MS Dhoni might not be a resident of Chennai but he is one of the most loved cricketers in the region. It is his eight-year long association with Indian Premier League (IPL) side, Chennai Super Kings (CSK), which has made him popular in the city.
CSK is owned by India Cements, where N Srinivasan is the vice chairman and Managing Director. The former India captain is said to have a close relationship with former BCCI president Srinivasan, and also met with some key officials from the company after India played Australia in the first ODI in Chennai on Sunday (September 17).
Though the company said that the player visited the office, met some officials, clicked selfies with various members, there seems to be more to it.
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With CSK set to make an IPL comeback after two-year absence, there might have been talks about the franchise's interest in keeping him in their side for IPL. Dhoni could also want a reunion as the player is loved in Chennai, and has also helped them achieve tremendous success, helping them win two IPL titles in 2010, 2011 as well.
"It is no secret that CSK want Dhoni but we are still waiting to hear from the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on the way forward for the league." "Pune Mirror" quoted Kasi Viswanath, right-hand man of Srinivasan as saying.
It does not come as a surprise when CSK are interested in getting back Dhoni, but there are certain obstacles as well.
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One does not know how the BCCI are planning forward for the upcoming auction. CSK and Rajasthan Royals (RR) were banned for two years due to their involvement in IPL corruption in 2013, and were replaced by Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) and Gujarat Lions (GL).
The two new entrants will no longer be a part of IPL, which brings into question – what will happen to their players. Dhoni played for RPS in the last two seasons.
Will their players be inducted into the large pool of players for auction or are they planning a separate draft for CSK and RR to pick some players before the auction? The latter could take shape as other teams will also have the option of retaining players.
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As of now, there is no clarity and one will only know about it when the IPL governing council meets and comes up with something official.
Irrespective of what happens, Dhoni will be eyed as first pick by many of the teams, besides CSK.