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MS Dhoni was one of the finest white-ball finishers the game ever produced.

Five instances when MS Dhoni proved he was one of the best finishers ever

MS Dhoni announced his retirement on Saturday, marking an end to one of the most stellar careers in the history of the game. One of the most successful Indian captains, MS Dhoni is the only skipper to have won all the three ICC white-ball tournaments - the ICC ODI World Cup, the ICC T20 World Cup and the ICC Champions Trophy.

As great a captain he was, MS Dhoni was also one of the finest finishers the game had ever witnessed. His heroic innings with the bat have bailed his team out of trouble on a number of occasions. Here is a look at five such instances when MS Dhoni proved why he was one of the best finishers ever in white-ball cricket.


Five instances when MS Dhoni proved he was one of the best finishers ever

5. 72* (46) vs Pakistan, Lahore 2006

MS Dhoni's 72 runs off 46 balls vs Pakistan was enough to win India the game

Pakistan batted first and, thanks to a brilliant century from Shoaib Malik, posted a daunting total of 288 in their fifty overs.

In reply, India got off to the worst possible start as they lost two quick wickets. Sachin Tendulkar tried to keep one end ticking with a well-made 95, but India at one stage were at 190 for 5 and still needed 99 runs to win from last 15 overs.


In this tricky situation, a young and charismatic MS Dhoni came out to bat and from the go started to play his natural shots.

Dhoni did not let any bowlers settle and smashed 13 boundaries in an innings of 72 runs from just 46 balls. He assisted Yuvraj SIngh brilliantly who himself played a good knock of 79*. India won the game comfortably by 5 wickets and MS Dhoni announced himself as a finisher to watch out for in future.

4. 113* (125) vs Pakistan, Chennai 2012

MS Dhoni's brilliant 113* helped India post a fighting total of 227 on board after a horrible start.

Pakistan toured India for a three-match ODI series and a two-match T20I series and the first ODI was played at Chennai. India batted first and got off to a horrible start as the Pakistan pacers, Mohammad Irfan and Junaid Khan ran through the Indian top order and middle order, putting India in a deep hole at 29/5.


In such a grave situation, MS Dhoni walked out to bat and weathered the early storm. Dhoni took his time to settle in and once he got his eye in, the Indian skipper began to take calculated risks.

As wickets kept on falling at the other end, MS Dhoni accelerated and kept on playing his shots, bringing about one of his most important ODI hundreds.

India ended up posting a fighting total of 227 and although Pakistan won the game comfortably by 6 wickets, it was MS Dhoni's ability to finish an innings that gave the Indian bowlers something to bowl at.

3. 44* (58) vs Australia, Adelaide 2012

MS Dhoni's clever 44* helped India chase down 270 runs at Adelaide in 2012

Australia batted first and, thanks to fifties from Peter Forrest on debut and David Hussey, were able to post a challenging total of 269 in their 50 overs. India got off to a good start as Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir added 52 runs for the opening stand. Gautam Gambhir went on to score a steady 92 but there was no other big contribution from the batsmen at the other end.

MS Dhoni walked out to bat when Gambhir departed with India needing 92 runs from the last 15 overs. Dhoni first tried to understand the pace of the wicket and got his eye in. He added 62 runs with Suresh Raina and a further 18 runs with Ravindra Jadeja.

It all came own to the last over in which India needed 12 runs off 4 balls and Clint McKay was bowling.

MS Dhoni smashed McKay over long on for a humongous six which brought the equation down to 6 runs from three. A waist-high no ball helped further and India won the game with two balls to spare. While many may question Dhoni's strategy to take the game till the end, he showed that he had timed the chase to perfection.

2. 45* (52) vs Sri Lanka, Port of Spain 2013

MS Dhoni's heroic innings versus Sri Lanka helped India chase down 202 with one wicket in hand.

India met Sri Lanka in the final of the tri-series involving the two nations and the West Indies in Port of Spain. Ishant Sharma's brilliant figures of 5/30 helped India bundle out Sri Lanka for just 201 inside their 50 overs.

Chasing just 202 runs to win, India got off to a jittery start as they lost 2 quick wickets for just 27 runs. However, Rohit Sharma kept on going and scored a half century, adding 50 runs with Dinesh Karthik for the third wicket and then another 62 runs were added for the fourth wicket.

MS Dhoni came to the crease with the score 139/4 and India in a relatively comfortable position to win the game. However, by the time Dhoni got his eye in, wickets started falling like nine pins and, in a flash, India were 9 down with still 20 runs to get.

It again came down to the last over where India needed 15 runs and Dhoni was on strike. Shaminda Eranga had the ball in his hand and after the first ball was a dot ball, it seemed like the pressure might get to the Indian skipper.

However, Dhoni deposited the next three balls for 6, 4 and 6 as India won the game by one wicket and won the tri-series

1. 91* (79) vs Sri Lanka, Mumbai 2011

MS Dhoni scored an unbeaten 91 as India lifted their second ODI World Cup after 28 years

One of the finest ODI innings from MS Dhoni came in the final of the 2011 Cricket World Cup between India and Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka posted a daunting total of 274 in their 50 overs thanks to a brilliant hundred from Mahela Jayawardene and a strong finish from Thisara Perera.

Needing 275 runs to win the World Cup, India got off to a horrible start, losing Virender Sehwag for a duck on the second ball of the innings. Sachin Tendulkar too soon departed and India looked to be in deep trouble. Virat Kohli and Gautam Gambhir then consolidated the Indian innings by adding 88 runs for the third wicket.

But as soon as Virat Kohli's wicket fell, there was again dead silence in the Wankhede Stadium.

While everyone was waiting to see Yuvraj Singh walk out to bat, it was MS Dhoni who had promoted himself up the order seeing that there were two off -spinners operating.

MS Dhoni came out to bat with a positive mindset and hit the gaps, running hard between the wickets and finding that odd boundary every other over. His crucial partnership with Gautam Gambhir brought India closer and closer to a World Cup win.

After Gambhir's departure for 97, MS Dhoni and Yuvraj SIngh applied the finishing touches to India's chase. Dhoni scored 91 off just 79 balls and hit that iconic six over long-on to help India win the ODI World Cup after 28 years.

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Edited by
S Chowdhury
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