MS Dhoni is considered one of the finest finishers in the game. He has set a standard on how to take a game deep and calculate a run-chase. With Dhoni calculating the innings, he often bats slower to keep himself in the middle longer. The approach has caused a lot to forget a few of Dhoni’s explosive knocks. Here are some innings where Dhoni put his calculations aside and went out with all guns blazing.
183*(145) Vs Sri Lanka, Jaipur 2005
While MS Dhoni’s 183* isn’t a brief knock, the performance spread his name across various corners of the country. He had established himself as a batter by then, but his true explosive nature came out in this innings. Chasing 299, Rahul Dravid decided to promote Dhoni to accelerate the scoring.
Dhoni responded brilliantly, taking on the Sri Lankan bowlers and making the chase a one-sided one. He came in and attacked from ball one. His innings consisted of ten sixes, and he finished with the highest score for a wicket-keeper in an ODI innings.
62(38) Vs Australia, Bangalore 2013
MS Dhoni is rarely one to be overshadowed in a partnership. It was game seven of a leveled series, full of runs, and MS Dhoni walked in to bat during the 34th over. His side lost four wickets, but Rohit Sharma was going smoothly at the other end, and the platform was set for a big score.
Although big shots were needed, MS Dhoni was happy to take the back seat and watch Rohit Sharma slam his way his first double-hundred. He hit some big ones and pulled out the helicopter to hit one over the roof. The innings were full of sixes, and MS Dhoni finished, despite being in Rohit Sharma’s shadows throughout the death overs.
50*(26) Vs England, Cardiff, 2011
India was into their last game of a horrid tour and looked desperately for a consolation win. They came into the final game with some motivation, and Virat Kohli did well to set the tone with a century. He had support from Rahul Dravid, who was playing his final game, but both were dismissed early into the final stages of the innings.
With a mini-collapse taking place, MS Dhoni stepped in and took the attack to the English bowlers. He finished with a 26 ball 50. As he batted beautifully throughout, Dhoni’s third fifty of the series finished India’s innings well in the final game. He took India to 304, but that wasn’t enough as India lost. Despite the series loss, MS Dhoni was awarded the man of the series award.
68*(35) Vs South Africa, Gwalior 2010
MS Dhoni walked into bat in the 42nd over with the score at 300. India was in a commanding position, but Sachin Tendulkar started to get a little tired at the other end. While MS Dhoni took the backseat when Rohit Sharma made his first double-century, he was the main contributor when Sachin made his first double-century. By the end of the innings, Sachin Tendulkar was pretty tired, and Dhoni took it upon himself to attack in the death. He took on bowlers like Dale Steyn and kept attacking while Sachin took his time to get to his double century. MS Dhoni’s knock helped India get to a massive total and took Sachin Tendulkar’s pressure as he neared his milestone.
23(10) Vs Australia, Melbourne 2016
After the 2015 World Cup, MS Dhoni’s finishing abilities came into question. He received constant scrutiny and was always under the scanner. With India down 2-0 in a five-match ODI series, MS Dhoni played the briefest of cameos to prove his ability. He only faced nine balls, but the innings had a decent impact on the game. Coming in during the 45th over, MS Dhoni took on the bowlers from ball one. He hit two fours and two sixes and was dismissed in the 49th over. He helped India get to 295 and gave them some momentum going into the innings break. He had a good day in the field, but the bowling couldn’t support him as India lost.
36(18) Vs Australia, Durban 2007
India was playing in the semi-finals of the first-ever T20 World Cup. India came into the tournament with little hopes on them but was in the semi-finals, with Dhoni leading in his first tournament. Yuvraj Singh was India’s major contributor throughout the tournament and hit 70 in the semis to give India a good base for the death. He ensured India would get a good score, and MS Dhoni’s cameo ensured that Yuvraj’s efforts didn’t waste. During the 15th over, Dhoni took on bowlers like Johnson, and Lee, as he supported Yuvraj Singh to get India to 188. His cameo proved to be important as Australia came very close and lost by just 15 runs.