, what you don’t want to see is diminishing returns as an athlete. Firstly, as a leader, he is The Thala of the Chennai Super Kings. This is telling me that nothing here is about becoming anything else other than first place,” he added.

Talking further about his match-finishing skills, Hayden asserted that it’s not easy to do the job at the fag end, but he has the brain and the power to do it.

“He’s desperately using his brains, all of that cricket knowledge. And of course, the power is there and that’s always been MS Dhoni. He’s always hit balls at this stage of an innings. At the front, you can understand how players can hit it. But at the back, it’s really hard to hit balls,” Hayden added.


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