Born on July 7, 1981, 'Captain Cool' Mahendra Singh Dhoni turned 38 on Sunday. MS Dhoni remains one of the world's biggest cricket icons the game has ever known.
MS Dhoni's career started with a duck against Bangladesh on December 23, 2004. But he went on to become one of the greatest batsmen in history. In ODIs, MS Dhoni soon became an unstoppable force. It was, however, as India's captain, that MS Dhoni made his mark on the cricket world.
MS Dhoni's cool demeanour and poker face in tough, pressure situations became part of cricketing folklore.
Dhoni used his cricketing wits and smarts to help India win the 2011 ODI World Cup, 2007 T20 World Cup and Champions Trophy. No other man has captained his country to victory in all 3 ICC tournaments.
A small town boy from Ranchi developed himself to become the best captain and wicketkeeper in the world. It was Dhoni's cool and composed nature that made him an icon with India's youth.
A surprise choice for the captaincy in 2007, MS Dhoni-led India in 200 ODIs, of which India won 110 matches. At home, he captained the team to 43 wins out of 73 matches. Till now, MS Dhoni has represented India in 90 Tests, 348 ODIs and 98 T20Is. He has scored more than 10,000 ODI runs, and near about 5,000 runs in Test cricket.
Dhoni, who ended India's long drought of a genuine wicket-keeper batsman, holds the record of most number of stumpings in international cricket - he has affected 123 stumpings.
There was a lot of hype around Dhoni as soon as India started their campaign for the 2019 edition of the world cup. The 38-year-old wicketkeeper-batsman and former captain, also the longest-serving Indian skipper till date was playing his last
World Cup. However, his journey so far in the World Cup hasn't been the way he would have wanted it to be.
Currently playing in his 4th World Cup, MS Dhoni has been continuously criticised for his lack of intent with the bat. Dhoni, who is considered one of the best finishers of the game, has been seen struggling to find boundaries and accelerate the run rate.
MS Dhoni's 28 off 52 balls against Afghanistan, one of the weaker teams in the tournament raised several concerns. Dhoni took some flak during India's failed run chase against England, when India suffered its loss in the tournament.
Despite recent lack of form, Mahendra Singh Dhoni will always be remembered as one of the best captains in the history of not just Indian cricket.