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Why MS Dhoni refuses to see too far ahead in cricket

In a short video, former India captain MS Dhoni speaks about his childhood, ways to find motivation and what cricket has taught him.

cricket Updated: Aug 03, 2017 22:50 IST
Bihan Sengupta
MS Dhoni is a former Indian cricket team captain.
MS Dhoni is a former Indian cricket team captain.(PTI)

There aren’t many cricketers who are as calm as Mahendra Singh Dhoni. Whether it is a nail-biting situation, tension running high, the team standing on the cusp of winning or losing, Dhoni hardly lets his emotion get the better of him. The only Indian captain to have won all the three ICC tournaments, he’s faced many such situations. In a video uploaded by Eternal Explorer on YouTube, India’s most successful Test captain says it’s the uncertainty that makes the game a great leveller.

“The game of cricket teaches me a very important lesson. I feel cricket is a great leveller. If you’re not humble, it teaches you how to be. It starts with the flip of a coin; you don’t know whether it would be heads or tails,” Dhoni says in that three-minute video. “You’ll often find that when you’re going through a rough patch, the best bowler from the opposition will be bowling to you and the weakest fielder taking a one-handed catch. These are things that only happen in cricket.”

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Nearing ODI landmark

Dhoni played 90 Tests before quitting the longest format of the game, during the 2014-15 tour of Australia. He is now just four short of earning 300 ODI caps. He hogged the limelight with his fearless batting style and ability to finish chases by scoring big coming down the order. A wicketkeeper-batsman, Dhoni is still India’s best bet to finishing matches.

“When I started playing, I never thought I would play for India one day. So, I never played keeping that in mind. When we played cricket during our school days, our only motive was to win a game even against the best of teams,” Dhoni said. “It’s going to get a bit difficult if you’re going to decide your future through milestones. It’s not about them. What it is about is how much you can contribute, how good you are and then take it forward.”

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However, Dhoni is 36 and it won’t be long before he hangs up his boots. His critics have already speculating, but Dhoni isn’t too bothered. “I try to keep it very simple. I’m somebody who tries to live in the present. I don’t think too much about the past or the future. All I keep saying is I learn from my past. Of course, you need to have goals but I know the most important thing is the present. What you do in the present affects your future,” he said.

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Dhoni also speaks about motivating oneself to achieve goals in life. Saying that nothing motivates him like winning laurels for his country, he said: “We all go through the same thing. But at the end of the day, to reach your mark, you have to struggle in life; small decisions you have to make can have a big impact in life. You don’t need anything special. You yourself can be a motivation. Your parents, family, country… Every individual is different and derives motivation from different things.”