In the last two months, on a couple of occasions, former Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni has found himself in one of the most tricky scenarios for any batsmen. When the middle order collapses faster than melting ice, Dhoni's ability to stay on the crease has forced him to try and build partnerships with tailenders, especially when the Indian cricket team is not doing so well coming up with a respectable total to pose a real threat to the opposition.
Under such 'Do or Die' circumstances, Dhoni is known to often stick with the third option: stay on the line and try to build a good total, even if it means that his knock is relatively slower than how it should have been; the alternative being getting out while going for a hasty shot.
During the first Twenty20 match against the visiting Australian cricket team, Dhoni was put under a similar situation yet again. With Rishabh Pant, Dinesh Karthik and Krunal Pandya sent back to the dressing room for cheap, Dhoni had one and only one objective in his head: Help India play till the end.
Agreed, his pace was too slow, especially for a T20I match, even then India played all 20 overs and were able to put a number which was a lot more than it could have been if Mahi had gotten out in foolishness.
If we had won the game, the narrative towards Dhoni's batting would certainly have been a lot different but because all wasn't rosy at the end, he was scrutinised by the self-proclaimed cricket pundits online:February 24, 2019 February 24, 2019 February 24, 2019
However, Aussie all-rounder Glenn Maxwell came to the veteran's rescue when he said it was “fair enough” for Dhoni to turn down singles with his innings coming to an end, especially due to the slow and low nature of the pitch.
According to cricket.com.au, Maxwell said: "MS is obviously a world-class finisher and even he was finding it hard to hit the middle of the bat… I think it was right of him to try and farm the strike and he hit a six in the last over… If you're holding MS to one boundary in the last few overs it's a pretty good effort and also a sign of the conditions as well.”
There is not doubting Dhoni's abilities to finish games for the Men in Blue. More often than not, we have seen the man perform to the best of his abilities in clutch situations while also winning games with massive sixes on the last ball.
It was just one of those days when things didn't turn out to be the way one hoped for. Even then, the fact that the Indian side was able to hold off the Australians to a nail-biting last-ball game winner was made possible with a great deal of credit going to MS Dhoni.