When the Indian Premier League started this year, it was a relief for two main reasons: The comeback of cricket and the comeback of Dhoni.
It made sense too. Since the World Cup last year, a pandemic happened, a retirement happened and it was just good to know that the sport we love so much will be played again and its biggest ambassador will be taking the lead.
THAT didn't go as well as planned. CSK, under Dhoni's leadership, has been performing far from ideal and really needs to turn things around if they want to make it any further in the tournament.
Given their history, I wouldn't rule that out, but for now, the biggest takeaway is Dhoni's wicket-keeping skills, which somehow seem to be getting better with each passing day.
These instances prove the same:
1. This catch from the team's match against KKR on October 7.
It was the last over of KKR's innings and Dhoni made some gesture to bowler Dwayne Bravo. While it was not clear what he had said, Bravo seemed to have taken his advice, because the ball hit batsman Shivam Mavi's bat and flew behind the stumps.
2. Two attempts and two dives later, Dhoni became the wicket-keeper with the most number of catches (104) in the IPL. He surpassed Dinesh Karthik to make this record.
Most catches as keeper in #IPL:— CricTracker (@Cricketracker) October 7, 2020
104 - MS Dhoni
103 - Dinesh Karthik
66 - Parthiv Patel
65 - Naman Ojha
I dont think there any other wicket keeps in India, who can do things that Ms Dhoni is able to do at the age of 40.— Nikhil Prathapani (@nikhilkp93) October 7, 2020
Respect 💪 #KKRvCSK
In total, he took 4 catches in this particular match and affected one run-out. Which, by all standards, is an excellent performance.
3. Before this, on September 25, he had dismissed Shreyas Iyer on a Sam Curran delivery with this beautiful 8-foot-long dive.
My favorite #StarMoment of the day Caught by Dhoni. MS files to his right and takes a superb catch.— Veerraj Chowdhary (@Kvr_Chowdhary) September 25, 2020
Match : CSK VS DC
18.6 over#TVSStaRcityplus @TVSStarCityPlus #MSDhoni#StarMoment @TVSStarCityPlus pic.twitter.com/zjQizMVtIl
Dhoni takes a Blunder— Anubhav Anand (@A_noob_hub) September 25, 2020
What a catch to Get Shreyas Iyer out#CSKvDC
Dhoni's catch to dismiss Shreyas Iyer. Amazing. #IPL2020— Ajatshatru Rawat (@AjatshatruR) September 25, 2020
4. This reminds me of something similar that happened last year when he almost got Shreyas Iyer out with a lightning-fast stumping (0.12 seconds, to be exact). Things didn't turn out to be as the skipper would have wanted but man, were they close?
5. This was before he finally got him in 0.16 seconds and his teammate Chris Morris in 0.12 seconds in THE SAME MATCH within a span of THREE BALLS.
Dhoni and the stumpings. A spinner's love story.— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) May 1, 2019
6. I mean, it's like a sin, stepping out of the crease when Dhoni is keeping: Something David Warner learned the hard way last year when this happened.
Look at that. One almost feels bad for the batsmen. Is there no room for a mistake?
No, there isn't.
7. For instance, this blink-and-you-miss-it catch from IPL 2019.
8. And this stunning stumping of Prithvi Shaw during a recent match between Chennai and Delhi Capitals.
Match No.3 @TVSStarCityPlus 25/09/2020 Match Between CSK vs DC— Rahul Ramrao Joshi (@RAHULDADA024) September 25, 2020
Piyush Chawala Bowling Over No.12 & Ball Number was
02 On Strike Batsman was prithvi Shaw dhoni stumped & it's #Starmoment Bcoz This Stumping Not possible for Anyone wicket keeper #Match3 #MSDhoni #TVSStaRcityplus pic.twitter.com/wYoQ9K5vcK
By then, Shaw had already set the tone of batting for Delhi, but Dhoni's stumping was a reminder of the good old days when stepping out of the crease was a risk for batsmen every time.