‘Mai hundred maara Test cricket mein, bas yaar’ – When MS Dhoni wanted to announce his retirement after maiden Test ton
VVS Laxman shared two memorable instances involving MS Dhoni.
Updated - Aug 17, 2020 11:55 am
Mahendra Singh Dhoni was always about composure. He came with a terrific reputation of being a hard hitter and aggressive batsman, but his nature was invariably calm. He never displayed his emotions even in extreme situations. Imagine a captain who has just hit a six to win the World Cup himself, anybody would have gone silly and jumped and cried but the captain cool just smiled and absorbed all the emotions inside him.
But as Mahi has retired now, many are sharing the stories and their own experiences with the legend from their cauldron. VVS Laxman, former Indian batsman shared two instances which he can never forget. Firstly, an interesting story when the wicketkeeper took the dressing room by surprise when he said that he will be retiring at the age of 24.
Mai hundred maara Test cricket mein, bas yaar: MS Dhoni
The former captain was known for his free-flowing bat swing and attack from the first ball. He was a limited-overs batsman in the beginning and became a part of Test set up a year later only. But within a few Test matches came a gritty century from the stumper against the arch-rivals Pakistan in their own backyard in 2006.
“Two instances of MS Dhoni that I will never, ever forget,” said Laxman on Star Sports’ Cricket Connected, “No. 1 was when he got his first Test hundred against Pakistan in Faisalabad. I still remember him coming back into the dressing room and loudly saying ‘I am going to announce my retirement – MS Dhoni, mai hundred maara Test cricket mein, bas yaar [I, MS Dhoni, have hit a century in Test cricket…that’s it!]. I don’t want anything more from Test cricket!’ And we were shocked and surprised to hear that. But that’s what MS Dhoni always was.”
He drove the team bus from the ground to the hotel in Nagpur: VVS Laxman
The second illustration was when the right-hander became the full-time captain of the Test team in 2008. He had just led the team in two Tests before that but the confidence that he possessed was his all-time asset. It was in Nagpur and Laxman was playing his 100th Test match. Dhoni who was known to be a grounded person since the beginning asked the bus driver to join the team in the back and drove the team bus from the stadium to the hotel.
“The second time was in a Test match against Australia in Nagpur,” Laxman said. “He was the captain of the Indian team because Anil [Kumble] announced his retirement two matches before in Delhi. And MS Dhoni asked the team bus driver to just go and sit behind, and he drove the team bus from the ground to the hotel in Nagpur, and we were all awestruck. The captain of the Indian team, driving the team bus!”
“That’s how he used to enjoy his life. For him, being a cricketer was doing everything on the cricket field, but outside the field, everything was normal.”
That was the aura of MSD. The guy who came from a small town and conquered the world of cricket but still remain grounded. Dhoni in his retirement video shared the song, “Main pal do pal ka shayar hu”, but with the number of memories and moments of joy he has given us he can never be a ‘pal do pal ka shayar’.