Mahendra Singh Dhoni had already established himself as one of the deadliest finishers and successful captains in international cricket. But, on 2 April 2011, those two unique qualities combined together and etched Dhoni’s name in the history books.
The moment he smashed Sri Lankan seamer Nuwan Kulasekara for a towering six in the 49th over to end India’s 28-year wait for a World Cup title at the Wankhede stadium will always remain one of the most iconic moments in the history of Indian cricket.
But, that was a long time ago. A time when Dhoni’s willow breathed fire. A time when the Indian fans could lean back and count on India’s No. 1 finisher to get them over the line. Sadly, that era is far gone.
Today, Dhoni is 36 and no longer the finisher he once used to be. The Jharkhand cricketer has traded the finisher’s role for the one of a consolidator. But, that doesn’t mean he’s not important or influential anymore. If the recent run of Team India is anything to go by, Dhoni has noticeably excelled in his new profile.
But, then again, who doesn’t miss those big hoicks over deep midwicket, right? Well, Dhoni might have mellowed down in the game, but when he’s training in the nets, the former Indian captain is still seen smashing a few out of the park.
A similar incident came to fore during Team India’s net session ahead of the first ODI against New Zealand in Mumbai. In a video shared by the BCCI on Twitter, Dhoni can be seen stepping down the track and hammering the bowler for a massive six – similar to the one that earned India their second World Cup title.
— BCCI (@BCCI) October 20, 2017
The BCCI captioned the video, “When @msdhoni hits a big one at the Wankhede Stadium, it invariably takes us back to that famous six in 2011.”
After beating India’s Board President’s XI by 33 runs in their second warm-up game, New Zealand will look to do just the same in their opening ODI enconter with India on October 22.
Team India, who recently defeated Australia 4-1 in the ODI series, will be looking to continue their winning run against the Kiwis and reclaim the No. 1 spot in the ICC ODI rankings, which is currently held by South Africa following their win against Bangladesh following AB de Villiers’ blistering hundred.