A name that needs no introduction – Dhoni : The Captain Cool & True Legend
If anyone remembers god of cricket beside Tendulkar than it’s non-other than M.S.Dhoni. A name that needs no introduction- Dhoni is one of the player whose stardom can be seen in the eyes of his fans. Struggling from all the odds, rising from the depth of poverty, he became a religion for 130 million. He accomplished the dream of Indians lifting trophy at World Cup 2011. May be that’s why the god of cricket, Sachin Tendulkar himself quoted that- “Dhoni is one of the best captain I have played under.”
Mahendra Singh Dhoni born 7 July 1981, commonly known as MS Dhoni or Mahi or Thala, is an Indian international cricketer who captained the Indian national team in limited-overs formats from 2007 to 2016 and in Test cricket from 2008 to 2014. A right-handed middle-order batsman and wicket-keeper, he is the god of cricket. Started with a run out he made his ODI debut in 2004 against Bangladesh, and played his first Test a year later against Sri Lanka. Dhoni was born in Ranchi, Jharkhand to Pan Singh who worked at junior management positions in MECON. While in school, he was initially interested in football and was a goalkeeper for the school football team. Impressed by his play, the cricket coach asked him to join cricket. Though, he never had played cricket, Dhoni impressed with his wicket-keeping skills and became the regular wicketkeeper at the Commando cricket club. He was dedicated child and used to practice cricket till late. He was picked for the 1997-98 season Vinoo Mankad Trophy Under-16 Championship and he performed exceptionally well. Whenever he use to stand on the field, the whole school use to cheer for him. Deval Sahay, an ex-Bihar Cricket Association Vice-President, was the Ranchi District Cricket President during that time and played a key role in pushing Dhoni to the big stage of Ranchi team, junior Bihar cricket team and eventually senior Bihar Ranji Team for the 1999–2000 season. Within the period of 1 year, Dhoni moved from playing in CCL to the Bihar Ranji team. When he was 18 years old, he made his debut for Ranji Trophy and made a half century. It was this time when he was offered for the job of Travelling Ticket Examiner at Kharagpur railway station with the pay of Rs.1500. He is remembered an honest and fun person by many of his colleagues. But he also had mysterious and exhausted side of him. Frustrated by what he was doing, Mahi quit his job and moved back to Ranchi. He was picked by the international cricketer Deep Dasgupta in the Duleep Trophy finals to represent East zone and scored a half century in a losing cause. His talent was appreciated and later discovered by the BCCI’s initiative of finding small town talent TRDW via TRDO Prakash Poddar. Faced several rejections, Dhoni was finally recognized for his efforts in the 2003-04 season, in the One Day format and was picked for the India A squad for a tour of Zimbabwe and Kenya. However Dhoni did not have a great start to his ODI career and got run out for a duck on debut. In spite of an average series against Bangladesh, Dhoni was picked for the Pakistan ODI series. And here starts the Journey of Mahendra Singh Dhoni to become Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni. During the second match of the series, in his fifth one-day international match he scored 148 in Visakhapatnam off only 123 deliveries. Dhoni’s 148 broke the earlier record for the highest score by an Indian wicket-keeper and he created and re-created the history before the end of the year. Dhoni was promoted to speed up the scoring and ended the game with an unbeaten 183 off 145 balls. He played exceptionally well during this time be it against Pakistan where he hit 13 boundaries or with South Africa. He also received a lot of criticism when India lost the 2006 ICC Champions Trophy to West Indies and Australia. The situation turned out to be more severe when India lost 2007 cricket world cup to Bangladesh. Dhoni was constructing a house in his home-town Ranchi which was vandalized and damaged by political activists of JMM. But he outlived all the criticism when he scored 91* against Bangladesh and was declared man of the match. Dhoni was named vice-captain of the ODI team for the series against South Africa in Ireland and the subsequent India-England seven-match ODI series. He was also elected as the captain of the Indian squad for the World Twenty20 in September 2007. The ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 proved a turning point of his career where he alongside Yuvraj Singh and Gautam Gambhir, helped India lift their second world cup title since 1983. He scored 91 not out with historical six and became man of the match. When he won the 2013 ICC Champion trophy, he marked the record by becoming the only captain in international cricket to claim all the ICC trophies. In November 2013, Dhoni became the second India batsman after Sachin Tendulkar to aggregate 1,000 or more ODI-runs against Australia. India won the ODI series in 2014 against West Indies where Dhoni secured a half century. During the 2015 World cup, India played well and turned out to be “favourites”. Their win in quarter finals against Bangladesh, made him became the first non-Australian captain to win 100 ODI matches. Though the team eventually lost the finals to Australia. Dhoni was named the captain of Indian squad for the inaugural ICC World Twenty-20 held in South Africa in September 2007. He is the first Indian wicket keeper to reach 4000 tests runs. In 2017, Dhoni stepped down as a captain but continue to play for the team as wicket keeper. Even now captain Virat Kohli too seeks advice from then captain cool during tough times.
He was married to Sakshi Singh (now Sakshi Dhoni) in 2010. Dhoni has received several awards including the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award in 2007, the Padma Shri (India’s fourth highest civilian award) in 2009 and the Padma Bhushan (India’s third highest civilian award) in 2018. In 2016, a biopic was released on Ms Dhoni- M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story directed by Neeraj Pandey starring Sushant Singh Rajput in the lead role.
“You’ve seen him winning IPL tournaments, world cups, test matches, incredible victories, and he just picks up the stump and walks off like nothing happened” said by Pat Cummins (Australian cricketer).
This quote proved that his fandom is not limited to the nation only but is spread throughout the world. Started with a run out, he have contributed a lot to our Indian cricket team and led India to win T20 WC, ICC WC and ICC Champions Trophy.