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MS Dhoni will be back in the field today after 436 days

The memories of that ‘Martin Guptill direct hit’ still remain fresh. MS Dhoni, known for hiding emotions behind his poker face, trudged back to the pavilion, this time with his body language telling the story of India’s World Cup heartbreak. In the semi-final against New Zealand, Dhoni tried to do a Dhoni but he was not able to pull it off.

A year and hundreds of speculative stories later, MS Dhoni sang his old favourite ‘main pal do pal ka shayar’ as he announced retirement from international cricket in his own imitable style.

436 days after his last competitive outing and 34 days after bidding goodbye to international cricket, MS Dhoni returns to the cricket field. The 39-year-old is back as Chennai Super Kings gear up to face Mumbai Indians in the opening match of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 in Abu Dhabi on Saturday.

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436 days feels like an eternity as a lot has changed in the world since that fateful run-out in Manchester. When MS Dhoni walks out, leading the Chennai Super Kings in Abu Dhabi, there won’t be a sea of yellow chanting his name from the stands. Only empty stands will greet the returning Super King.

Nonetheless, the off-field buzz has been hitting the roof. Ardent MS Dhoni fans have come up with tributes and countdowns ahead of the much-anticipated IPL 2020 opener. They couldn’t have asked for a better match-up to mark the occasion as Dhoni and CSK take on their arch-rivals Mumbai Indians.

Dhoni trained with the Territorial Army in Jammu and Kashmir right after the World Cup. During the long sabbatical, the former captain holidayed on snow-capped mountains, did some catching practice with his pet dogs, assembled bikes, and even drove tractors but stayed away from the 22 yards.

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