MS Dhoni – The most charismatic leader ever! Part-1 (Dhoni vs Dada)
If you have won an ODI World Cup, World T20, ICC Champions Trophy and took your team to No.1 in Test rankings, then you have to be something special, if not amazing. Mahendra Singh Dhoni, our beloved ‘Best Finisher’, the man who beat Usain bolt behind the stumps with lightening quick glove work has achieved these super human feats.
A leader is the one who leads by example, sets the tone with the bat/bowl and fielding positions and most importantly a leader makes a team out of individuals. These individuals possess different cultures, behaviour and they might be speaking different languages as well. To get everyone under an umbrella is not as easy as you think.
Dhoni has done it plenty of times and remains calm albeit situation becomes tough to handle. That’s why we call him ‘Captain Cool’.
The debate – Dhoni vs Dada
There is a theory that Dhoni led India to glory with some of the best players under his helm while Dada was the one who actually built the team.
Ganguly took control at a very crucial phase of Indian cricket. The team was badly affected by the match fixing scandal and some of the big names were banned leaving a damaged team. He picked some of the budding talents and nurtured them. He backed players like Yuvraj, Sehwag and Zaheer even when they were off colour and the rest is history. All these players played a very important role in Dhoni’s era.
We agree that the Bengal Tiger built team India and most his players shined when Dhoni was in charge but this doesn’t mean that we should take anything away from Dhoni. His contribution in Indian cricket is unparalleled. Even though most of the players already established themselves in the side, the team was once again going through an transitional period when Dhoni took over.
Sachin, Sehwag, Yuvraj, Dravid, Ganguly, Zaheer Khan and Harbhajan Singh all featured in the 2007 World Cup in Caribbean and they had a debacle as they were eliminated in the first round itself. It was a new low in Indian cricket. Everything was so messed up. It was a time when even the best were losing confidence in their abilities. Sehwag was dropped from the side, Sachin was forced to bat in the middle order and Harbhajan Singh was dropped in favour of Ramesh Powar and Piyush Chawla.
MS Dhoni led India to T20 World cup title the same year with a comparatively inexperienced side. Not only this, he gave confidence to the senior players too. Getting the best out of the players is also an art and Dhoni is the Picasso of it. He brought Sehwag back in top order and allowed him to bat freely, Sachin was given breaks that prolonged his career and as far as the youngsters go, India would have never got its Hitman, had Dhoni not persisted with Rohit Sharma. There can be no better example of giving a youngster confidence than this.
South Africa’s poor show in ICC tournaments
Think about it. South Africa has always been among the top-3 sides in the world but sadly, they don’t have any ICC trophy in their shelf. The Proteas never lacked talent. They continued to produce some quality players and still do.
They have produced world class players, be it batting, bowling or fielding. Alan Donald, Shaun Pollock, Jacques Kallis, Jonty Rhodes, Herschelle Gibbs, Graeme Smith, AB de villiers, Hashim Amla and Dale Steyn to name a few. They enter almost every ICC tournament as favourites but the ICC trophy eluded them since winning the Champions Trophy in 1998.
Why? Simple, they lacked a good leader. They lacked an individual who can maximize the resources they have got. They lacked a captain who can hold the team together in crunch situations. I think it sums up how good a leader India’s former captain is.
Even in the toughest times, Dhoni has stood his ground firm. He always accepts defeat with a smile on his face and let’s his teammates take the centre stage after a victory. Both Sourav Ganguly and MS Dhoni are the icons of Indian cricket so instead of arguing over who is better we should cherish the moments they have given us.
“A good leader doesn’t tell you what to do; instead he shows you how to do it”.