MS Dhoni, the finisher with a Midas touch, was back in his elements for Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) against Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in an Indian Premier League (IPL) 2017 match.
MS Dhoni hit a 34-ball 61 not out to help his team cross the finish line in the last over. Chasing 177 to win, RPS lost a couple of quick wickets to get reduced to 98 for three. But Dhoni ensured that his team finish with a win, despite needing 47 off the last three overs.
MS Dhoni clinched the last-ball thriller with an imperious cover drive and the entire Pune dug-out, including skipper Steve Smith, gave him a standing ovation.
“There is no run-rate that is high. It boils down to how well the opposition bowlers execute. So seven, eight, nine, ten, doesn’t matter. What matters is keeping your calmness,” MS Dhoni said after the match.
“It’s about who handles the nerves well. Overall, I feel that in the last four overs, you can get close to 60 runs provided the opposition plays badly and you play well,” he added.
Calmness has indeed been a hallmark of his cricket career but Dhoni was under severe pressure this IPL for his barren run with the bat. But he finally lit up the tournament with his trademark big strokes.
“It was a difficult one. But it was important that since we had strikers in the back of the innings, it was important we took Rashid (Khan) out of the game,” he said referring to Hyderabad’s top bowler, an Afghan.
“You can’t always win games like this. I think we did very well.”
Smith praises Dhoni
Dhoni was praised by Pune captain Steve Smith, who said the Indian veteran did what he has always done with tremendous consistency.
“Got pretty close towards the end, but MS did what’s he’s done for such a long period of time. Under pressure, he comes good again,” Smith said.