Inside the stadium, the fervent followers of the World Cup-winning skipper donned yellow CSK jerseys, brandished CSK flags, and reverberated the chants of ‘Dhoni Dhoni’ as Ruturaj Gaikwad and Devon Conway stepped onto the field to bat. The DJ even replaced DC’s ‘Roar Macha’ with the CSK anthem.
“Dhoni khel raha hai aaj, aakhri match khel raha yahan, support karna toh banta hai (Dhoni is playing today, he’s playing his last match here, you have to support him,),” expressed Rohit Bajaj, an ardent fan sporting CSK’s number seven jersey. Bajaj’s statement encapsulated the sentiment shared by numerous fans in the stadium.
Dhoni fans at Kotla. (TOI Photo)
Amidst the sea of yellow, it was difficult to spot the handful of fans donning the blue attire, representing the home team.
There was a moment of uncertainty when it seemed like Dhoni might not get a chance to bat. However, when he walked in at number four, the crowd erupted in euphoria. Although the wicketkeeper-batter didn’t unleash powerful shots, the sheer presence of Dhoni in the middle brought immense joy to the spectators.
This exuberant support for Dhoni was witnessed across various venues throughout the season, including the iconic Eden Gardens, further reinforcing the belief that this might indeed be Dhoni’s last IPL.
On Friday, fans eagerly waited for hours at the stadium in anticipation of catching a glimpse of Dhoni, a testament to his immense popularity and impact on the game.
(With inputs from PTI)