MS Dhoni slammed 16 runs off the last over to help India win the tri-series in the Caribbean © Getty Images
By S S Ramaswamy
Mumbai: Jul 12, 2013
After guiding India to a nail-biting victory over Sri Lanka in the tri-series final yesterday, Mahendra Singh Dhoni has again staked claim to the title of the best-ever finisher in the history of ODI cricket.
Former captain and chairman of selectors Dilip Vengsarkar admits that he has not witnessed a better finisher than the Jharkhand dasher.
“It was a great fight-back from the young Indian brigade after losing initial games. Dhoni has a great temperament and, by far, he’s the best finisher I have ever seen. He just doesn’t get flustered at any stage of the game,” Vengsarkar told PTI during an interaction on Friday.
He was referring to India’s triumph in the tournament after losing their first two round-robin matches against Lanka and hosts West Indies in the earlier part of the tournament and Dhoni’s match-winning unbeaten knock which guided India home to victory by one wicket from a precarious situation in the low-scoring tri-series final at the Queen’s Park Oval.
The T20 format, which has gained tremendous popularity all over the world has made players innovate much more than ever before. But Dhoni has shown his killer instinct much before it gained currency.
Even before displaying his superb finishing skills in the T20 format, especially in the attention-grabbing Indian Premier League, ‘Captain Cool’ had shown what he is capable of in the slog phase of a run-chase in the 50-over games.
Back in 2005, Dhoni, who was a new entrant in the Indian team had smashed an unbeaten 183 in just 145 balls batting at No 3, his highest ODI score to date, with an incredible tally of 10 sixes and 15 fours and the Lankans had then too borne the brunt of his bludgeoning blade.