MS Dhoni "Could Definitely Play Next Year": CSK Teammate's Big Statement On Skipper's IPL Future
Moeen Ali feels Mahendra Singh Dhoni "could definitely" feature in the IPL next year
England's seasoned all-rounder Moeen Ali feels Mahendra Singh Dhoni "could definitely" feature in the IPL next year, playing down the widespread supposition that the ongoing season will be the Chennai Super Kings captain's last appearance in the T20 league. At 41, the World Cup-winning former India skipper continues to attract massive following across the length and breadth of the country, and last week came close to lifting CSK to a win over Rajasthan Royals, with batting that reminded everyone of his best years.
"He could definitely play again next year," Moeen was quoted as saying by 'ESPNcricinfo'.
"The way he's playing, I don't think it'll be his batting that stops him from playing, even if it's in two, three years' time.
"I wasn't surprised at how he played (against Rajasthan). I've been watching him in the nets, and he's been batting unbelievably well.
"It's just amazing to see from somebody at that age. It's not easy when you come in so late - people forget that a lot of the time, but that's what makes him so good at his role." Moeen also drew a parallel between Dhoni and his former England white-ball skipper Eoin Morgan, under whom the team won its first 50-over World Cup, in 2019.
"They're very similar in how clear and calm they are, but also very different. Their interests and all that are very different.
"The biggest difference? MS does most of his captaincy on gut feel, on the day. It could be a bit like that with Morgs too, but he was also very data-driven. But they're both so calm. In terms of mannerisms, they are very, very, very similar.
"The best way I could describe MS is that he's a very normal person. Obviously he has a massive following but there's no big-headedness or anything like that. He's very humble. You can talk to him about anything... he's just as you see him on TV: approachable, calm." The 35-year-old spin bowling all-rounder, who had retired from Test cricket, is using the IPL to work on his bowling and "getting myself ready" for the World Cup, which India is hosting later this year.
He said it is likely to be his last ODI World Cup.
"It's going to be really important that I do bowl, and that I get my bowling up to the best place it can be," Moeen said.
"It's more than likely going to be my last 50-over World Cup, so I want to make sure it's a good one - both for myself and for the team. We want to defend the title, and spin could play a massive role in the World Cup."