Virat Kohli and co. humbled England in the test series with a 4 to nothing drubbing. The team looks young, energetic and confident and are the favorites to win the ODI series as well once the English are back after their Christmas holidays. Virat Kohli and R Ashwin are probably in the best phase of their career and people here must be salivating at the prospect of new records being made by the Indian team in the upcoming ODI series. Virat Kohli has led a relatively inexperienced test team brilliantly and has already begun work on a new chapter on leadership for himself and the world. He should be absolutely raring to go hard against his opponents as soon as he is back on the field. But wait. Things might be slightly different coz now MS Dhoni will be at the helm of the team in the ODI series and Kohli will have to wait. Yes, MS is the most successful Indian captain. yes, he led the team that got the 2 WCs but does that mean you should hold back the most advanced weapon in your arsenal that can win you wars in the coming years. Well, MS Dhoni certainly doesn’t think so and that’s where his greatness lies.
Virat is the undisputed choice when it comes down to choose one player who can take Indian cricket forward and if that is the case why not start now and help him with everything he is not exposed to. Probably that’s the reason he did not announce retirement and just stepped down from the responsibilities of a captain. One day cricket demands quick thinking, effective implementation and good backup plans, an art MS Dhoni has mastered in the limited overs format and that is the reason he wants to be there like a guardian while Virat tones down his aggression into a more passive aggresive mode taking cue from his predecessor. MS Dhoni has always been a momentum man. He has always stressed on how a good fielding unit saves runs in every match and helps in piling on the pressure on the opponent. Its the same momentum that he wants to capitalise on at the moment with Indian cricket being in great shape and arguably the strongest side in all formats. It was revealed in his biopic how he said that we are all servants of the nation when it came down to taking tough decisions like leaving out some seniors for the greater good. This is exactly what he has done now. While fans may think he could have at least waited till the champions trophy, it is actually better if Virat captains the side in the 2nd most important ICC tournament before the World cup. We all know MS still has a good 2 years of cricket still left with him and probably could lead the side and win his 2nd Champions trophy also but no one would want Virat to go into the world cup as a captain without a major tournament win. While bilateral and tri series wins obviously help you prepare, a tournament where all big guns participate tests you as a unit in the best possible way. Add to that the fact that both champions trophy and WC will be hosted by England.
All this speculation points towards a possible Dhoni retirement before the world cup. We can not say for sure if Dhoni feels a 100% fit after all these years of keeping and we won’t be surprised if Dhoni announces his retirement from all formats before the world cup. He has earned a reputation now of taking a leave with minimum fuss 2 times now. He is a Lionel Messi fan and like Messi had said several times now that he will stop playing the game when he stops enjoying it, we can expect the same from MS as well. Having won everything there is to be won, maybe that phase has started and maybe his body isn’t coping that well now. One thing that we can be assured of is MS Dhoni will bow out very humbly the day he thinks he is not helping the team’s cause by being in the team. He loves to play for India and win trophies for the country and it doesn’t really matter to him if he is the captain of the winning team- another instance of his selfless nature that was shown in his biopic. Even at this point in his career when he probably could have announced his retirement instead of just giving up the captaincy and enjoy the rest of his life with lesser responsibilities, he realises that there’s still a need of a finisher and no one seems to be capable enough to do what he did consistently for ten years. He wants to be there till he can mentor someone like a Manish Pandey or a Pandya or a Jadhav to groove into that role permanently. With great powers, come great responsibilities they say and boy is he living that quote and how! He has been the dark knight, the silent guardian for years and continues to do so. He is truly an awesome combination of superheroes and deserves every bit of respect for this decision of his. We should be thankful that it’s only captaincy that he has stepped down from. One day, and may that day never come, he will announce his retirement from all formats of the game and that is the day we say one last time :”Dhoni finishes off in style“.
Kaptaan Dhoni ko PatnaBeats ka salaam!
Quote of the day:“If your actions create a legacy that inspires others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, then, you are an excellent leader.” ― Dolly Parton