MS Dhoni Chennai Super Kings (CSK) have firmed up plans to get a jump on their Indian Premier League rivals by arriving in the UAE for the 13th edition of the tournament early - and they could be here as soon as next week.
Gulf News reported last month that India hero Dhoni and CSK were planning to come into town early to set up their preparatory camp for the competition.
Now it seems they are pretty much ready to go and are awaiting governmental clearance to travel on a chartered jet to the UAE.
This year’s IPL was slated to commence from March 29 but the tournament was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Recently, the IPL Governing Council chairman Brijesh Patel had confirmed that the 13th edition of the mega event will commence on September 19 in the UAE.
As per a report in ESPNcricinfo, CSK players have been asked to report to Chennai first, following which they will leave for Dubai via a charter flight only after approval from the Indian government - and could arrive as early as August 10.
The IPL Governing Council will meet on August 2 to finalise the schedule and other key arrangements for the tournament. Also, the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) around securing eight teams for 51 days across three venues will be formally established in that meeting.
CSK, who have the oldest squad in the IPL, are looking for at least month’s preparation before ahead of the tournament.
Before the coronavirus pandemic, CSK were the first team to start their training camp in March. Senior players such as Suresh Raina and Ambati Rayudu had begun training their training in December 2019.