Tag Archives: MS Dhoni

ICC World Cup 2015: Key Players from India

The team, currently ranked second in the ODIs, will be led by none other than the experienced MS Dhoni – who had guided the team to World Cup glory in the last edition. Ravindra Jadeja and Stuart Binny have been included as all-rounders, whilst Axar Patel and Ravinchandran Ashwin offer spin options.

Here’s a look at the key players from India in the World Cup:

MS Dhoni

Playing role: Wicket-keeper batsman

After his Test retirement in December, MS Dhoni has shifted his focus towards the shorter formats. The World Cup would be one of the major assignment for Dhoni as captain. He will be leading for the second time in India’s campaign to defend the World Cup title. When it comes to one-dayers, Dhoni is an astute captain and will also play an important role as a batsman lower down the order.

He has an impressive record of 8245 runs from 252 matches at an average of 52.51, which includes nine centuries and 56 half-centuries.

Virat Kohli

Playing role: Middle-order batsman

All eyes would be on Virat Kohli in the World Cup considering the form he was in during the Test series against Australia. Kohli as a batsman and cricketer has matured and definitely a key player in India’s middle-order. In the 2011 World Cup final against Sri Lanka, his 35 played a crucial role in India’s victory and this time the expectations are much higher.

In ODIs from 148 matches, Kohli has got more than 6,000 runs with 21 centuries at an average of 51.84.

Ajinkya Rahane

Playing role: Top-order batsman

Ajinkya Rahane’s progress at the international level has been phenomenal and the Mumbai batsman made a grudual process from Tests to ODIs. The right-handed batsman will have a major role in India’s campaign at the World Cup and could be a floater in the line-up. The reason because Rahane too has adjusted well as an opener and if needed can bat at the middle order.

Rahane like Kohli would also be high on confidence after a successful Test series against Australia and needs to carry the same momentum into the mega event. His temperament, technique and approach towards his batting are his strenghts.

Ravindra Jadeja

Playing role: All-rounder

Ravindra Jadeja is one such cricketer who won’t impress you immediately, but his limited skills be it with the ball and bat is an asset for India. His left-arm spin doesn’t get much spin but he maintains a tight line and length. Moreover, Jadeja as a batsman lower down the order can bring the long handle to effective use – added to that he is a livewire on the field.

In limited-over cricket, Jadeja is Dhoni’s go-to man, especially as a bowler who can get through the overs quickly and keeping things tight. Jadeja also faces the challenge of recovering from a shoulder injury before the start of India’s matches.

Suresh Raina

Playing role: Middle-order batsman

Suresh Raina may have not have found his footing at the Test level, but for India in the shorter formats he is indispensable. His struggle against the short balls in Tests is well known, however, in one-dayers he judges the length quite early and manages to find gaps easily.

His slow offspinners is a plus for Dhoni when he wants to slip through few quick overs. Raina’s form would be crucial in India’s journey to defend the World Cup.

Squad: MS Dhoni(c/wk), Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Stuart Binny, Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja, Ambati Rayudu, Axar Patel, R Ashwin, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Md. Shami, Umesh Yadav, Mohit Sharma, Ishant Sharma, Dhawal Kulkarni

Dhoni retires from Test cricket due to ‘strain of playing all formats’

Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni has retired from Test cricket “citing the strain of playing all formats”, and Virat Kohli will lead the team in the fourth Test against Australia in Sydney, the cricket board said Tuesday.

The shock announcement came minutes after Dhoni faced reporters in the wake of India’s draw in the third Test against Australia in Melbourne, which conceded the four-match series 2-0 to the hosts.

Dhoni, 33, said nothing of his retirement plans during the post-match media conference at the Melbourne Cricket Ground and the news was broken on the Board of Control for Cricket in India BCCI’s Twitter feed.

“MS Dhoni has chosen to retire from Test Cricket with immediate effect,” it said.

“Virat (Kohli) will be the captain for the 4th and Final Test against Australia.”

Long considered Dhoni’s heir apparent, Kohli led the team in the first Test against Australia in Adelaide, scoring back-to-back centuries in his debut as captain and earning plaudits for his aggressive approach despite the cliff-hanging loss by 48 runs.

The BCCI later issued a statement saying the wicketkeeper-captain would now concentrate on one-day internationals and Twenty20 cricket, a surprise move given most senior cricketers generally forgo the shorter formats of the game in a bid to preserve their Test careers.

“One of India’s greatest Test Captains under whose leadership India became the No. 1 team in the Test Rankings MS Dhoni, has decided to retire from Test Cricket citing the strain of playing all formats of Cricket,” the statement said.

“BCCI while respecting the decision of M S Dhoni to retire from Test Cricket, wishes to thank him for his enormous contribution to Test Cricket and the laurels that he has brought to India.”

Dhoni’s overseas record of late, however, has been disappointing. The team was whitewashed 0-4 in England (2011) and Australia (2011-12) under his leadership. Besides the team also suffered defeats in South Africa and New Zealand and had been beaten by England yet again this summer.

Yet the wicketkeeper-batsman remains one of the most successful captains ever for India, having led the side to the top of ICC rankings in Tests and ODIs.

Dhoni played 90 tests for India since making his debut against Sri Lanka in Chennai in 2005, a year after playing his first one-dayer.

He has since scored 4,876 runs at an average of 38.09 with six centuries and 33 half centuries.

Dhoni has also taken 256 catches and 38 stumpings, as well as becoming the first Indian wicketkeeper to take nine dismissals in a match – achieved in the just completed third test.

