MS Dhoni is one of the calmest players one may ever see, since his success stories are enough to make a noise on and off the field. He has won all three prestigious ICC trophies as a captain for India. He has been a part of the ICC ODI team of the year for a record eight times and was the captain on five occasions.
Moreover, he has been a recipient of the esteemed Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna (2007), Padma Shri (2009), and Padma Bhushan (2018). MS Dhoni, other than his trophies, is known for his brave decisions on the field.
He is regarded as the best captain the world has ever seen for a reason. He knows how to get the best out of a player and convert potential into performance.
Let’s see the top 5 cricketers who sparked under Mahi’s leadership.
Rohit is undoubtedly the best opening batsman in the world at the moment. Rohit made his debut as a middle-order batsman for India and primarily played at that position for a long time.
He struggled and kept moving in and out of the team for six years. In the first 40 odd ODI matches, he played Rohit averaged close to 25. Even after a stellar show in the 2011 season, Rohit lacked consistency and ended up averaging just 12 runs in the 14 ODIs played next year.
It was MS Dhoni, who promoted Sharma to open for the team, in early 2013, and the rest is history. Today, he averages more than 57 in ODIs as an opener and has scored 27 centuries at the position. Also, he is the only batsman in the world to score three double centuries and four centuries in ODIs and T20Is, respectively. MS just gave a new life to Rohit’s career and must be credited for his decision.
Suresh Raina, probably the best friend MS has had on the cricket ground. Raina never shies away from praising Mahi, and rightly so because MS had a great role in building Suresh’s career. MS Dhoni was often criticized for favouring Raina over other players.
But Raina always shut the mouth of his critics with his performances. Even when criticized for dropping Yusuf Pathan, Dhoni backed Raina against Australia in the 2011 WC quarter-final, which proved to be a major factor in the match.
Both Raina and Dhoni have played together almost every match for CSK since 2008 and share a great bond. Raina confessed that he learned a lot while playing under Dhoni’s captaincy. Incidentally, both Raina and Dhoni retired from international cricket on the same day, 15th August 2020.
Ashwin is an inseparable part of the Indian test team and has given numerous match-winning performances over the years. Ashwin played for Tamil Nadu for many years but came into the limelight only when he played for CSK under Dhoni’s captaincy in 2010.
His career got a big boost after playing for CSK, as he received an India call up very soon. As long as Dhoni was in the team, Ashwin played all the formats for the Indian team. He was part of the historic wins of 2011 and 2013.
Today, Ashwin has more than 400 test wickets in just 79 test matches. He is crucial for India’s success, especially in home conditions, where he is altogether a different beast with the ball in hand.
Ravindra Jadeja’s stature in the Indian team has been on a growing note since 2018. He was dropped from the limited-overs side after the 2017 Champions Trophy, but made a comeback in 2018. His contribution with the bat, of late, has secured his place in all three formats of the game.
Just like Ashwin, his stint with the CSK earned him a permanent spot in the Indian team. He was bought by Dhoni-led CSK in 2012 for a mammoth $2 million, making him the most expensive bowler that year.
Jadeja had already debuted for team India in the shorter version of the game, but a couple of bad games in the 2010 World T20 Cup in the West Indies meant he was out of the team.
After having a good outing for CSK in the 2012 season, Jadeja came back to the limited-overs side. He made his test debut against England in December 2012, but his career sky rocked after the Border Gavaskar Trophy in 2013. He became the best bowler in ODI rankings and proved to be the man responsible for the 2013 Champions Trophy win.
Ambati Rayudu’s story hasn’t been a pleasant one. He saw a lot of ups and downs in his career. He debuted for India in 2013 but was never a regular face in the playing 11. The controversy after the “3D” remarks from the Indian selector informally closed doors for the Hyderabad batsman in the Indian team.
Rayudu joined CSK in 2018, and it took him just one season under Mahi to prove his worth and earned himself a place in the Indian team for the England tour. In 2018, for the first time in his career, he scored over 500 runs in an IPL season. It was the reason for his call-up for the national team.
Since then, he was part of the team and was all but a certainty for a spot in the World Cup squad, but unfortunately missed out. He is not playing for India, but is still a vital cog of the CSK squad since 2018.