Took 10 Days to Convince Sourav Ganguly to Let Him Keep Wickets – Kiran More on MS Dhoni’s National Call-up
MS Dhoni made it big at the top level. Image Credits: AFP

Former Indian selector Kiran More played a key role in selecting MS Dhoni back in 2004. Dhoni was coming up in the ranks in the domestic circuit during that time and had a magnificent tour of Kenya with India A team. The man from Ranchi scored 362 runs in the tri-series, including two centuries and he was the cynosure of all eyes.

However, Kiran More revealed that it took 10 days to convince Sourav Ganguly to let MS Dhoni keep wickets. India was on a hunt for a wicket-keeper batsman after Rahul Dravid had kept the gloves in the 2003 World Cup. Players like Dinesh Karthik, Parthiv Patel and Deep Dasgupta were not able to grab their opportunities.

“My colleague saw MS Dhoni first, then I went and saw him. I especially flew down and saw him get 130 runs out of the team’s total of 170. He smashed everyone. We wanted him to play in the finals as a wicket-keeper. That’s when we had a lot of debate with Sourav Ganguly and Deep Dasgupta who played for India then and who was from Calcutta. So, it took about ten days to convince Sourav and his selector to ask Deep Dasgupta to not keep wickets, and to let MS Dhoni keep wickets,” More mentioned while talking to Curtly and Karishma show.

More recalled that Dhoni kept the wickets in the North Zone game and smashed bowlers like Ashish Nehra to all parts of the ground.

“MS Dhoni kept wickets in that game, and he smashed everyone including Ashish Nehra from the North Zone. Then we sent him to Kenya for that India, Pakistan and Kenya triangular series and he scored about 600 runs there. After that, everything is history,” More said.

The former BCCI selector feels one needs to create chances for players like MS Dhoni, who brings X-factor to the table.

“You need to create a chance for a cricketer who seems different and special from others, who looks like a match-winner. He was the complete package, and it was only a matter of time before he clicked. It is like a gamble. You have to gamble on the right horse. We gambled on the right horse, and that day he won the race for us,” More concluded.

Dhoni didn’t look back after he received his opportunity to play for the national team. The right-hander was promoted to number three against Pakistan and he grabbed his chance as he smashed a fine knock of 148 runs. Dhoni went on to become India’s most successful wicket-keeper, captain and a fine finisher.