MS Dhoni is not referred to as ‘Captain Cool’ for only his calm demeanour on the cricket field. He is also renowned for his stylish looks. Over the years, Dhoni has experimented with a number of snazzy hairstyles, wooing his fans. Ahead of IPL 2021, his bald look turned heads but it ended up being for a ‘commercial’ purpose. With the latest IPL season all set to begin, we look back at various avatars MSD has donned for CSK over the years.
1. IPL 2008 – The summer cut
CSK fans could not see Dhoni in his long-haired avatar as the IPL began in 2008, a year after the Ranchi lad with long locks led India to a T20 World Cup triumph in South Africa. By the time IPL 2008 began, MSD had gotten rid of his long hair. He was now sporting a sober hairstyle with short, trimmed hair. The volume of hair was less on the sides and prominent on the nape and crown. It was the perfect summer cut for a hot season ahead.
2. IPL 2011 – Bold and Bald
IPL 2011 kicked off just a few days after Dhoni had led India to triumph in the 50-over World Cup. Following India’s memorable triumph, Dhoni again stunned India by shaving off his head. His clean-shaven look was unveiled as he posed with the World Cup trophy in front of Gateway of India in Mumbai. Apparently, Dhoni made a commitment to shave his head before a deity before the World Cup got underway. He thus went into IPL 2011 with a bald look. The look proved to be lucky as CSK went on to win the trophy that season, defeating RCB in the final.
3. IPL 2013 – The Mohawk look
During IPL and CSK’s campaign in CLT20 2013, Dhoni again surprised fans with his new look. This time, he was seen in a funky Mohawk. A Mohawk is a punk-inspired hairstyle that’s often preferred by gents with a rebellious attitude. Dhoni’s new avatar again brought good luck. Dhoni’s hairdo was compared to Italian footballer Mario Balotelli, who also sported a similar hairstyle.
4. IPL 2018 – The Viking cut
For IPL 2018, CSK’s ‘Thala’ again modified his haircut. Dhoni’s latest fancy look was pretty similar to Mohawk, where the sides of the head are shaven. However, his hairstylist Sapna Bhavnani revealed on social media that it was not a Mohawk. She took to Twitter and explained:
“It’s not a Mohawk. It’s called the Viking! And like one, he will lead. #dhoni @msdhoni #WhistlePodu #roar @madOwothair.”
With the Viking look, Dhoni-led CSK to yet another title triumph, as they defeated SRH by eight wickets in the final. It was a memorable comeback for Chennai to the IPL, after having suffered a two-year ban.
5. IPL 2020 – The mature bearded look
By the time IPL 2020 arrived, Dhoni had retired from international cricket. Having last been seen on the cricket field during India’s heart-breaking World Cup 2019 semi-final defeat against New Zealand, fans were desperate to get a glimpse of Dhoni. And the CSK captain did not let down his fans. This time, he was seen with a beard to go along with his short hair. Not surprisingly, his latest look was a hit with fans and soon went viral on social media. Sadly, CSK could not do too well on the field and failed to qualify for the play-offs for the first time (except the two years when they were banned).