Former India captain Kapil Dev has suggested that Mahendra Singh Dhoni should play domestic cricket before the next season of Indian Premier League, reported PTI.
Dhoni said ahead of CSK’s last match in IPL 2020 that he’ll return for the franchise.
Kapil said that it will be tough for the superstar from Ranchi to perform well if he decides on playing in the IPL without getting any match practice.
Chennai Super Kings were out of IPL playoffs for the first time in 11 appearances and Dhoni, who played competitive cricket for the first time since last year’s World Cup semi-final, scored only 200 runs in 14 games with no half-centuries and a strike rate of 116.
In Dhoni’s IPL career, this was the season with the least number of runs scored, boundaries hit (fours, sixes combined) and balls faced, lowest average, second-lowest strike rate, lowest high score with no half century scored for the first time.
MS Dhoni's IPL batting breakdown
Kapil, who recently underwent an angioplasty after suffering a heart attack, wants the former India captain to play a lot more in the domestic circuit to get his form back.
“If Dhoni decides on playing only IPL every year, then it’’s impossible for him to perform. It’’s not a good thing to talk about age but at his age (39 years), the more he plays, the more his body will be tuned,” Kapil is quoted as telling ABP News.
“If you don’t play any cricket for 10 months a year and suddenly play IPL, you can see what happened. You can always have a season up or down if you have played so much cricket. It has happened to someone like Chris Gayle also,” the World Cup winning former skipper said.
Kapil feels that it’s high time that Dhoni plays some domestic cricket this season.
“He should go back to first-class cricket (could mean domestic List A and T20) and play there.”
It is worth noting that there is no clarity yet on the structure of India’s domestic season for 2020-’21 as well.
The legendary all-rounder made it clear that it will be a challenge for Dhoni given that he has already indicated that he is “definitely not” retiring from the IPL.
“If someone has achieved so much, the dip in form does affect and it becomes a challenge. Let’s see how he comes out of it,” Kapil said.
(With PTI inputs)