Robin Uthappa discloses honest conversation: The veteran Indian batsman is all set to play for his sixth Indian Premier League franchise.
Former India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s Chennai Super Kings made the most of the auction for the 14th season of the Indian Premier League by spending a total of INR 17.35 crore on six players.
In addition to buying five Indian players (one capped and four uncapped) and one overseas all-rounder in England’s Moeen Ali in the auction held last month in Chennai, Super Kings had also traded veteran Indian batsman Robin Uthappa with Rajasthan Royals for an undisclosed amount.
Uthappa, 35, who had last played for India during India’s tour of Zimbabwe in 2015, joined CSK on the back of representing five IPL teams across 13 seasons in addition to playing 59 white-ball matches at the highest level.
— Chennai Super Kings (@ChennaiIPL) March 23, 2021
Having scored 4,607 runs in 182 IPL innings at an average and strike rate of 27.92 and 129.99 respectively, Uthappa is the ninth-highest run-scorer in the tournament.
Robin Uthappa discloses honest conversation with MS Dhoni after joining CSK
In a recent interview with ESPNcricinfo, Uthappa disclosed having an “honest” conversation with Dhoni after the deal got finalized. Dhoni, who called him shortly after the trade, made it a point to inform Uthappa that it was the leadership group’s decision to bring him onboard.
“He [MS Dhoni], in fact, called me. He said, ‘I want you to know that I didn’t make the decision about you coming in here. It was actually the decision of the leadership group, which involved the coaches and the CEO’,” Uthappa was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo.
“He also said – and that’s what I love about him – ‘I didn’t want anyone to think that I was the one picking you. I wanted you to get into the team with your own ability and with your own skill. And when it came to me, I said, please ask everybody else in making the decision about you’,” Uthappa said.
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Uthappa, who made his T20I debut under Dhoni during the ICC World Twenty20 2007, played 47 out of his 59 international matches with Dhoni also in the Playing XI. Set to play under Dhoni once again after a nine-year gap, Uthappa will be competing with the likes of Ruturaj Gaikwad, Faf du Plessis, Cheteshwar Pujara, Narayan Jagadeesan and C. Hari Nishaanth for the opener’s role.
“It is amazing, right, when there is that level of honesty. I truly appreciate that. For me, I know that I have gotten there by my own skill, by my own credibility. That is what I love about MS [Dhoni]. You want to play for a leader like that, who gives you that confidence that, ‘Hey, you have come in here by your own credibility. I’ve done nothing’,” Uthappa added.