“If you can get him” – CSK CEO reveals what captain MS Dhoni told him to buy Ajinkya Rahane in IPL 2023 Auction

Ajinkya Rahane had never been known for his prowess in T20 cricket. Over the course of 14 IPL seasons, he scored 4074 runs with an average strike rate of 120.7, including 30 half-century or better scores.


However, between 2020 and 2022, he played 16 innings with a strike rate of just above 100. Despite Kolkata Knight Riders having spent a large amount on him at the auction, he was only given a single game in the 15th season of the IPL.

Therefore, Rahane was not considered a major player going into the auction for the 2023 season. Despite this, Chennai Super Kings showed confidence in the experienced cricketer and were ultimately rewarded for it in a stunning manner.


Ajinkya Rahane has been in exceptional form during the IPL 2023 season, scoring 224 runs with two half-centuries in just six innings. He has achieved this at an impressive strike rate of 189.83, which is the second-highest among batters who have faced at least 100 balls this season.

His performances have been so impressive that he even earned a Player of the Match award. As a result of his contributions, Chennai Super Kings are now considered one of the top contenders to make the playoffs in IPL 2023.

Ajinkya Rahane’s remarkable performances with the bat have undoubtedly been a huge asset for Chennai Super Kings in IPL 2023. However, CSK CEO Kasi Viswanathan gave credit to skipper MS Dhoni for making the crucial decision to pick Rahane in the auction ahead of the season.


During a strategy meeting, Dhoni had urged the management to consider selecting Rahane, and his words were instrumental in the final decision. This choice has clearly paid off for CSK, as Rahane’s contributions have been crucial to their success in the tournament.

According to Viswanathan, MS Dhoni was clear in his instructions during the strategy meeting before the IPL 2023 auction. “Nothing like it if you can get him,” Dhoni had said when asked about Rahane, which convinced the CSK management to bid for him. Although CSK were able to acquire Rahane at his base price of INR 50 lakh, there were no other bidders for him, indicating the risk involved in selecting him.

Furthermore, the decision to pick Rahane was not without its risks. Rahane’s recent domestic form had been below par, as he only scored 112 runs in eight innings at a strike rate of 117.89 during the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. However, the move has paid off handsomely for both Rahane and CSK, thanks to the wisdom and foresight of MS Dhoni.

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