Chennai Super Kings will face off against Gujarat Titans in the opening match of IPL 2023 on Friday at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. After a disappointing performance in the last season where they finished ninth in the ten-team table, CSK will be looking to prove themselves and make a strong comeback. They managed to secure just eight points from 14 matches, with four wins and 10 defeats. The team led by MS Dhoni will be aiming to put in a consistent display this time around and challenge for the title.
However, ahead of the tournament opener, there are concerns over the availability of CSK skipper Dhoni. Fans and experts alike are eagerly awaiting an update on Dhoni’s fitness as he has been struggling with an injured knee that he sustained during a practice session in Ahmedabad.
Will Dhoni be available?
Recent reports suggest that MS Dhoni‘s fitness remains a concern for the Chennai Super Kings, ahead of their opening match against Gujarat Titans in IPL 2023. During an intra-squad practice match on Monday, Dhoni was reportedly hesitant to bat and was seen sitting with a kneecap. When he eventually did come out to bat, he seemed to be struggling to run and was seen limping on several occasions. There were even instances where he paused mid-way and limped to the crease.
In addition to concerns over his batting, Dhoni also did not take up the wicketkeeping role during the practice match. This has raised further questions about his fitness and his ability to play a full part in the upcoming IPL season.
However, when the team’s CEO Kasi Viswanathan was asked whether Dhoni would play or not, he affirmed that Dhoni was 100% fit to play. “As far as I am concerned, the skipper is 100 percent playing. I don’t know about any other development.”, Kasi told PTI.
In Dhoni’s absence, CSK will not only have to look for a captain but also for a wicketkeeper. However, that does not seem to be much of a problem for them as they have several wicketkeeping options in the form of Ruturaj Gaikwad, Devon Conway, and Ambati Rayudu. Ben Stokes or Ravindra Jadeja could captain the team for the first game.