Before the start of the just-concluded season of Indian Premier League, Chennai Super Kings faced criticism from several quarters for picking several senior players who were on the wrong side of 30. However, MS Dhoni, 36-year old himself, stuck by them and the end result was their third Indian Premier League title.
Fittingly, it was the 36-year old Shane Watson who fired the team to the title. The Australian played a blinder as Chennai Super Kings thrashed Sunrisers Hyderabad by 8 wickets in the final. Watson scored an unbeaten 117 off just 57 balls with the help of 11 fours and 8 sixes.
The Super Kings have shut the critics up with the title triumph. And they have also received some encouraging words from none other than Bollywood star Salman Khan.
Doing on-air Hindi commentary, Irfan Pathan asked Anil Kapoor and Salman about their thoughts on Super Kings being called a team of ‘old men’.
Salman, who is 52 himself, quickly replied to Pathan, “What are you even saying!? No one retires at the age of 30!”
Meanwhile, speaking after the win, Dhoni said that what matters is not the age, but the fitness.
“We talked a lot about age but what matters is the fitness. Rayudu for example is 33, he’s someone who is fit, covers a lot of ground. Even if he plays a few games where he spends a lot of time in the ground and in the field, he never complains. So, it is the fitness that really matters more than the age aspect. What captains want is players who move well in the field. It doesn’t matter which year a player is born in. Whether you are 19 or 20 – you have to be agile. You have to accept your shortcomings. For example if I push Watson to stop a single, there is a very good chance that he’ll burst his hamstring and won’t be available for the next game. So what you tell yourselves is that they have to commit and try, but there’s no point getting injured for a single. No plans to celebrate as of now. We are going to Chennai tomorrow, meet a few people, the fans and some people who are close to the franchise. But we’ll have a get-together in the hotel and celebrate,” he said.