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M.S. Dhoni: The man who changed the future of Indian cricket should be permitted to decide his own

The Former Indian Captain was charged by 3 Former cricketers for his continuance in the T20 format

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M.S. Dhoni
Dhoni has been targeted by his ex teammates for underperforming in the 2nd T20 against New Zealand.
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Veturi Srivatsa

Seldom does one come across a captain making it a habit of praising his predecessor. And all the former players who played with either or both differ on Mahendra Singh Dhoni playing in the shortest format, Twenty20, advancing different reasons.

It all started with former cricketers Venkata Sai Laxman, Ajit Agarkar and Akash Chopra opposing the continuance of Mahendra Singh Dhoni in the Twenty20 format after his glaring “failure to pushing things” in the second of the three-match T20 series aginst New Zealand at Rajkot, resulting in India losing by 40 runs.

All the three have put forth different reasons, but their solution is the same, that it’s time Dhoni made way for a youngster to gain international experience. One of them thought that he has no place in the team as a batsman, now that he is not the captain and another felt by pulling out of the shortest format he could prolong his One-Day career.

Ranged against them are Sunil Gavaskar, Ravi Shastri and skipper Virat Kohli himself who all vehementaly differed with the critics, advancing equally valid arguments.

The one man who smartly took the middle path is Virender Sehwag who, while backing his former captain’s selection, wants him to “realise his role” in the team.

The stoutest and the most logical defence of Dhoni, pulling no punches, came from Gavaskar, who was furious at people blaming Dhoni for the Rajkot defeat when the entire team was responsible.

Little Master's stroke to save M.S. Dhoni
Former Indian batsman, Sunil Gavaskar, came in rescue of Dhoni by accusing people for targeting players who are above 30.

One of Gavaskar’s pet theories is people invariably go at a player touching 30 years and are charitable to youngsters who may not have anything to show by way of performance for long stretches. Expectedly, he picked on Hardik Pandya failing to pick leg-spinner Ish Sodhi in successive matches or, for that matter, the openers doing little in Rajkot.

The critics also seem to forget that not long ago Dhoni won a match in the company of No.10 Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, adding 100 runs in Sri Lanka and also the way he rescued India against Australia with Pandya in the first ODI a couple of months ago.

More than Dhoni, the team management must decide where he should bat. Imagine any other player in the team getting pushed like Dhoni had been anywhere between No 4 and No 7 positions. They fancifully call him, as also Pandya, a “floater”. Still, they say they are looking for a “finisher”.

Should Dhoni quit T20 as suggested by some of his former team-mates? It all depends on his place in the ODIs. If he is good enough to play ODIs he must play T-20s also so that he stays match-fit, now that there are most T20s these days. Playing only the Tests is different from playing only one of the shorter formats. It might work for youngsters, but certainly not for those in Dhoni’s age and stage of career.

Kohli and Shastri gave it back to the critics equally forcefully. Kohli echoed Gavaskar’s opinion when he said that Dhoni is being unfairly targeted. He is correct he is not questioned even if he fails in three matches in a row because he is not 35 whereas afer only one failure they say Dhoni’s time is up!

Kohli said in clear words that he and Dhoni know what’s happening out in the middle and they understand what’s best for each and every player.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli also came in support of the former Indian captain.

Ravis Shastri is also equally forthright, describing Dhoni the ultimate team man. He dubbed people who want him out as jealous, waiting for him to fail and end his international career.

Bhuvaneshwar added his bit: No one is bothered (about criticism), he is a legend and his what he is doing benefits the team.

Shastri had the last word: Great players like Dhoni decide their own future. (IANS)

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15 interesting facts about Rohit Sharma: Hit-Man of Indian Cricket

Rohit Sharma achieved the classical knock of unbeaten 208 on his marriage anniversary.

