New Delhi: BCCI Chief and Chennai Super Kings's owner N Srinivasan had more faith in astrology than the players he bought that he not only consulted his astrologer but also passed on the advice captain M.S. Dhoni during IPL 2013.
According to Economics Times Srinivasan took his astrologer Dr Venkatesan Karthikeyan's advice on on toss and batting order. These matches include the final in Kolkata on May 26, in which CSK lost to Mumbai Indians by 23 runs.
His astrologer also advised to the team management on which deities should be propitiated on match days.
According to this newspaper the International Cricket Council's anti-corruption and security unit and Mumbai Police, which is investigating match fixing charges in IPL, are aware of this.
Srinivasan's son in law Gurunath Meiyappan is being investigated for IPL match fixing in which some players including pacer Srisanth is also facing charges.
Arun Pandey, who has known Dhoni for almost 15 years and shares business interests with the India captain, said “Dhoni is a very humble and honest man and he will do anything to help you but when it comes to the game he is quite clear: he is the captain, he makes the decisions.”
The astrologer advised that the batting order should not be changed as far as possible. In the event, Chennai lost the toss and Mumbai chose to bat first while the batting order remained the same from the previous match, also against Mumbai, although only three batsmen were needed in that game.
The astrologer adviseded Srinivasan to ask Meiyappan to stay away from the match against King's XI Punjab in Mohali on April 10. This asked that Srinivasan's son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan “stay away from viewing the match in any format”. Chennai won by ten wickets.
Another advise sent on April 11, refers to the match against Royal Challengers Bangalore at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chepauk on April 13. Gurunath is again advised to “stay away”. Chennai won by four wickets with one ball remaining.
The astrologer further advised offerings be made to various deities, distinguished persons, or special guests. Before the final against Kolkata Knight Riders, Dr Karthikeyan said: “As 26th is a Sunday and Jyeshta Nakshatra and not friendly to Shri Dhoni, we have to do special prayers to some important deities of various temples.”
The astrologer then went on to advise that members of the team management carry with them laminated pictures of Ganesha and Goddess Baglamugi and that they be placed on specific walls of the dressing room.
CSK team management and owners were also advised to wear blue Tshirts throughout the match. It was also written that the opposition must be given red towels.
The list of such advices stood at 18 for the match against King's XI and 20 for the contest versus Bangalore.