Dhoni: India's greatest overseas (ODI/T20) captain…

Source :SIFY
Last Updated: Tue, Jan 13th, 2015, 20:22:10hrs
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Dhoni: India's greatest overseas (ODI/T20) captain…
Under MS Dhoni, we are no poor travellers when it comes to the shorter formats of cricket. Very few captains can boast of having so many ODI/T20 wins all across the world.

Outside India, Dhoni has a healthy win-loss ratio of 55-38 for ODIs.

A look at our foreign triumphs under Dhoni…

South Africa: India has played exactly six ODI series and won zero. We haven’t played any international T20 series, just one-off matches. (We even have zero Test series wins after six attempts). It was in such a hostile environment that Dhoni debuted as captain and he emerged triumphant in the T20 World Cup in 2007. The legend of Dhoni was born. India emerged from the ashes of the 2007 ODI World Cup loss and entered its most productive phase.

We have always got thrashed in our ODI series there except in 2011 under Dhoni. Going into the final match, the series was tied at 2-2 and we lost the decider via the D/L method.

Dhoni also won the Twenty20 Champions League in South Africa in 2010.

As Dhoni also captained the only tied (1-1) Test series there, he could be called our greatest captain in South Africa.

Australia: While India did win the mini World Cup in Australia in 1985, we had always drawn a blank in bilateral series. In 2008 we won the Commonwealth Bank Triangular series with Sri Lanka being the third team.

We won only 1/4 matches in the league stage with Australia; but Dhoni continued showing what a big match captain he was by blanking the hosts 2-0 in the finals.

England: While Dhoni could not shake off the 2011 0-8 foreign Test loss, he did turn it around in the shorter formats of the game in England. We won the ICC Champions Trophy in 2013. (The first time we won it outright)

Dhoni throwing the ball to Ishant Sharma in a crucial stage in the final with England and his jump behind the stumps when the hosts failed to hit the tournament winning six off the last ball are memorable moments.

In 2014, we beat England comfortably 3-1. They may be dominating us in Tests in the last three years, but we totally rule when it comes to ODIs, winning at home too.

Sri Lanka: This is by far Dhoni's favourite hunting ground outside India.We won the 2008 series 3-2, the 2009 one 4-1, the Compaq Cup (which also featured New Zealand) in 2009, the Asia Cup in 2010 and the 2012 series 4-1.

No other Indian captain comes close and we have never dominated any country outside India like this. We won the Asia Cup after 15 years and in the final Dhoni effected five dismissals behind the stumps and hit a handy 38.

New Zealand: From 1976-2014, India has won just one series on New Zealand soil: That too quite comfortably by the margin of 3-1 in 2009. Dhoni scored 184 runs in the series at a strike rate of 98 being dismissed only twice. He led from the front like he usually does.

Since we won the Test series too, it was an extremely successful tour. 1968 (when we won the Test series 3-1) and 2009 are our two landmark years in Kiwi land.

West Indies: Dhoni captained just one series here in 2009 which we won 2-1. Dhoni top scored in the batting on both sides with 182 runs being dismissed just twice. Suresh Raina was tried out as captain in 2011 and Virat Kohli in 2013.

Other countries…

In the 2014 T20 World Cup in Bangladesh, we won all our league matches and finished runners-up.

Dhoni has never captained an ODI series in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Zimbabwe.

In India, we have won 14/16 of the last ODI series/tournaments with Dhoni captaining most of them. (Gautam Gambhir led against New Zealand in 2010 and Kohli against Sri Lanka in 2014). That includes the record of the first home country winning an ODI World Cup.

In Tests, Dhoni still has the record against Top 8 nations for most foreign match wins (5, shared with Sourav Ganguly) and most series wins (2, shared with Ajit Wadekar and Rahul Dravid).

However it remains to be seen whether Dhoni can extend his magical touch to the 2015 ODI World Cup to be held in Australia.

The author is a Bengaluru-based journalist and blogger.

He blogs here

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