Mahendra Singh Dhoni has crossed the victory line for his team, single-handedly, a number of times in the past. He is hailed as the calmest head on the cricket field at present. It is through his amazing capability to take the game to the last over while chasing and finishing it off with a six that has given him the tag of ‘Best Finisher’ in ODIs.
Having said that, there have been a few occasions when the captain cool failed to deliver in the last over for India. This has happened so rarely that not many of us remember such occasions.
1st ODI against South Africa in 2015:
India had a stiff target in front of them. Rohit Sharma (150) and Ajinkya Rahane (60) had set up the match quite nicely for MS Dhoni. Requiring 10 runs in the last over, it was an ideal situation for Dhoni yet the Captain Cool failed to deliver and got out on the fourth delivery of the over. Credits for stopping the legendary chaser went to some high class bowling of Kasigo Rabada.
2nd T20I against New Zealand in 2012:
The margin of loss for Indian in this match was as low as 1 run. MS had things in control when he came out to bat. He pushed for singles on every ball to take the game to the last over. James Franklin was given the last over to bowl at India’s best finisher. Sadly for India, Dhoni failed to pick the medium-paced deliveries of Franklin. India’s T20I captain remain unbeaten on 22 of 23 balls in that match.
ICC WT20 ’14 Final against Sri Lanka:
This loss would hurt Mahendra Singh Dhoni for years to come. He was too close to lift his second WT20 trophy as a captain. Virat Kohli had played well to take India to 123 for 9 in 19 overs in the first innings. It was a pretty low total considering in mind Sri Lanka’s batting line-up. Lasith Malinga had the ball in hand in the last over. Dhoni had no answer to Malinga’s perfect yorkers as he managed only three runs of his first five deliveries. India finished at 130 in 20 overs which Sri Lanka chased down quite easily.
IPL 2016 against Sunrisers Hyderabad:
Rising Pune Supergiants’ Skipper Dhoni was facing Nehraji in the last over in one of the IPL matches against Sunrisers Hyderabad. RPS required 14 off the last over but Ashish Nehra had the last laugh, containing the Indian T20I captain in that over to win it for Hyderabad.