One of the talking points after Chennai Super Kings lost to Rajasthan Royals by 16 runs in their second match of IPL 2020 on September 22 was Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s batting position at a juncture when CSK were struggling at 77 for four in nine overs, chasing a stiff target of 217. In such a scenario, one would expect Dhoni to demonstrate his calibre as a match-winner, but by the time the CSK skipper walked in at No. 7, the die was cast. Dhoni showed what he was capable of on a sweaty Sharjah evening. In an unbeaten 17-ball 29, Dhoni muscled three towering sixes off pacer Tom Curran’s final over only to incite the obvious question—why didn’t he come in earlier?
Seven years ago, a RR vs CSK match made the headlines for the wrong reasons. That day, Dhoni and some of his teammates’ intent to win the match in Jaipur’s Sawai Mansingh Stadium raised doubts even in the minds of a probe team constituted by the Supreme Court and led by a former chief justice. RR won by five wickets, little knowing that this match would become the centrepiece of the 2013 IPL betting and match-fixing controversy.