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What Made MS Dhoni One of The All Time Greats?

India's MS Dhoni in action
India's MS Dhoni in action

MS Dhoni recently announced his retirement from international cricket, bringing an end to what has been a fantastic career for the Indian.

The news made front and back page headlines in India, with some of the biggest names, past and present, from the world of sport and Bollywood coming out to congratulate Dhoni on the career he had.

Captain Cool

There is a strong argument to be made for saying Dhoni is the best one-day international captain the game has ever seen.

Unlike many of his counterparts across world cricket, Dhoni always seemed to look cool on the field, despite being under intense pressure at times. This is something which has clearly helped his teammates in difficult moments.

Dhoni has played in some great Indian teams over the last couple of decades. He has been able to keep them motivated and has got the best out of them. With so many talented players in the same team, ensuring everyone buys into it isn’t always easy.

Under his captaincy, India won the 2007 Twenty20 World Cup, 2010 and 2016 Asia Cups, 2011 Cricket World Cup and 2013 ICC Champions Trophy. Some skippers can only dream of winning one of those trophies.

Great Finisher

Dhoni’s biggest strength as a batsman was the way he was able to finish off an innings for his team. He so often entered the crease when his team were struggling but somehow was able to dig them out of trouble.

The right-handed batsman had a great skill of timing his innings to perfection. He did not try to hit every ball out of the ground when he arrived at the crease, even when his side were behind the required run-rate. Once he was settled, the boundaries came in high numbers.

Although cricket fans will not see that trademark innings in international cricket again, he is still going to play in the IPL in 2020. His side Chennai Super Kings are 5/1 in to lift the trophy this year. They are often one of the favourites in the live betting at William Hill on their matches in the IPL as they have won this competition three times since it was inaugurated.

Unorthodox with Gloves

It is fair to say when Dhoni first wore the gloves for India, he did not look a natural. His stance at times was very unorthodox. Despite this, he has gone on to be very consistent for his country behind the wickets.

Dhoni finishes his international career with a number of records as a wicket-keeper. In international T20 cricket, he has the most catches, dismissals and stumpings by a wicketkeeper. In the ODI format of the game, he is the only wicket-keeper to pass 100 stumpings, while in Test cricket, he has the most dismissals by any Indian wicket-keeper in history.

The world of cricket is going to miss seeing Dhoni feature for India. He was not only a hugely popular figure in his country, but supporters of other nations really enjoyed his style of play. There is no doubt he is one of the all-time greats of the sport.

©Cricket World 2020