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Salesh Dipak Fernando

Tag: MSD

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MSD

 

A vibrant young man takes charge of a reluctant team. Not many of us would have guessed that particular choice to hand over the reins to a newbie would change the dimensions of T -20 Cricket around the world.  Many of us would dismiss that Sreeshanth catch as pure chance. But there’s more to that moment than what meets the eye.  Misbhah’s hara –kiri moment gave us a glimpse the young man’s greatest asset as a captain – his ability to spring surprises with his moves on the field, a trait which would be his trademark during his tenure as captain.

He becomes the centre of attraction. The cricketing world prepares itself for consistent reverberations of his 183.  But he surprises once again by giving life to a non-existent role in Indian Cricket – The Finisher.  That was his connecting point to an average Indian Fan. A fan who was so used to seeing his team lose from winning positions after the Little Master set the game up so beautifully.  The fan who would constantly see his team lose from winning positions.

For a change, we had a man who knew how to steal victories from the nose of his opponents, a marksman who knew when to hit his target. The World Cup arrives and the whole nation waits with bated breath. Will we or won’t we? But once again the man chooses to surprise us by promoting himself up the order. A captain willing to take charge and finish it off for his team and for the man who had been the flag bearer of Indian Cricket for a very long time – SACHIN RAMESH TENDULKAR.

The Champions Trophy arrives – A trophy which was supposed to be in its last stretch until one moment of Houdini Act changes it all. He hands over the ball to the worst bowler of the day – Ishant Sharma. What the hell was he thinking? The team is already on the verge of losing the match. But all it takes is one delivery to change the course of the match.  The wheels come as ball lands in the hands of fielders who seem to stand in the right positions. Another Victory snatched from the jaws of defeat and Champions trophy gets a lifeline.  It was the leader’s greatest moment of triumph for the team was entirely his own. There were no traces of the past. They were going to be the future of Indian Cricket.

The Agile Young Man is no longer visible but the never say die attitude might stretch itself for one final moment of glory. You never know. Champions have this remarkable ability to spring a surprise when you least expect them to.  It could be a surprise that the cricketing world has never seen before.

Many more Happy Returns of the day to the warhorse who knew how to cross the final hurdle with ease. MSD – These initials will resonate long after the leader is gone.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              

MSD – A VVS 92

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I have been waiting for this moment for quite a while. There were people crying for his blood. The so called Indian cricket experts wanted him to be stripped of his royal robe. Cricketers who were just average in their playing days voicing their opinion on Dhoni’s playing abilities just irks me. Just because you have the mike in hand doesn’t mean u have to blabber.

Have any of the greats from other nations voiced their opinion in the same way. It is because they know Dhoni’s value as a player or is there something happening behind the scenes which forces the Indian cricket experts to say so.

 I have been watching cricket since 1996 even before cricket became a religion. It was a defining year for Indian Cricket. It was only after 1996 cricket turned into a marketing phenomenon.

A lot has changed since then India has become cricket powerhouse. T-20 has turned into the most lucrative opportunity for cricketers who cannot make it to the big league. But one thing has remained a constant, the fragile nature of the fans. Just a couple of failures and people write him off. It didn’t surprise me when I heard similar voices when Dhoni failed.

I waited like an eager fan waiting to see the vintage MSD once more. There’s quite a distinct quality about Dhoni – He knows when to make a statement. He knows his stage. His 100th ODI in India and he made it his own with absolute gusto like a king who regains his throne. 92 precious runs with the team in trouble, 92 runs which showed why he’s still vital to India’s limited overs unit despite the emergence of the younger generation. A very very special 92.

The bowling effort too was top notch and Dhoni once again came into his own with 3 catches, a stumping and his trademark moments of brilliant captaincy. The fact that he did it without his two main spinners Ashwin and Mishra made it all the more special.

Age might be catching up with him but he is not finished yet. Dear cricket fans before you write off a player try to evaluate what the team’s position would be without him. Of course there will definitely be life after Dhoni but give him a chance to time his own swan song.  He deserves that for the way he’s served Indian Cricket.

Dhoni himself has said he will re-evaluate his position after 2016. I guess he’s eyeing another ICC trophy- The World T-20 to be held in India.  Going by his past record in ICC tournaments there’s a very good chance that Dhoni might hold the trophy again.

For now keep calm and cherish Dhoni the player and captain until he fades away from limelight and be a little more graceful in victory and defeat.

 

 

 

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