Overview of MS Dhoni
Mahendra Singh Pansingh Dhoni, also known as Mahi, MSD, and Captain Cool, is a former Indian international cricketer. He was born on July 7, 1981, in Ranchi, Bihar (now Jharkhand), and comes from a Hindu Rajput family. Dhoni’s father, Pan Singh, worked in junior management positions in MECON and moved from Uttarakhand to Ranchi. Dhoni has a sister named Jayanti Gupta and a brother named Narendra Singh Dhoni.
Early Life and Education
Dhoni attended DAV Jawahar Vidya Mandir in Ranchi, Jharkhand, where he excelled in multiple sports such as badminton, football, and cricket. He played as a goalkeeper for his football team and cricket for a local club. During 1995-98, Dhoni showed impressive wicket-keeping skills at the Commando Cricket Club and was picked for the Vinoo Mankad Trophy Under-16 Championship for the 1997-98 session.
After completing high school, Dhoni focused on cricket. During 2001-2003, he worked as a TTE (Travelling Ticket Examiner) at Kharagpur Railway Station, under South Eastern Railway in West Bengal.
Prior to marrying his schoolmate Sakshi Singh Rawat, MS Dhoni fell in love with Priyanka Jha, whom he met in his early 20s. In 2002, when Dhoni was trying his best to get selected in the Indian team, his girlfriend died in an accident. Dhoni also dated South Indian actress Lakshmi Rai. Mahendra Singh Dhoni married Sakshi Singh Rawat, his school friend from DAV Jawahar Vidya Mandir, on July 4, 2010. At the time of their marriage, Sakshi was studying a hotel management course at Taj Bengal in Kolkata as a trainee.
On February 6, 2015, the couple gave birth to a baby girl named Ziva. At the time, Dhoni was in Australia, and the 2015 Cricket World Cup was a week later. He did not travel back and quoted, “I am on national duty, other things can wait.”
In 1998, MS Dhoni was selected for the Central Coal Fields Limited (CCL) team, after having played for the school cricket team and club cricket. Deval Sahay, who selected him for CCL, was impressed with his dedication and cricket skills and pushed for his selection in the Bihar team. For the 1999-2000 season, he got selected in the senior Bihar Ranji Team at the age of 18. He was not selected for the East Zone U-19 squad (CK Nayudu Trophy) or the Rest of the India squad (MA Chidambaram Trophy and Vinoo Mankad Trophy). Bihar U-19 team advanced to finals but couldn’t make it. Later, he was selected for East Zone U-19 squad for the CK Nayudu trophy. While the East Zone lost all the matches, Dhoni finished last in the tournament.
Rise to Recognition
During 2002-2003, while playing in the Jharkhand Team for Ranji Trophy and Deodhar Trophy, Dhoni’s hard-hitting batting style and agile wicket-keeping skills started gaining attention. He made his debut for the Indian cricket team in December 2004 in an ODI against Bangladesh, but it was during the 2005 ODI series against Pakistan that he made a mark with his performance. In the second ODI, he scored his first international century and helped India win the match. He was subsequently selected for the Indian squad for the 2005 ICC Trophy in England.
International Career and Achievements
Dhoni’s first major international achievement came in 2007 when he led the Indian cricket team to victory in the inaugural ICC World Twenty20 held in South Africa. India defeated arch-rivals Pakistan in the final, and Dhoni was named the player of the series. In 2008, he was appointed the captain of the Indian cricket team, and he led the team to victory in the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup held in India, ending a 28-year drought for the country.
Records and Awards
Dhoni’s career has been filled with numerous records and awards, making him one of the most successful cricket captains of all time. Some of his notable achievements include:
|ICC ODI Player of the Year
|Dhoni was named the ICC ODI Player of the Year twice in 2008 and 2009, becoming the first player to win the award twice.
|Most T20I Matches as Captain
|Dhoni has captained India in 72 T20I matches, the most by any captain in the format.
|Most Wins as Indian Captain in Tests and ODIs
|Dhoni has led India to victory in 27 Test matches and 110 ODIs, the most by any Indian captain.
|Fastest Indian Wicketkeeper to Reach 4,000 Runs in ODIs
|Dhoni achieved this milestone in just 114 innings, faster than any other Indian wicketkeeper.
|Most Dismissals by an Indian Wicketkeeper in Tests and ODIs
|Dhoni holds the record for the most dismissals (294) by an Indian wicketkeeper in Tests and ODIs.
|Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan
|Dhoni has been awarded the Padma Shri (2009) and Padma Bhushan (2018) by the Government of India for his contributions to cricket.
After leading India for almost a decade, Dhoni announced his retirement from Test cricket in December 2014, and from international cricket in August 2020. He remains one of the most beloved and respected cricketers in India and around the world, known for his cool demeanor and leadership skills on and off the field.