Dhoni took over from Rahul Dravid as India captain in 2007 and led the side in 60 tests – 27 wins, 18 losses and 15 draws.

But, he was in the eye of storm recently when it was insinuated that his name was there in the Mudgal Commission report on the IPL 6 spot-fixing scandal.

His stewardship is likely to be hotly debated for months and years to come, having taken India’s Test team to the top ranking for a brief period, but also leading a team that would invariably fail to perform away from home soil.

“He just has not really got the team going at Test match level. That’s up to the selectors but he has had a lot of time as captain, close to 60 Test matches. I think he has had a lot of time,” former captain Ganguly had recently said of Dhoni, “I think Dhoni is a good captain. The record he has in one-day cricket, he is a good captain. But in Test conditions overseas, it has just fallen away a bit.”Though not a victory, Dhoni’s last Test in charge may have been satisfying on a personal level, having struck an unbeaten 24 to help guide his team to safety on the fifth and final day as Australia’s seamers pushed hard for a third successive win.

Dale Steyn, Mitchell Johnson, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar nominated for ICC’s People’s Choice Award for 2014

A media release on the official website of the International Cricket Council has announced the nominees for the ICC People’s Choice Award for 2014, as also provided a host of other information related to this year’s awards. Here’s the full media release:

This year’s fifth LG People’s Choice Award sees five players from five different countries nominated to win the only award voted for by the public at the annual LG ICC Awards.

The quintet of players nominated for the award are England women’s captain Charlotte Edwards, Australia fast bowler Mitchell Johnson, India fast bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews and South Africa fast bowler Dale Steyn.

Voting for the LG People’s Choice Award is now open and will close at midnight (UAE time) on Thursday, 30 October. The winner, as well as the ICC Test and ODI Teams of the Year and the short-list for the remaining LG ICC Awards 2014 will be announced on Wednesday 5 November 2014 at a press conference at the ICC Headquarters in Dubai. ICC Chief Executive David Richardson and ICC Cricket Committee Chairman Anil Kumble will attend the press conference, which will start at 1030.

The short-list was nominated by an elite panel of cricket experts, which is headed by ICC Cricket Committee Chairman and former India captain Anil Kumble. Other members of the panel are Jonathan Agnew, a former England international and now a respected broadcaster/journalist, ex-Sri Lanka opener Russel Arnold, former New Zealand captain Stephen Fleming, and Betty Timmer, former Chair of the ICC Women’s Committee.

The five players were selected by the panel using the criteria set out by LG and the ICC, which required that the nominees have displayed attributes regarded by LG as being in line with its corporate qualities, such as innovation, dynamism, strength in decision-making, performing well under pressure and executing a plan to distinction.

ICC Chief Executive David Richardson said: “The support of the fans is vital for the game and particularly valued by the players – hence, the significance of the LG People’s Choice award. The overwhelming number of cricket fans who participate to select the winner of this award has made it one of the most prestigious awards in the ICC calendar.

“None of the deserving nominees have won this award before and this year’s fan favourite will join the exclusive company of previous winners, Sachin Tendulkar(2010), Kumar Sangakkara (2011 and 2012) and Mahendra Singh Dhoni (2013).”


I wanted to be part of football revolution, says MS Dhoni


CHENNAI: If seven years with Chennai Super Kings made MS Dhoni something of a Chennaiite, the Indian captain on Monday signalled that he will continue his affair with the city by purchasing a stake in Indian Super League franchise Chennaiyin FC.

The CSK skipper is now a partner in the Chennai franchise with Vita Dani and Abhishek Bachhan.

“As all of you know, I began my sporting activities as a footballer and was a goalkeeper for my school and then shifted to cricket since we didn’t have a wicketkeeper in our team,” Dhoni told reporters on Monday.

“And as a far my association with Chennaiyin FC is concerned, I have always been a big fan of football and Manchester United and I follow English Premier League. It gives immense happiness to be a part of this team and I’m sure, with the kind of players we have in our ranks, we’ll make Chennaiyin FC a great side.”

The Indian skipper is second current player after India vice-captain Virat Kohli (FC Goa) to co-own an ISL team.

Former India greats Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly are co-owners in Kerala Blasters FC and Atletico de Kolkata, respectively.

Dhoni feels the way ISL is being organised and the investor interest it has gained could help the football league become as big a hit as the Indian Premier League.

“Why not? When IPL started seven years ago nobody thought it would become such a big event.. It happened only because people supported it. Many important people have been involved in the [football] league, the media is very excited about it and it’s time for the common people to come forward and extend their support. I appeal to all football lovers to come to the stadium and watch the matches because for a player nothing is more satisfying than playing in front of a full house,” Dhoni said.

Noting how important it is to develop football at the grassroots level, he said Chennaiyin FC will focus on more the development of the sport rather than on winning trophies and championships. “It’s important to develop the available talent.

We are still trying to improve our football standards and I think a team can’t make it big unless it has proper development at the grassroots level.

We are fortunate to have some intentionally established players in the team and I’m sure our local players will benefit a lot by playing alongside them,” Dhoni said.

On his choice of the Chennai club, Dhoni said, “As I said my association with CSK for seven years has helped me mingle with the local people and learn their culture. It would have been extremely difficult for me to captain CSK and own a Kolkata, Delhi or Mumbai [football] team at the same time. Given my connect with the city, Chennai was a natural choice. I’m thankful to Chennai for giving me so much love. This city has passion for sports and, from the support CSK has had all these years, I’m sure it will be the same for Chennaiyin FC.”