Over the years, MS Dhoni has built the careers of many uncapped players, helping them hone their skills in the Indian Premier League. The case of Deepak Chahar is a similar one. The pacer, since becoming a mainstay in the CSK team, has gone on to wear the Indian national team jersey. Ahead of the IPL 2023 final, Chahar revealed an interesting tale of Dhoni overruling coach Stephen Fleming’s decision involving him, giving a fine example of how the wicket-keeper batter backs youngsters in the team.
Deepak Chahar first came into Dhoni’s contact when he was roped in by Rising Pune Supergiant in 2016. After RPS’s stay in the tournament came to an end after the conclusion of the 2017 season, Chahar was roped in by the returning Chennai Super Kings which was led by none other than the ‘Thala’.
In the latest episode of Breakfast With Champions, Chahar revealed that Fleming was reluctant to play him from the start of the 2018 season. But, Dhoni was hell-bent on giving the seamer all 14 games.
“Interestingly, Fleming had selected me for my batting than my bowling after I hit five sixes during a practice match. Unfortunately, I suffered a hamstring injury and had to sit out for most of the 2016 season,” Chahar revealed.
“In the 2017 edition, the team’s combination was set, and I got to play a few games. In 2018, CSK picked me in the auction, and Fleming was reluctant to play me, while Mahi bhai disagreed and stated, ‘He will play all the 14 games this season’,” he added.
Chahar also revealed that when the teamsheet for the opener was prepared, Dhoni had written Chahar’s name at the top.
“Our CEO came to me and revealed that when the team was being formed, my name was always written first,” the pacer further said.
Chahar has gone on to become CSK’s go-to bowler in the powerplays, picking wickets at regular intervals for the franchise.