Afghanistan wicketkeeper batter Rahmanullah Gurbaz revealed the team he aspires to represent in the Indian Premier League (IPL). Rahmanullah Gurbaz expressed his desire to play for the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) team under the leadership of the legendary MS Dhoni.
Rahmanullah Gurbaz made his IPL debut for the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) franchise in the 2023 season. The right-handed batter scored 227 runs in 11 matches at a disappointing average of 20.64 and a decent strike rate of 133.53, with his best score being 81 runs.
The Kolkata-based franchise retained the Afghanistan cricketer ahead of the IPL 2024 season, positioning Rahmanullah Gurbaz alongside KS Bharat as one of the two wicketkeeper-batters. He is expected to face competition with Jason Roy for the opening position.
MS Dhoni Is The Reason I Started Playing Cricket – Rahmanullah Gurbaz
In a recent conversation with Sportsnow, Rahmanullah Gurbaz highlighted the influence of MS Dhoni on his cricketing journey, stating that the former Indian captain was the reason he started playing cricket and took up wicketkeeping.
“Honestly in the IPL, every team is the best team. The quality level is high but then I really wish to play under MS Dhoni because he’s the best. He is the reason I started playing cricket and wicketkeeping also,” Gurbaz said.
Dhoni, who led the Super Kings to their record fifth IPL trophy last year, is gearing up to captain CSK once more in the upcoming 2024 IPL season. He has commenced his training sessions in the nets and has also resumed gym workouts in preparation for the event.
Dhoni has played 250 IPL matches, scoring 5082 runs at an average of 38.79 and a strike rate of 135.92. Before 2023, he led the CSK to triumph in the IPL in 2010, 2011, 2018, and 2021, as well as clinching the Champions League Twenty20 crown twice – in 2010 and 2014.
Dhoni also achieved a unique feat by winning all three limited-overs ICC trophies, the T20 World Cup in 2007, the ODI World Cup in 2011, and the Champions Trophy in 2013.
Can’t Compare Other Leagues With IPL – Rahmanullah Gurbaz
When asked about what distinguishes the IPL from other leagues, Rahmanullah Gurbaz stated that the Indian tournament stands out due to its superior cricketing quality and the electrifying atmosphere fostered by enthusiastic crowds.
“You can’t compare other leagues with IPL because IPL’s quality is higher than others. Be it Cricket or Crowd, everything is superb. It’s everybody’s dream to play in the IPL and improve their skill,” Gurbaz added.
The 22-year-old last represented the Afghanistan team in the three-match T20I series against India last month. The wicketkeeper-batter registered scores of 23 (28) and 14 (9) in the first two T20Is, followed by a stellar half-century in the third and final game of the series.
The Afghan batter is currently playing for the Dubai Capitals (DC) team in the second edition of the International League T20 (ILT20) league. The young opening cricketer scored 146 runs in eight innings at a disappointing average of 18.25, with a best score of 81 runs.