'Expectation will be there but he's 42' - Irfan Pathan on whether MS Dhoni will move up in batting order

MS Dhoni has only faced 21 balls in the five matches Chennai Super Kings have played in IPL 2024.

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Irfan Pathan and MS Dhoni
Irfan Pathan and MS Dhoni. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Mumbai Indians (MI) is one of the most keenly-contested rivalries in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024. The two most successful teams in the competition are set to lock horns at the iconic Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Sunday, April 14.

Ahead of the high-octane clash, former India all-rounder Irfan Pathan shared his take on the chances of seeing MS Dhoni moving up the batting order. CSK have won three of their five games in IPL 2024 and MS Dhoni has faced only 21 balls. However, he has looked in sublime touch, scoring 39 runs at a strike rate of 185.71, and adding four fours and three sixes to his enviable IPL career numbers. Irfan reminded everyone that Dhoni is now 42 years old and said that it is highly unlikely that the legendary wicketkeeper-batter would promote himself up the batting order.

"The expectation will be there. However, he is a 42-year-old MS Dhoni. We still say that he is young because he has maintained himself like that. The way he used to come earlier after 10 to 11 overs, he used to drive, set up, and then finish the game," Pathan said on the Stars Sports' Game Plan. "He has given himself a small role now where he comes to bat in the last two to three overs and plays big shots. So, I don't see it happening. However, if it happens, it's better for everyone, including the fans."

Also Read: IPL 2024: MS Dhoni spotted in nostalgic reunion with World Cup silverware at BCCI headquarters

Scales will be tilted towards Suryakumar Yadav winning the battle against Ravindra Jadeja: Irfan Pathan

Suryakumar Yadav scored an exhilarating 19-ball 51 in Mumbai's last encounter against Royal Challengers Bengaluru and helped his side win their second game in five matches. Meanwhile, Ravindra Jadeja is coming off a Player of the Match-winning performance against Kolkata Knight Riders. Pathan was asked about the potential face-off between the two Indian stalwarts and hereckoned that Suryakumar will come up trumps due to his immense knowledge of the Wankhede surface.

"This battle will happen for sure because Ravindra Jadeja bowls at the stage where Suryakumar Yadav bats. Who will win, will be a very big question. Ravindra Jadeja bowls at the stumps and Suryakumar Yadav plays the stump line sometimes on the off side, at times on the leg side, and plays the sweep on other occasions," he responded.

"He plays not only with the bowling but also with the bowler's mind. The bowler in front of him is very strong. However, I feel the scales will be tilted towards Suryakumar Yadav winning this battle because the match is in Mumbai and he knows that pitch very well. You don't get much turn there," Pathan explained.

Also Read: IPL 2024, Match 29: Mumbai Indians vs Chennai Super Kings Preview

The Jadeja versus Suryakumar battle stems from the fact that the left-arm spinner has had the upper hand against the Mumbai batter in their previous meetings. Suryakumar's average against Jadeja is a dismal 12 and he has an underwhelming strike rate of 77.40.

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