09 March 2020
Mumbai: Brushing aside any doubts surrounding him after a break from cricket, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, in a new commercial ahead of the Indian Premier League, has played it cool in his typical fashion.
Chennai Super Kings (CSK) skipper Dhoni is widely regarded as one of the best captains to have played the game with two World Cup and three IPL titles. But many have been wondering if "The Thala" can still lead from the front, especially since he has been out of action since the ODI World Cup in July 2019.
In a new TVC launched by Star Sports and BCCI, Dhoni shuts down his detractors with poise. The commercial shows a couple laughing at a meme on "Thala" Dhoni in an aircraft, only to see him noticing them from the next seat, completely undeterred. Dhoni calmly puts on his headphones, but not before cheekily commenting about the noise around him.
The fan banter which inspired the #KhelBolega campaign was launched by Star Sports in tandem with the BCCI recently. Dhoni has been the cynosure of all eyes during CSK's training camp ahead of their IPL season opener against defending champions Mumbai Indians at the Wankhede Stadium on March 29.
On Saturday, CSK tweeted a picture of Dhoni with the wicketkeeper's gloves with the caption, "I see icy eyes."
In his absence from the Indian team, Rishabh Pant and K.L. Rahul have taken up the wicketkeeping role. Dhoni last played for India in the semifinal of the 2019 World Cup against New Zealand after which he took a sabbatical from competitive cricket.
It is widely expected that his performance in this year's IPL will be pivotal in deciding whether he will be selected in the Indian team that will go to Australia later in the year for the World T20.