Chennai Super Kings throwdown specialist Kondappa Raj Palani has shared his first meeting with skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, days after the wicket-keeper announced his retirement from international cricket. MS retired on August 15 before the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 season.
In an interview on the Chennai Super Kings website, Kondappa Raj Palani revealed that MS Dhoni asked him to give throwdowns. He added that the net bowlers were talking about Dhoni’s retirement. Palani shared,
“The first time, the camp started when Dhoni retired. I saw him for the first time then. He asked if you were the throwers. He asked me to throw balls at him. The team was pleased after that. The net bowlers were speaking about his retirement. After two or three weeks, he came to play sidearm. Everybody was arriving.”
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He asked me to play naturally – Kondappa Raj Palani on MS Dhoni’s advice
Kondappa Raj Palani further also shared his experience of bowling to MS Dhoni in the nets for the first time. The throwdown specialist revealed that he started off with two wides and a full toss. After which, the CSK captain walked up to him and asked him to play naturally.
“Fleming, Hussey, and everyone said Dhoni was coming and asked me to bowl carefully. The first two balls were wides. The next ball was a full toss. Dhoni came to me and said ‘Stop looking at me and bowl’. He asked me to play naturally. I then started bowling wherever he wanted and then he was very happy. He started addressing me every day since with my name,” Palani said.
The Chennai Super Kings could not play make much of an impact in the ongoing Indian Premier League 2022 season. They ranked ninth on the points table with just eight points from fourteen games and failed to qualify for the playoffs.