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Rohit Shrama is going through purple patch of his career right now
Rohit Shrama is going through purple patch of his career right now

NEW DELHI: Rohit Sharma’s blazing knock of unbeaten 208 has once again defined his approach towards the Cricket and the way he enjoys his stay at the crease. Recently, he achieved the classical knock of unbeaten 208 on a very special occasion which was his marriage anniversary and dedicated his masterstroke to his wife, who was also present in the stadium at that time.

Rohit has set altogether new benchmarks in the Cricketing world which are undoubtedly formidable records to look up by any youngster. He is unstoppable at the moment and one of the most formidable players going around in the Indian cricket. Once he hits the race peddle, it’s really become an arduous task for the bowlers to hold him down.

With his recent success, Rohit Sharma would be in right frame of mind before moving into New Year and also for any further tours. He started the year with an injury but folded the year with some Midas touch. His batting graph didn’t seem to bog down by the bowling attack of any Cricketing side right now.

Rohit smashed an unbeaten 208 against Sri Lanka
Rohit smashed an unbeaten 208 against Sri Lanka

During some of the past glorious years, Rohit Sharma has been the run machine for team India and willfully justifies his role as a vice-captain of the team. Through his talent and hard work, he has been able to erect some huge batting records and milestones against his name which doesn’t seem to be challenged by anyone at least in the near future.

Even the ICC went gaga over his performance and congratulated him on his new amazing feat.

Let’s take a look at some of the interesting facts related to the Hit-Man of the Men in Blue.
1. In the year 2015, Rohit was been awarded Arjuna Award for his excellence in the Cricket.
2. Before representing India, Rohit used to play for Indian Oil. After proving his mettle in Ranji matches, he got a chance in the playing eleven of the Indian Cricket team.

3. Rohit Sharma is the only second Indian player after Sourav Ganguly to score a century in a knock out match in the ICC World Cup history

4. Rohit Sharma was first Indian to score a century in any T20 match played in India. He scored 101* off 45 balls against Gujarat in the 2006-07 edition of the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 cup

5. Rohit Sharma became the 1st cricketer to score three double centuries in the ODI matches. Apart from him, no one has even scored the second double hundreds of their career. Interestingly, Sachin Tendulkar was the first cricketer to score a double century in the one day format.

Rohit Sharma is the skipper of Mumbai Indians
Rohit Sharma is the skipper of Mumbai Indians

6. Rohit Sharma is the only player who has played four finals of the IPL and won all the times with their respective teams. One stint was with Deccan Chargers and the rest three were with the Mumbai Indians.

7. Rohit Sharma’s score of 208 is the second highest individual score by any captain, only next to Virender Sehwag’s 219 which he scored against West Indies in 2011. During this inning only, Rohit also broke Sir Vivian Richard’s record score of 181, the highest score as a captain.

8. Rohit Sharma is the second Indian to score a century in all three formats of the game. The first player to reach this milestone was Suresh Raina during the 2010 ICC T20 World cup.

9. Rohit holds the record for the highest Individual score by a batsman in an ODI format. He scored 264 against Sri Lanka and got out at the very last ball of the Indian’s inning.

10. Surprisingly, he also has a bowling hat-trick to his name. He did it in IPL when he was the member of Deccan Chargers team.

Rohit Sharma struck half century in his maiden T20 match
Rohit Sharma struck half-century in his maiden T20 match

11. Rohit Sharma made a dream debut in test cricket with a score of 177 which is the second best after Shikhar Dhawan. He also became the third Indian to score two back to back centuries in first two tests that he played, only after Sourav Ganguly and Mohammad Azharuddin.

12. Rohit has hit the highest number of sixes during his innings of 209 runs. In that match, he sent the ball sixteen times over the boundary rope.

13. The first T20 match that Rohit played was against South Africa and was a must-win game for India. He opened the innings and his career with a fifty to his name.

14. The most number of fours scored in an innings is also struck by Rohit Sharma during his blistering innings of 264 against Sri Lanka in 2014. During his stay at the crease, he hit 33 fours.

15. The match in which Rohit Sharma scored 264 runs, Sri Lanka’s total score was 251. So, if we see technically then he single-handedly won that match by 13 runs.