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IPL 2024: Nobody gives you a discount for age: Dhoni

May 21, 2024 12:04 IST
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IMAGE: Mahendra Singh Dhoni, 42, said is it is tough to maintain his fitness as his only tournament in the year is the IPL. Photograph: BCCI

Chennai Super Kings talisman Mahendra Singh Dhoni said there is no 'discount for age' and he has to dedicate a lot of effort towards training and his eating habits to compete in the highly-competitive IPL against much younger and fitter players.

Dhoni, 42, said is it is tough to maintain his fitness as his only tournament in the year is the IPL, having already retired from international and domestic cricket.


"The toughest thing is... I am not playing cricket throughout the year. So I have to be fit. Once I come, you are competing against youngsters who are fit and playing international cricket," Dhoni was quoted as saying in a video on Dubai Eye 103.8 YouTube channel on Monday

"Professional sport is not easy, nobody gives you a discount for age. If you want to play, you have to be as fit as the other guy. Age does not really give that grace to you. So, eating habits, a bit of training and all those things are there. Social media, thankfully, I am not on social media, so there's less distraction."

Dhoni said after quitting international cricket in 2019 after a busy career of nearly 15 years, he got more time with his family, while also pursuing other passions like farming, motorbikes and vintages.

"Once I quit international cricket, I wanted to spend a bit more time with my family. But, at that same time, to be mentally active, to have that passion to stay focussed -- for me, I love farming, for me it is the motorbikes, I have started getting into vintage cars. These things de-stress me. If am stressed, I would maybe go to the garage, spend a couple of hours over there and I will just be fine, I would come back," he said.

The twice World Cup winning captain also revealed why he adores his pet dogs so much.

"I have always felt growing up with a pet, whether it is a cat or a dog... I prefer dogs though. They have unconditional love towards you. I have said this in a previous interview, even if I lose a game and come back, my dog greets me the same way."

Following his knee surgery last year, Dhoni has sought to bat lower down the order in IPL 2024 to manage his workload. He played a few entertaining cameos to smash 161 runs at a strike rate of 220, in what could turn out to be his final season of IPL.

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