4 times when MS Dhoni made wrong decisions in his international career
1) Show of Unity in the press conference
There is no denying the fact that MS Dhoni is one of the most composed characters the game has ever seen. Even in the toughest of the situations, he keeps his emotions in check and it is one of his qualities which has helped him lead team India on more than 300 occasions. Moreover, he has been the pillar of strength for the country’s cricket since he took over captaincy way back in 2007 for the inaugural T20 WC.
Though he started the journey on a positive note by winning the championship the heat of the captain’s chair didn’t spare him. It was evident from his unusual press conference activity in the 2009 T20 WC. After reaching England for their title defence, the Indian cricket team headlined the newspapers but this time for their off-field antics. There were reports going around of an alleged rift between the captain, Dhoni and Virender Sehwag.
On top of that Dhoni made a witty statement that further intensified the tense situation. Hearing all the voices around him, Dhoni decided to clear the air. On the eve of their opening tie against Bangladesh, the skipper decided to bring the entire team to the press conference to showcase the unity in the team. It became a national debate and also confused the fans. Finally, it has to be said that he misread the situation and took a hasty decision to prove his critics wrong.
2) Not playing Gambhir, Sachin and Sehwag together
Many people might get surprised by hearing that 2011 was one of the toughest years for the skipper, MS Dhoni. The reason being the team’s dismal performances after their monumental World Cup win at Wankhede. The Blue team experienced a torrid time on their overseas trips to England and Australia. Especially the 2011-12 CB series where the team even failed to qualify for the finals.
Right from the start of the series, the team looked clueless on the field and it led to various questions regarding the team’s champions tag. At the centre of it was the captain who faced the wrath of the cricketing fraternity for his poor decision-making skills. Particularly his use of the senior players raised quite a few eyebrows. Dhoni’s idea of not fielding the trio of Gautam Gambhir, Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag in the same playing XI backfired completely.
He termed them liabilities in the field which is surprising considering their contributions in the World Cup win which took place just months before the event. Also, he went onto add that he wanted to mould the side for the 2015 World Cup. Then out of the blue, he played them together in a do or die clash, which shows that he doubted his own instincts. Besides even the players involved in the plans showed their displeasure which was not a good sign for the dressing-room environment.
3) MS Dhoni keeping mum on IPL 2013 spot-fixing scandal
There is a reason why MS Dhoni is a highly rated captain in the cricketing community and it is because of his ability to hold the fort in the most difficult times. Be it with his batting or choice of words in the interview sessions he has always found the right balance. In simple terms, apart from the finishing skills, he is also known for his quirky replies to the journalists.
However, the situation was quite different in the press-conference which happened before the Indian team’s departure for the 2013 Champions Trophy. It was the same time when the storm of IPL spot-fixing took the centre stage. So the media used to circle the Indian cricketers for their responses. Finally, they got the Indian captain at gunpoint and showered him with a bucket load of questions regarding the events.
Stunningly Dhoni remained tight-lipped throughout the session. Whenever a controversial question was hurled at him, media manager, RN Baba took over from him. Considering Dhoni’s stature in the Indian cricket it was wrong on his part to keep millions of fans in the dark. They deserved some answers from their hero but Dhoni stressed too much on the protocols rather than making a bold statement. In short, he tried to act like a puppet controlled by BCCI which didn’t go down well with the audience.
4) The retirement fog
In India, cricketers are treated as superheroes and that’s why they are the most followed personalities in the country. From their teenage days, their cricketing journey is followed closely. The same is the case with MS Dhoni’s professional life as the fans have been following his work since his debut in 2004. Above all, they have never shied away from celebrating defining moments of his glittering career.
In simple terms, the captain cool has given the Indian cricket a bunch of memorable moments and that’s why his supporters want a perfect swansong for him. However, Dhoni’s retirement plans are equivalent to Hilbert’s problems as both cannot be understood easily. Initially, everybody thought that he might hang up his boots after the 2019 World Cup. Surprisingly he didn’t proceed with the same idea and opted out of the international duties after the ICC event.
At the time fans believed that Dhoni has conveyed a proper message to the selectors about his future in the Indian colours. Sadly it is also not the case that is clear from the recent statements made by the selection panel. It seems that a proper dialogue has not taken place between him and the BCCI. Now it is on his hands to quickly put an end to his epic saga on a positive note by bidding farewell to the game.