Former India skipper MS Dhoni turns 41 today. The Chennai Super Kings captain and legend MSD achieved incredible laurels over the course of his international career that lasted from 2004 to 2019. Even the name of his IPL franchise Chennai Super Kings is synonymous with Dhoni who is also known as ‘Thala’ by Chennai fans.
Often known as Captain Cool for his calm and composed demeanor even in the most pressured situations, Dhoni remains the only captain to have won all three ICC trophies. Other than his leadership abilities, Dhoni is known as one of the best wicketkeepers in the business especially when it came to lightning-quick stumpings and remarkable catching behind the stumps. In addition, he is one of the finest finishers that the world has ever seen.
As he celebrates his 41st birthday, here in this article, we have a look at 41 special matches from his cricketing career.
1. India vs Pakistan 2nd ODI in Visakhapatnam, 2005
MS Dhoni was promoted to the number 3 position in this ODI game by the then Indian skipper Sourav Ganguly. Dhoni in his first four international matches had smashed just 22 runs but he still got backed by management and the long-haired Jharkhand lad translated his potential in that game by smashing 148 runs from just 123 balls. His knock helped India to win that game by 58 runs and take a lead of 2-0 in the ODI Series.
2. India vs West Indies at Indian Oil Cup (6th ODI Match) in Colombo, 2005
MS Dhoni, coming into bat in the 46th Over (at number 6), played a finisher’s role by smashing quickfire 28 runs from just 13 balls. India defeated West Indies by a margin of just 7 runs which helped them to play the finals of the Tri-Series tournament against Sri Lanka two days later. This remains to be the first game where MS Dhoni started showing off his finishing skills with the bat.
3. India vs Zimbabwe at Videocon Triangular Series (6th ODI Match) in Harare, 2005
India, who had set out to chase 251 runs against Zimbabwe, at one stage were struggling at 91/5. MS Dhoni, coming in at number 7, had a brilliant 158-run partnership with Yuvraj Singh and won this game for India by 4 wickets. Dhoni stayed unbeaten till the end of the match and his contribution of 67* (63 balls) helped the Men in Blue chase this target with 11 balls to spare.
4. India vs Sri Lanka 3rd ODI in Jaipur, 2005
MS Dhoni recorded his highest score ever in his ODI career in this match. His 183* still remains to be the best score by any wicketkeeper in ODIs. MSD came out to bat at the number 3 position in this match when India were 7/1 (0.5 overs) and he went back only after finishing the match for the home team. As a result of Dhoni’s blistering knock, India chased down a big total of 299 runs very easily with 23 balls remaining.