In the early days of Indian Premier League (IPL) everyone was amazed at how popular Mahendra Singh Dhoni had become in Chennai. Though he wasn't one of the official marquee players at the start of the tournament, he soon became the biggest draw while representing Chennai Super Kings (CSK).
While other big stars like VVS Laxman didn't necessarily set the stage on fire, MSD looked at home right from the beginning. The people of Chennai also warmed up to him and soon, they saw him not as an outsider but as one of their own.
It was during one of the early seasons of IPL that the former India captain led his team, at home, against Sourav Ganguly's Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR). After winning the match, the CSK captain was interviewed by Harsha Bhogle in the post-match presentation ceremony.
The interviewer started the conversation by asking Dhoni about the enormous popularity he enjoys in Chennai despite being from Ranchi. The veteran wicketkeeper-batsman answered by expressing his agreement with the contention of Bhogle that he has become as good as a local lad in the city.
But when he cited an example of his popularity in the southern metropolitan town by narrating an anecdote, his words were a little odd.
"During the first edition, when I used to go out biking in the night, wherever I used to stop in red-light areas, they always used to come up to me and speak in Tamil. So, I think they really love me over here," a smiling Mahi said.
This must have pricked up the ears of everyone listening. Dhoni in 'Red-light areas'? Of course, they would have soon realised that what the legendary cricketer meant were traffic signals when the red-light is on. Still, it gave an opportunity for viewers to have a little chuckle. In the end, it was a harmless, little slip of tongue.
Watch the video here: