Faf du Plessis recalled his early days at Chennai Super Kings after being named the new captain of Royal Challengers Bangalore ahead of the 2022 Indian Premier League (IPL).
Faf pointed out that when he joined Chennai Super Kings in 2011, it was a new culture for himself in terms of captaincy. The new RCB skipper added that he will bring his own style of leadership and not try to be Virat Kohli.
The 37-year-old Du Plessis has been an integral part of the Chennai Super Kings side under Dhoni since 2012 and also played for the now-defunct Rising Pune Supergiants.
“I’m very fortunate to have had the company of some fantastic leaders on my cricket journey. I grew up with Graeme Smith, the best South African leader ever,” the former South African skipper was quoted as saying on the RCB website.
“And then 10 years at MS and Stephen Fleming, two fantastic leaders.
“I think there’s a similarity between MS’s style and my style because we’re both very laid back characters,” Du Plessis said.
“The crazy thing for me is really, when I started at Chennai I had this idea of what captain and leadership looked like.
“And MS was the complete opposite of what I imagined because of my culture in South Africa,” said Du Plessis. “And I came into this environment like this guy was completely different than I thought he was supposed to be.” After an aggressive bidding war between his former franchise CSK and Delhi Capitals, Du Plessis was bought by RCB for a whopping Rs 7 crore bought his job to end the trophy drought for the three-time runner-up.
Du Plessis said he understands the pressure that comes with running an IPL team and would try to follow his own style.
“What taught me was that there are different styles, but it was important that you have to have your own style,” he said of Dhoni’s influence on him.
“Because that’s the thing that always comes through when the pressure is on. So I can’t try to be Virat Kohli because I’m not Virat Kohli. I can’t try to be MS Dhoni,” he said.
“But there are things I’ve learned that have helped me develop and mature my leadership style. So I’m grateful for this trip,” said the new RCB skipper.
“MS (Dhoni) is a fantastic leader and has probably had the most silverware success than any other captain in the world. It was a privilege to be part of this journey,” he concluded.
RCB will open their campaign against Punjab Kings on March 27 in Mumbai.