July 22, 2024

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File photo of Ruturaj Gaikwad© BCCI

Mumbai Indians batter Suryakumar Yadav took to social media to post a special message for Ruturaj Gaikwad after the youngster was appointed Chennai Super Kings skipper for IPL 2024. The franchise announced on Thursday that Gaikwad will be replacing MS Dhoni as the skipper and it led to a lot of discussion on social media. MS Dhoni has led CSK to the IPL title on five occasions – the joint-most by any captain along with Mumbai Indians’ Rohit Sharma. Suryakumar said on Instagram that Ruturaj will have to fill the big shoes of Dhoni but added that his ‘cool and calm’ nature will be a major asset.

“Can’t deny the fact that you have got big shoes to fill bhauu. But I am sure with your cool and calm nature you will take this teams legacy ahead in style. Wishing you all the love and luck,” he posted.

In a post on X, the Indian Premier League made the announcement a day before CSK take on Royal Challengers Bengaluru. The five-time champions issued a brief statement soon after.

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“MS Dhoni has handed over Chennai Super Kings’ captaincy to Ruturaj Gaikwad ahead of the start of TATA IPL 2024. Ruturaj has been an integral part of Chennai Super Kings since 2019 and has played 52 matches in IPL during this period. The team looks forward to the upcoming season,” said CSK.

There is speculation that Dhoni will retire at the end of the season and therefore the franchise felt the need for a smooth transition in the stalwart’s presence as a player.

Gaikwad, who has played six ODIs and 19 T20s for India, made his CSK debut in 2020 and has gone on to represent the team in 52 games.

“Whatever Dhoni does, it is in the best interest of the team. I got to know of the decision just before the captains’ meeting. You have to respect his decision, it is his call,” CSK CEO Kasi Viswanathan told PTI.

The stylish opener had a memorable run last year, aggregating 590 runs in 16 games at an impressive strike rate of 147.50. His breakout year was 2021 when he amassed 635 runs in 16 games.

(With PTI inputs)

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