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Mahendra Singh Dhoni- The Legendary Indian Captain


M S Dhoni is the most successful captain in Indian team. The Captain Cool has led India to win two world cup titles under his leadership, which no other captain has done ever.

However questions were being raised about his captaincy ability in future. Putting an end to all of this, he decided to quit as captain on Wednesday, January 4.

Road to Captaincy

MSD made his debut in ODI in Bangladesh tour in 2004/05. After playing in team for nearly three years, he was made to lead the Indian Cricket Team for the first ever T20 World Cup in 2007. MSD was leading a very young team, with all seniors resting. No one expected India to perform well in the tournament.

However Dhoni’s captaincy did the trick and India clinched the World Cup. No one can forget the last over in the final of World Cup. An inexperienced Joginder Sharma was given the ball, instead of Harbhajan Singh.

Joginder Sharma took the crucial wicket of Pakistan Captain Misbah-Ul-Haq, and India won the trophy. Dhoni’s captaincy was praised by everyone.

Dhoni went on to become the ODI captain of the Indian team for the seven-match ODI series against Australia in September 2007.

He made his debut as full-time Test captain of India during the fourth and final Test against Australia at Nagpur in November 2008 replacing Anil Kumble who was injured in the third test and who then announced his retirement.

Golden Period as Captain

Dhoni is known for captain cool nature. He does not show his emotions much on field. He is known for handling pressures. Under his captaincy, India climbed to No. 1 in the ICC Test Rankings in December 2009.

After that he managed to lead India in a series-levelling world championship of Tests against the South Africans in February 2010. India also managed to draw the Test series 1–1 in South Africa later that year.

The 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup was played in India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. Dhoni had great responsibility on his shoulders as India were knocked out in first round in 2007 World Cup. However Dhoni smartly captained the team and India went on to clinch their second 50 over World Cup.

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In the final against Sri Lanka, chasing 275, Dhoni promoted himself up the batting order, and scored 91 not out off 79 balls. He finished the match of in style with a huge six over long-on off bowler Nuwan Kulasekara and won Man of the Match.


MSD is the most successful captain of Indian cricket team. However there has been lots of criticism regarding his captaincy. He was known to encourage youngsters and had some favourites like Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja.

He is said to have supported his favourites and even got seniors like Sehwag and Gambhir out of team. We all know the cold vibes which Sehwag shares with Dhoni. He is also known to experiment a lot with bowling, especially in death overs, which leads to more run scored by opponents.

However his biggest criticism came in 2014–15 season in India’s tour of Australia. After trailing 2-0 in the series, he all of a sudden announced his retirement from test matches after the end of third test.

His announcement shocked the cricket fans around the world. Senior cricketers criticized Dhoni for retiring from an important tournament in mid-way. Virat Kohli was made the captain and he captained India in fourth and final test.

Recent Losses

After retiring from Tests, MSD continued to lead India in 50 overs and 20 overs format. However he was not able to create the same magic as he used to do before with his captaincy. Most of his decisions, especially regarding bowling in power play and death overs did not do much good for the team.

One of the favourites to win the World T20 crown at home, India lost badly to New Zealand in their first match in T20 World Cup 2016. However the team bounced back due to Virat Kohli’s single handedly taking India to victory against Bangladesh, Paksitan and Australia.

However the winning run ended there as India came severely short against the rampaging West Indian batsman and eventually crashed to a heavy defeat in the semifinals.

In the last IPL, he captained Rising Supergiants Pune franchise (RPS). Dhoni’s captaincy has once again come under the scanner, especially his surprising lack of faith in his one-time go-to bowler, Ravichandran Ashwin. He has also not played all rounder Irfan Pathan in all the matches except one, which has led to nation wide criticism.


Dhoni is always known as a team man. We have seen him many times giving chances to youngsters. He comes down the order and plays the role of finisher, which is a very difficult role.

Yup his captaincy tactics have backfired, but it was the same MSD, whom we supported when he went on to win two world cups for India. MSD has been one of the best captains of India, if not the best. He is great batsman.

With Dhoni giving up his captaincy, he will be able to concentrate more on his batting. We would love to see Dhoni up the batting order. Hope Virat Kohli uses Dhoni in a proper way in ODI’s and T-20’s.