MS Dhoni’s farewell video was just like his cricket — less about him, more about team

A file photo of former Indian cricket captain M.S. Dhoni. | Photo: ANI

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M.S. Dhoni is known for taking the game down to the wire. Even when the match situation feels utterly hopeless, he believes in just hanging in there.

Over his long career, which came to an end Saturday, Dhoni succeeded in delivering that knockout punch at the finish line more often than not. But there were always situations when the odds were stacked so heavily that even the greatest finisher couldn’t find a way to get across the finish line. The sequence of events that led to Dhoni’s retirement from international cricket had a similar ring to it.

Dhoni’s last international game was the 2019 World Cup semi-final against New Zealand. A game that India lost after a brilliant fightback courtesy Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja. After that loss, Dhoni took a break from international cricket.

One got the feeling that he wanted to stay fresh for one last lung-bursting hustle for Team India’s pursuit of WT20 title in 2020. But this time, the odds were so huge that the whole world was reeling under it. The 2020 edition of WT20 was cancelled as Australia gave up on hopes of staging a world tournament amid the pandemic.

Ever the pragmatist, Dhoni took it on the chin and announced his retirement from international cricket in the run-up to the Indian Premier League (IPL), avoiding any needless distraction and speculation over his international career.

Also read: ‘There will never be anyone like him’ — the tributes pour in as Dhoni retires

What the video says about him

Trust a champion keeper to stump you when you are least expecting. As the whole cricketing world was gearing up for the IPL, Dhoni’s announcement of retirement on Instagram came as a surprise even as the choice of words was quintessentially Dhoni: quirky, spontaneous, casual, and unpolished.

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