‘He couldn’t achieve what he could have as a batter due to captaincy’ – Gautam Gambhir acknowledges MS Dhoni’s sacrifice
"If MS was not captain, he could have batted at No 3. I am sure he could have broken several ODI records," said Gambhir.
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A striking swing around of sentiments were evident when former India opener Gautam Gambhir showered praise upon the legendary wicketkeeper-batsman, MS Dhoni, hailing him as a selfless captain who prioritized teams’ success over personal glory.
The southpaw, who had previously been vocal in his critique of Dhoni, particularly regarding the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup final, where the 'Captain Cool' played a pivotal innings of 91 not out against Sri Lanka, has now taken a more appreciative stance. Gambhir emphasized that Dhoni's captaincy responsibilities often overshadowed his personal batting achievements, suggesting that had he not been at the helm, he could have rewritten numerous ODI records.
“Because of captaincy, he couldn’t achieve what he could have achieved as a batter. A lot of times as captain you have to keep team first. If MS was not captain, he could have batted at No 3. I am sure he could have broken several ODI records. He has won a lot of trophies, but individually he sacrificed his international runs for trophies,” Gambhir opined while on air on Star Sports.
Gambhir terms Dhoni boon to Indian Cricket
The 41-year-old, further commended the former India captain as a transformative figure in Indian cricket, highlighting his unique ability to transcend traditional cricketing roles. He noted that while wicketkeepers were historically known for their prowess behind the stumps and then their batting skills, Dhoni defied convention by being a formidable batter first and a wicketkeeper second.
“Earlier, they were keepers first and batters later, but MS was batter first and then was a wicketkeeper. It was a blessing for Indian cricket that in MS Dhoni, we got a wicketkeeper-batter who can win you matches from No 7, because he had that power game,” Gambhir concluded.