The IPL 2023 final witnessed a captivating showdown between the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and the Gujarat Titans, culminating in a thrilling two-day battle due to rain interruptions. In this intense clash, Ravindra Jadeja emerged as the hero, leading CSK to a record-equalling fifth IPL title.
However, it was not just the cricketing brilliance that left a lasting impact: The stunning display of leadership and collaboration, exemplified by the bond between skipper MS Dhoni and Jadeja, added an emotional dimension to their victory.
At the heart of the Chennai Super Kings' success lies the exceptional leadership of MS Dhoni, a captain par excellence. Dhoni's tactical acumen to instill a winning spirit among his teammates has set him apart as one of the greatest captains not only in the tournament but in the history of cricket.
The ‘Thala’ impact
His ability to foster a winning spirit and unite his teammates has been the cornerstone of the team's achievement. The 2023 IPL final displayed Dhoni's emotional investment in the game, as he could not contain his tears of joy when Jadeja sealed the victory.
His tears were a poignant reflection of the profound gratitude he held for his team's relentless efforts. Since the inaugural edition in 2008, MS Dhoni has consistently excelled in various dimensions of the IPL, leaving an indelible mark.
Grooming young cricketing talent
Sportspersons can sometimes find it hard to pass the mantle on, but not Dhoni. Throughout his career as an international cricketer and during his time at the CSK, Dhoni has platformed and championed young talent. Be it grooming Virat Kohli to be the future captain of the Indian cricket team and supporting him during his out-of-form phase, literally changing the game for Rohit Sharma by making him an opening batsman or platforming Matheesha Pathirana’s jaw-dropping talent in the IPL, the credit goes to Dhoni’s belief in the players.
A great leadership quality is not just being in control of the present, but having a firm eye on the future – future of your team, your organisation – and actively working towards the dream every single day.
Calm and composed leadership style
It is no secret that Dhoni stays cool as a cucumber even in the most intense situations. As opposed to a lot of sportspersons who let their emotions run wild, more often than not losing the grip of an already critical solution, Dhoni seems to go into an even more quiet, controlled state of mind. By keeping him emotions in check, he is able to map out various possible outcomes and the steps required to reach the necessary goals – an amazing quality that every leader must possess.
Keeping the standards high
A true leader leads by example. And Dhoni has done just that throughout his IPL career. His professionalism and sheer dedication to the game of cricket has always set high standards for not only his teammates but every single player in the IPL. He has emphasised the importance of discipline and teamwork, which influenced other teams and players to raise their performance levels.
The tearful embrace between MS Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja will forever be etched in the annals of IPL history. Despite Dhoni's early dismissal, his emotions erupted uncontrollably as Jadeja played two extraordinary shots to secure the win.
As social media erupted with ecstasy and frenzy over the IPL 2023 final, cricketing legend Sachin Tendulkar took to Twitter to express his thoughts on the enthralling contest. He hailed the finish as one of the most enthralling IPL seasons ever and praised both Chennai Super Kings and Gujarat Titans for their fierce battle.
The IPL 2023 final can serve as a reminder that success in cricket, like in any field, is not just about individual talent but also about teamwork and the ability to come together as a cohesive unit.