Why is MS Dhoni batting down the order for CSK? Insider reveals reason in reports

MS Dhoni has been in brilliant form with the bat but also criticized for batting lower down the order this season.

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The atmosphere in the stadiums has been electric every time MS Dhoni has come out to bat this season.

MS Dhoni has been in excellent hitting form in IPL 2024. The 42-year-old veteran is getting the limited number of balls to face but has made sure to make the most of them. Dhoni has scored 110 runs so far at a strike rate of 224.48.

But despite some extraordinary cameos, Dhoni has been criticized for batting lower down the order. Dhoni is usually slotted to bat at No. 7 or No. 8 in the team sheet. But in Chennai Super Kings' last match against Punjab Kings at Dharamsala, Dhoni came to bat at No. 9, even below Shardul Thakur.

The move did not go down well with the experts and the viewers who wanted Dhoni to bat up the order given his striking form. Former India offspinner Harbhajan Singh even said that rather than batting Dhoni at No. 9, CSK should drop him and play an extra bowler.

Why is MS Dhoni batting down the order for CSK?

According to TOI, Dhoni is having a muscle tear and he cannot bat for too long. This is the main reason why he is not coming to bat up the order. The tear happened in the early part of this IPL and had the team's second wicketkeeper - Devon Conway, been available, Dhoni might have thought of giving himself a break.

"We are virtually playing with our ‘B' team. Those who are criticizing Dhoni don't know the sacrifice that he is doing for this team," a source close to the developments said to the TOI.

"He has been a guiding light for new captain Ruturaj Gaikwad, who has done reasonably well. As far as Dhoni is concerned, Gaikwad's captaincy is "still a work in progress", but even if the team doesn't make the play-offs, he won't be removed from captaincy. He is giving his best and we believe we will go much beyond just making the play-offs," the source further added.

According to the source, Dhoni is taking medicines and playing through pain to minimize the running. Although he has been advised to rest by the doctors, but Dhoni is still playing as he doesn't have a choice because of the ongoing injury problems in CSK team.

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Dhoni had played the entire IPL 2023 with a knee injury that had to be operated just after CSK won the IPL title last year. It was earlier said the knee is completely healed now but the muscle tear has severely minimalised his movements on the ground. During practice, the wicketkeeper-batter is not doing any running at all and his entire training session is based around hitting the ball out of the park.

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