MS Dhoni played a classic of a knock in his final innings as the skipper wearing the Indian jersey    Getty Images
MS Dhoni played a classic of a knock in his final innings as the skipper wearing the Indian jersey Getty Images

MS Dhoni blazed away to an unbeaten 68 off just 40 deliveries against England in the first warm-up match at the Brabourne stadium. The innings consisted 8 boundaries and two towering sixes. Dhoni scored 23 from the final over of the innings, off the bowling of Chris Woakes to take India A to 304 for 4. Otherwise, a warm-up game, the Brabourne affair drew great attention as this is Dhoni’s last match as a captain representing the India team. Dhoni walked out to bat after Ambati Rayudu retired not out scoring 100 from 97 deliveries. Dhoni was calculative in his approach initially and played the ball late before resorting to powerful hitting.

Dhoni looked cheeky at times in his unbeaten innings and his batting saw a new approach as he played the ball late and tried to find the gaps with sheer timing rather than his usual hard jab. When he came out to bat, Yuvraj Singh was batting past fifty and Dhoni took the anchor role. But soon Yuvraj and Sanju Samson (0) departed in quick succession. This was when Dhoni took the charge and finished things off in style. The fifties for opener Shikhar Dhawan (63), Yuvraj and Dhoni, and an unbeaten century for Rayudu (100) has helped India ‘A’ team finish with 304.

India are scheduled to play 3-ODI and 3-T20I against England. The series begins on January 15 at Pune. The sides will play their second warm-up game at Brabourne on Thursday, January 12. Ajinkya Rahane will lead them in that match, while Suresh Raina will feature in it.