CSA League: CSK-owned Johannesburg could sign MS Dhoni as mentor
According to the latest reports, CSA T20 league's CSK-owned Johannesburg franchise could rope in Mahendra Singh Dhoni as a mentor for the inaugural edition. However, it is understood that the former Indian captain is yet to receive a go-ahead from the BCCI. Johannesburg, the sister franchise of Indian Premier League's Chennai Super Kings (CSK), might also sign Stephen Fleming as head coach.
- As per a report in Insidesport, Dhoni could serve as mentor of the Johannesburg franchise if the BCCI permits him.
- The CSK management is yet to give an official update regarding the same.
- Although Dhoni retired from international cricket in 2020, he competed in IPL 2022 for CSK.
- It is understood that the 41-year-old would lead the Yellow Army in the 2023 season too.
"You will know the official name by this week. We are currently in talks with Stephen as we can't think of any better person carrying forward the CSK legacy in a new venture. Dhoni's involvement will depend on BCCI's clearance. He won't be playing but could be in some role if BCCI permits," a CSK official told Insidesport.
The Dhoni-Fleming duo has been together since the inaugural IPL season (2008). Fleming featured CSK as a player in 2008 before taking up the coaching role in 2009. He has been the franchise's head coach ever since. In 2016 and 2017, Fleming worked with Rising Pune Supergiant. Dhoni and Fleming have guided CSK to four IPL titles (2010, 2011, 2018, and 2021).
Earlier this year, a report in ESPNcricinfo, stated that Dhoni will lead CSK in IPL 2023. Ahead of IPL 2022, Ravindra Jadeja had replaced Dhoni as CSK's captain. However, Jadeja had handed the captaincy back to Dhoni midway through the season. Dhoni is the most successful IPL captain in terms of match-wins. He has a tally of 123 wins (most) in 209 matches.
In another development, Johannesburg signed South African cricketer Faf du Plessis for the inaugural edition of the CSA T20 League. The 38-year-old is one of their marquee signings in the tourney. Interestingly, English all-rounder Moeen Ali has also been acquired by the franchise. The T20 tournament introduced by Cricket South Africa (CSA) is likely to start next year in January-February.