Legacy of Dhoni: Yet another unpredicted one
The journey of boldness and unpredictability that began with the final over of 2007 T20 world cup final has now came to the stepping down from captaincy. This doesn't really sum up the decade long MS Dhoni's journey in international cricket. We always tend to relate Dhoni with surprising and unpredicted moves and somewhat underestimate the achievements he has achieved with those moves.
Be it the final over of T20 world cup being bowled by Joginder Sharma when senior and experienced Harbhajan had his overs left, be it promoting himself ahead of in-form Yuvraj Singh in 2011 world cup final or be it snatching an improbable win against Bangladesh with Hardik Panyda bowling the last over. These are just a few of those memorable moves of Dhoni that a cricket fan can never forget. If we look back at his decade long journey, we will find more instances when he outsmarted his opposition and came out victorious. Those last over finishes with sixes from the bat of Dhoni were nightmares for even the best bowlers and maybe we will be witnessing more such instances when we see Dhoni finishing matches with his bat.
If anyone has to get the top credit of taking India to a world cup victory in 2011, it has to be Dhoni. Not only for his match winning knock in final at Wankhede, not only for that memorable six of Nuwan Kulasekara in the final that gave India a world cup trophy but also for nurturing young talents around him. Guys like Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, Rohit Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin and many others openly credit him for their success in international cricket. Dhoni pre-planned the transition of Indian cricket team before the retirement of senior men like Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman and nurtured young talents as their replacements. These young players are the ones who are now taking Indian team to new heights.
In his 199 matches as an ODI captain, he exhibited brilliant thinking abilities, great presence of mind and excellent match awareness. If you put aside his captaincy and leading the team, he was equally destructive and responsible in his batting. He started as a destructive finisher in his early days but gradually transformed himself into a responsible batsman. There are very rare batsmen who can match with his running between the wicket. And don't forget, he is the best non-striker you can ever get. Dhoni was the partner when Sachin scored 200 for the first time in ODIs and Dhoni was the partner when Rohit Sharma repeated the same feat against Australia. And who can forget his swiftness with globes in hand.
Its not over yet. Dhoni has stepped down from captaincy but will be playing for his country in limited overs cricket. Perhaps, Dhoni has a lot to offer and continue his legacy not with his captaincy now but with bat in hand and gloves in hand.
Iconic Quotes on MS Dhoni
"If 15 runs are needed off the last 6 balls, pressure is on the bowler and not on MS Dhoni." -Ian Bishop
"You just can't bowl spin to MS Dhoni in the death overs. He is simply the BEST IN THE WORLD." -Alastair Cook
"Strike Rate of 90+, Average of 50+... Stats show that MS Dhoni is the best finisher of this world." -Michael Clarke
"Dhoni has the respect of all other playing nations. I've found him to be a really strong leader" -Glenn McGrath
“The best compliment for me is when someone says they’ll pay to watch me play, And I can say that I’ll pay to watch MS Dhoni bat. MS is not the next Gilchrist. He’s the first MS Dhoni" -Adam Gilchrist
“I would go to war with Dhoni by my side” –Gary Kirsten
"When I die, the last thing I want to see is the six that Dhoni hit in the 2011 World Cup final." –Sunil Gavaskar
"MS Dhoni has done a pretty good job for the team, Leading a team to such a triumph just after taking over as captain is a great achievement." –Ricky Ponting