HomeAnalysisIND vs SL: MS Dhoni's Habit Of Producing Substance...

IND vs SL: MS Dhoni’s Habit Of Producing Substance In ODIs Is A Grand Spectacle

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Former India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni has time and time again defined the One Day Internationals in cricket with his mastery at offer to make batting look so easy and composed.
Against Sri Lanka in the ongoing three-match ODI series, Dhoni mustered another text book innings in the first match at Dharamsala. His patience at the crease amidst a massacre on the Indian team by the Lankan bowlers was a piece of art. Only Dhoni knows the trick to step up every time and produce innings of such quality especially when the chips are down.
Dhoni scored 65 off 87 balls on backdrop of the lush Himalayan mountains to help his side save embarrassment after they were reeling at 29/7 on conditions that assisted the Lankan pacers. Dhoni not only helped his side get to at least past the 100-run mark (112), he showed why he is the backbone of the side going into the ICC 2019 World Cup. His authority has become a familiar tale off late as he graces willfully with age.
The veteran wicket-keeper batsman has proven to be indispensable for the side since more than a decade now and although he could not save the Indian side from going down, he ensured that the Indian cricket management need to build someone for the future once he bids adieu to the game. Dhoni has undoubtedly been one of the best wicket-keepers in the history of the game in the shorter format very few can achieve what he has.
Against the Lankans in the 1st ODI, Dhoni was the only Indian batsman to look at ease as he brought his experience into the fold and batted wisely. India might have lost the match by a whopping seven wickets, but the positive stand-in skipper Rohit Sharma can take is the innings Dhoni produced. Dhoni carved his innings with 10 fours and 2 sixes and played in a tempo that suited him best as he scored his 67th ODI fifty.
His 41-run stand with Kuldeep Yadav for the eighth wicket was a positive for India. Dhoni’s knack of batting with the tail is a well known fact and this is something only a few modern day greats have been able to do. The Indian team is used to MSD producing such substance and Rohit Sharma was quick to point it out in the press conference post the match.
Rohit stated he wasn’t surprised by Dhoni’s approach in the conditions at offer. “He knows what to do in these conditions. I was not surprised. Someone batting with him would have made a big difference. There was still something in the pitch when we were bowling, but 112 was not enough runs on the board.”
The 36-year-old stood tall in an one-man show for the hosts highlighting that he hasn’t lost the hunger to stop anywhere at the moment. Dhoni’s consistency in this format has the backing of skipper Virat Kohli, who has been vocal on the support of the ICC 2011 World Cup winning captain. With the 2019 World Cup not very far away, Kohli knows he has a big chance of getting his hands on the coveted trophy with Dhoni in the side.
In his absence, India have the likes of Rishabh Pant and Dinesh Karthik in two genuine wicket-keepers. With Karthik mainly being used as a cover for Dhoni and mainly as a batsman in the recent times, his age and consistency will be factor. Therefore the onus lies with the management building Rishabh Pant for the future and hope he steps in both as a keeper and a batsman.
Before Dhoni’s arrival in the big stage in 2005, India struggled with wicket-keepers post Nayan Mongia’s exit from the game. Several players came and went but none ever batted like a genuine batsman would; none had the qualities behind the stumps as Dhoni. A lot of success Indian team has enjoyed in ODIs is because of Dhoni’s brilliance with the bat. The experienced campaigner has played this sort of innings so many times in his career and his percentage of runs in a completed innings for the side is remarkable.
The Indian team knows the value their star player brings in abundance and should celebrate every moment Dhoni graces on the field till the time he calls shot in a glittering career.

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