'Heartbeat': Fleming's special praise for MS Dhoni after 200th CSK appearance in IPL

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Published: Apr 17, 2021, 12:05 PM(IST)

File photo of MS Dhoni. Photograph:( Zee News Network )

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Chennai Super Kings (CSK) head coach Stephen Fleming had special words for skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni following his 200th appearance for the franchise in the Indian Premier League (IPL). Fleming labelled Dhoni as the ‘heartbeat’ of CSK while saying his longevity and desire to do well for the team are to be appreciated.

Chennai Super Kings (CSK) head coach Stephen Fleming had special words for skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni following his 200th appearance for the franchise in the Indian Premier League (IPL). Fleming labelled Dhoni as the ‘heartbeat’ of CSK while saying his longevity and desire to do well for the team are to be appreciated.

Dhoni has been leading Chennai Super Kings since the inaugural edition of IPL in 2008.

"His longevity has to be mentioned and appreciated...to play 200 games and still have a desire to do well is a testament to his attitude towards the game and franchise," Fleming said after CSK beat Punjab Kings by six wickets win in the ongoing IPL here on Friday.

"I think the franchise has grown and MS has grown with it, so it is a great relationship and great fun," the former New Zealand skipper added.

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Terming Dhoni the heartbeat of CSK, Fleming said, "He is the heartbeat of CSK, there's no doubt about it. Whether it's performance, guidance or leadership, you run out of things to say about him."

The former New Zealand captain was impressed by the team’s hunger to bounce back after the defeat in their IPL 2021 opener while heaping praise on Man of the Match Deepak Chahar for his figures of 4 for 13 in four overs.

"Really impressed with the way he bounced back after the first game. Without a doubt, when Deepak gets a little bit of swing and a little bit of movement, he is one of the finest around. His ability to swing the ball is one. But his control and skill set is also very high.

"The key is keeping him simple in his plans and just operating in and around the stumps. He is very effective when the ball swings. A great bounce back from a below-par performance in the first game."

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The CSK coach backed opener Ruturaj Gaikwad despite the batsman not being able to get going for a second straight match.

Fleming further backed opener Ruturaj Gaikwad after the youngster endured a shaky start in the 14th edition of the tournament.

"I am happy with the balance we have got in the team. Ruturaj (Gaikwad) is a fine player. He got a good ball in the first match and very difficult conditions today. It wasn't a 220-run wicket today. It was much different.

"Ruturaj was a player we showed faith in last year, and his talent came through. Our philosophy when we pick players and put them in the team is to back them. This combination (Ruturaj-Faf du Plessis) is simply that," he added.

CSK next play Rajasthan Royals in IPL 2021, at the Wankhede in Mumbai on Monday.

 

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