CSKThere has been constant speculation over whether MS Dhoni will retire or not, following his break from cricket since the World Cup ended. Dhoni has played no international cricket since then, but India's coach Ravi Shastri quelled fears that the talismanic wicketkeeper was going to hang up his gloves.
"It all depends on when he starts playing and how he is playing during the IPL... The IPL becomes a massive tournament [for Dhoni] because it could be last tournament after which your 15 [for the World T20] is decided." Shastri said.
Shastri, then, believes that Dhoni is still in the selectors' thoughts. But while this is good news for fans of the batsman in national colours, CSK fans have even more reason to rejoice.
Dhoni has been a mainstay for the IPL franchise, serving as its marquee player and captain since the IPL inaugural season (barring the two seasons that CSK was suspended), and he has led the team to the playoff rounds in every single season thus far, and to the title 3 times. Suffice to say that Chennai reveres MS Dhoni.
While Dhoni is slated to play for them in 2020, he has now said that he will continue to play in the IPL even after 2021. In fact, he is so devoted to his team that he has requested that he be released by them for the auction next year, so that CSK can match any offer that is made for him. Given his age, he is likely to receive much lower offers than the 15 crores CSK shelled out for him, and by asking to be released he is guaranteeing that he will be paid less.
This means that he wants to return to CSK, but not to do so at a cost that would cripple the team in terms of recruiting other players. It is a sacrifice Dhoni is keen to make for the franchise he loves.
If there existed any CSK fans who didn't love Dhoni before, this act should melt even their ice-cold hearts.