‘If you get hit, don’t overthink’ – Joginder Sharma on MS Dhoni’s words of wisdom before the last over of the 2007 WC final

The over against Pakistan at the Wanderers made Joginder an overnight hero

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Joginder Sharma and MS Dhoni
Joginder Sharma and MS Dhoni. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

Joginder Sharma, the former Indian cricketer, was faced with a daunting task in the 2007 T20 World Cup final. In the match against Pakistan at the Wanderers in Johannesburg, he was needed to defend 13 runs to make India the inaugural champions. But after he bowled a wide and conceded a six down the ground, the odds, well and truly, shifted in the Men in Green’s favour.

However, he managed to induce a false stroke from Misbah-ul-Haq, who scooped the ball straight down the throat of Sreesanth at short fine-leg. Going down the memory lane, Sharma said how MS Dhoni relaxed him prior to the over and it worked wonders for the medium pacer. Joginder mentioned that Dhoni backed him to whatever extent he could have.

He did not hesitate before giving me the ball, says Joginder Sharma

Joginder opined on Dhoni in his column for the Hindustan Times. “Most people remember that I bowled the final of the title clash in 2007, but many don’t remember that I had also bowled the final over in the semi-final against Australia,” Sharma was quoted as saying.

“They needed 22 runs but could score only six and I got two wickets, Brett Lee and Michael Hussey. RP Singh had bowled the second last over in the semi-final and he bowled the second-last over in the final against Pakistan too. It was always following the plan that gave the results for Dhoni.

“So, when the time came in the final, Dhoni did not hesitate before giving me the ball. Pakistan needed 13 runs from the last over, and he told me, ‘don’t think about the runs that they need, think about your bowling. If you get hit, don’t over-think, just concentrate on the next ball. Whatever is the result, be confident you have my support’,” Sharma added.

The over made Joginder an overnight hero as India won the game by five runs. The tournament was also Dhoni’s maiden assignment for Team India as their skipper after making his debut against Bangladesh back in 2004. On Saturday, August 15, the 39-year-old Dhoni hung his boots from international cricket and he made the announcement through his Instagram handle.

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