One of the greatest captains in the game of cricket, MS Dhoni is in the ‘final phase’ of his career, as he himself suggested. Though it isn’t known if the Chennai Super Kings skipper plans to play another season in the Indian Premier League, fellow cricketers have been paying their tributes to the ‘Thala’. In an exclusive chat with NDTV, Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper Faf du Plessis, who spent most of his IPL career playing for the Chennai franchise, had nothing but praise for the CSK skipper.
Du Plessis said that he is lucky to have earned from some influential leaders, including the likes of Graeme Smith, Stephen Fleming, and MS Dhoni.
“Very lucky to have played with leaders that I could learn from. When I was playing for South Africa, Graeme Smith was the captain there and then my first year moving to Chennai, I didn’t play one game that year but my sole purpose from the season was to learn. I would be sitting next to Stephen Fleming, asking him questions. A lot about leadership, more than he would’ve expected someone to ask,” he said during the release of his book Faf Through Fire.
Faf didn’t get much playing time in his first season at CSK. While picking Fleming’s brain was one thing that South African was eager to do, he also kept a close eye on Dhoni and the way he led his team.
“I was just observing MS from a distance. I was stealing from my eyes, my years about why he is so successful, what makes him so successful. Even at that stage, one of the most successful international and domestic captains in the world of cricket. It was a privilege to learn from someone like that. But I think also something that I picked up really early on was the importance of being the leader that you are. I could never captain like MS or Virat or Graeme Smith or Stephen Fleming. I find my own way but you can look at things and incorporate from other people,” he revealed.
Du Plessis also revealed the ‘biggest one’ he learned from Dhoni which was keeping a cool head just the way the former India skipper did.
“Something that came from MS is how calm he is and I think that’s something that I have shown through my leadership as well. I am always trying to make sure that I am very clear with my players. You give your absolute best and move on. So, I think that will be the biggest one I picked from MS. He is called captain cool for a reason. There’s no greater guy to learn about being cool than MS Dhoni,” he concluded.
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