Mahendra Singh Dhoni – Our Thala – The name itself evokes so many emotions in a CSK fan. Right from the first season, he’s the one person we could all connect to. The one person who has become our Thala. Chennai has become his adopted city. Nobody can forget Dhoni’s emotional press conference when CSK came back after two years. What a fairytale comeback it has been so far. Three close finishes where we have been at the edge of our seat till the last ball.
Dhoni is no longer what he used to be. The big finishes are becoming very rare but CSK fans waited for that one Dhoni innings which could bring back old memories. There have been calls for him to retire but CSK believed in its favourite player. There were chants of Dhoni Dhoni and applause all the three times he walked into the crease. That tells us how much our Thala Dhoni meant to CSK fans.
There is a reason why Dhoni is Thala for CSK fans. He still has it in him to be one of the best finishers of all times. He still makes us bite our nails and wait in anticipation for a victory. That’s Thala Dhoni for you.
Dhoni tweet about CSK fans calling him as “Thala”
Gud win today,nice to hear fans in chennai calling me 'THALA' ,off to bed now for a nice 10 hour sleep so it will b a late gud morning msg
— Mahendra Singh Dhoni (@msdhoni) April 25, 2013
Time catches up with the best of us. We age. The body isn’t as agile as it used to be. The shots don’t connect like they used to. But somehow there is always that feel of pulling it off one more impossible win when Dhoni walks to the crease And when he does bat like he used to it is priceless.
Yesterday was one such night. 79 priceless runs. He walked in with intent and got going right from the star and once Ambati Rayudu got out and the game became impossible we got to see the Dhoni of old with some big sixes which made the opposition fear us. Despite the back injury he got us almost close. If only one more shot had connected it would have been bye bye Punjab.
What does it take to be someone like MSD? Keeping wickets day and day out, keeping the mind switched on, running like a hare and taking the bails off by defying time every time a batsman steps out. To do all of this and soak in the pressure and delivering 9 times out of ten is special. But what is even more remarkable is the ability to remain detached and move on once the moment is done and dusted.
How do you switch off from something which has been part and parcel of your daily life? Sometimes I wonder if there’s an automatic on-off button fitted within the mind of the great finisher. But that’s what makes him what he is.
The hope of a great heist, the fear in the eyes of the opposition, the faith to fight on till the very end and shutting down all the frenzy once the moment lapses. The trait of a great champion. The trait of our Thala Dhoni. The greatest showman of all times.
Just a reminder that Dhoni has remained not out in 15 successful chases. Dhoni has another couple of years left in him so let’s enjoy and celebrate such innings while they come and say Whistle podu for our Thala Dhoni and CSK.