IPL 2022: In numbers – MS Dhoni, an IPL colossus, a legendary finisher | Cricket News

NEW DELHI: It’s not over till it’s over. It’s not over till Mahendra Singh Dhoni is at the crease, wielding his willow like a sword, decimating the bowlers and sending the ball to all parts of the ground, taking his team to victory, snatching victory from the jaws of defeat.
Over the years, we have seen MSD the finisher at his very best. The 2011 ICC ODI World Cup final, where he pushed himself ahead of the in-form Yuvraj Singh and then finished off the match with that unforgettable six is ​​something no Indian fan will ever forget.
In the IPL too, Dhoni has time and again played incredible finishing knocks, both while his team first batted and chased. Though his bat fell silent over the last couple of seasons, a rejuvenated Dhoni, devoid of the responsibility of captaincy, is once again setting the IPL stage on fire this time and keeping CSK’s very slim chances of qualifying for the playoffs alive.


In Pics, IPL 2022 Match 33: Vintage Dhoni condemns Mumbai Indians for seventh loss

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Mahendra Singh Dhoni rolled back the years on Thursday with 16 runs off the last four balls of Chennai Super Kings’ successful chase over Mumbai Indians who are languishing at the bottom of IPL points table. (BCCI/IPL/PTI Photo)

On Thursday, Dhoni the finisher was at his very best against the Mumbai Indians and played a finishing knock to ensure that the most successful team in the history of the Indian Premier League stays winless in this edition. This season, in the 7 games he has played so far, Dhoni is averaging 60 with the bat.
CSK in fact are a team who holds the record for the most number of last ball finishes while chasing. On eight separate instances, the four time champions have won a match, while chasing, off the last ball of the match.

With an utterly nerveless display of power-hitting, Dhoni got Chennai home to secure a thrilling three-wicket victory on Thursday. When he walked out to bat at number 7, CSK were 102-5, still needing 54 runs off 31 balls. Mumbai was well and truly in the driver’s seat and when Ravindra Jadeja fell for a 8 ball 3, CSK were down to 106-6 and staring down the barrel of another defeat. But Dhoni was still around.
The former India captain, who is the epitome of staying cool at the crease, no matter what the match situation is, took the game deep into the final over before smashing left-arm fast bowler Jaydev Unadkat for 6, 4, 2, 4. The first delivery Dhoni faced in that over was sent over the long-off ropes for a six and he flicked the next one for a four. The 40-year-old then ran two and sent the final delivery, an attempted yorker, past short fine leg for a four to win the match in style for the men in yellow.
It wasn’t a surprise then to see captain Ravindra Jadeja bow to Dhoni after the match.

Dhoni has had one of the longest and most successful careers in the IPL. Though he has never hit a hundred, largely due to the fact that he bats down the order, his strike rate has never once fallen below 100 since 2008 – since the inception of the IPL. As the graphic below shows, Dhoni’s best year with the bat was 2013, when he amassed 461 runs. But he recorded his best average of 83.2 in 2019. Interestingly, CSK lost in the final to Mumbai Indians in 2013 and in 2019.
Overall in the IPL, in which Dhoni has played for two teams – CSK and Rising Pune Supergiant – he has scored a total of 4866 runs in 227 matches, with the highest score of 84* and an average of almost 40. He has an overall IPL strike rate of 135.73 and has smashed as many as 226 sixes.

Dhoni not only has one of the best strike rates in the IPL but also has an overall IPL average that is better than most Indian top guns. The fact that he largely remains not out after his match-winning knocks of course adds to the average. The graphic below shows how Dhoni’s average of 39.88 is better than those of the likes of Sachin Tendulkar, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Rishabh Pant and others.


Meanwhile, Mumbai Indians became the first team ever to lose their first seven matches in an IPL season. Captain Rohit meanwhile, became the first batter in IPL history to get out for a duck for the 14th time.
Interestingly, in the four worst starts ever for a team in IPL history, the most successful team features twice. In the 2014 edition, they lost their first five matches of the season. RCB and Delhi Capitals had lost their first six games of the season in the 2019 and 2013 seasons respectively.


Rohit Sharma’s expression and the anguish on his face when Dhoni started clobbering Jaydev Unadkat in the 20th over really said it all. After the match Rohit said they know how calm MS Dhoni can be under pressure. It was another reminder that it’s never over till MSD is around.


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