Lakshmipathy Balaji reveals what MS Dhoni told him during CSK camp on the day he announced his retirement

Lakshmipathy Balaji reveals what MS Dhoni told him during CSK camp on the day he announced his retirement

Balaji also heaped praise on Dhoni's batting style and exemplary leadership. According to Balaji, Dhoni's captaincy changed the perception of leadership among all captains.

MS Dhoni and Lakshmipathy Balaji
MS Dhoni and Lakshmipathy Balaji. (Photo Source: Twitter)

MS Dhoni, before leaving for IPL 2020, stunned the entire cricket fraternity by announcing his international retirement. The India stalwart was involved in Chennai Super Kings training camp when he announced his decision to walk away from the biggest stage.

The former India skipper, through an Instagram video, shared his memories in the national jersey and doused speculations over his international future. Mahi was last seen in the India jersey during India’s semi-final oust against New Zealand in 2019 World Cup.

Be it his batting expertise, brilliant glovework or exceptional leadership skills, Dhoni will go down as one of the best players in the history of Indian cricket. Post Dhoni’s retirement, many former players paid tribute to him and wishes him luck for his future endeavours.

Former India pacer and current Chennai Super Kings bowling coach Lakshmipathy Balaji has revealed what he talked with Dhoni on the day he announced his retirement. After posting the message of his international retirement at 7:29 pm, Dhoni had a casual chat with Balaji. ‘Thala’ walked to Balaji and told him that he had asked the groundsman to water the ground extra for the pitch.

It took some time for me to sink in the moment: Lakshmipathy Balaji

“After practice gets over, I normally talk a lot to Dhoni about the wicket, about practicing and playing conditions. So that day, I finished practice and I went inside. I did not realize that he had already put his retirement message at 7:29 pm. So, after posting the message, Dhoni walked up to me as usual and he casually told me that he had asked the groundsman to water the ground extra for the pitch.

I said okay. And I didn’t realize anything, it was a huge moment in his life. But, just like that he moved on, and that’s Dhoni for you. I finally realized he announced his retirement. It took some time for me to sink in the moment. Dhoni’s uniqueness is the way he is detached. He will never stop no matter what the situation is, and moves on in his own style,” revealed Balaji on Star Sports’ Tamil show ‘Cricket Connected – Aatam Thodarattum’.

Furthermore, Balaji also heaped praise on Dhoni’s batting style and exemplary leadership. According to Balaji, Dhoni’s captaincy changed the perception of leadership among all captains. Apart from his finishing, wicketkeeping and captaincy, Dhoni was also known for his on-field composure.

“From the year 2000, according to me, there’s nobody like Dhoni who’s had such a massive influence on not just Indian cricket but world cricket. I’ve heard about brutal hitting, hard-hitting that when someone hits the ball, it’ll be difficult for a bowler or a fielder to even keep their hands on the ball. I saw that for the first time with Dhoni.

Even now if there are 20-plus runs needed to win in the last over and if I had to pick someone, it would always be Dhoni. Such massive impact he has. His leadership and his batting styles are totally different. His leadership changed the perception of leadership among all captains. The way he maintains his emotion on the field, maintaining the team environment and camaraderie, leading the team successfully, only MS Dhoni could do it,” Balaji added.