On This Day: MS Dhoni bats to save MCG Test, announces shock retirement decision

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MS Dhoni has at all times performed it his manner. Therefore, when he despatched shockwaves by Indian cricket by retiring from the Test format in the midst of a collection in Australia six years in the past, there was disbelief, however there was additionally a sentiment that this was the one manner he might be strolling into the sundown.

And so, hours after saving the 2014 Boxing Day Test with an unbeaten 24 on the final day on the MCG, Dhoni — then essentially the most profitable Indian Test captain — additionally grew to become the youngest Indian Test cricketer to announce his retirement.

True to fashion, there was no inkling of the bombshell that was to observe on the post-match press convention.

He spoke about a wide range of points, even saying he would have been prepared to play out the remaining 4 overs of the day. “Maybe they were too tired to bowl four overs,” he stated earlier than including, “That’s a very Aussie answer I have given. Generally I would say ok, ok.” He then laughed. So did everybody else within the room. He was being his normally witty self. Nobody might have guessed that he had been by some of the emotional moments of his life simply minutes in the past.

Between the top of the Test and the press convention, there had been a number of seismic shocks despatched by Indian cricket. Dhoni had reportedly conveyed a “very important message” to BCCI secretary Sanjay Patel. He had then held a tear-eyed crew assembly, the place he had conveyed the decision that may shock the remainder of the world 45 minutes later.

READ | Last Test: MS Dhoni retires in full MS Dhoni fashion

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) then shortly launched a press launch, stating that Dhoni is retiring from Test cricket and citing “the strain of playing all formats” as the rationale behind his decision.

“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 board stated. “BCCI, while respecting the decision of MS 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. Virat Kohli will be the captain of the Indian team for the fourth and final Test against Australia to be played in Sydney.”

The information of Dhoni’s retirement was accompanied by the information that India was coming into a brand new period, beneath captain Virat Kohli, and there was additionally the final Test of the Australia collection arising.

But there was additionally the standard autopsy accompanying Dhoni’s decision to retire. It was famous that he had averaged solely 33 in 17 innings that 12 months. ESPNCricinfo stated within the information of his retirement that Dhoni’s “wicketkeeping has also deteriorated, in particular his ability to move laterally to take testing catches”.

Since 2011, India beneath Dhoni had gained solely two out of 22 away Tests and misplaced 13. He had led India to the No. 1 Test rating in 2009, a place they loved till the tour of England in 2011.

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