A young spinner is at the top of his game! He has just dismissed three Indian batsmen in a matter of six deliveries and one of them is Indian skipper Virat Kohli. The atmosphere in the stadium is electric and the Sri Lankan supporters have gone berserk as Akila’s weaving his magic. Indian batsmen have no clue about what’s happening in the middle! After a brisk start and an authoritative partnership by Indian openers, all of a sudden there’s a procession of wickets. Just when all this is happening, out walks India’s most experienced batsman. Virat departs and Dhoni arrives…
A certain Akila Dhananjaya is in middle of a dream spell and MS is the new man in. India receive three more blows and the procession of wickets continues, meanwhile Dhoni’s witnessing this all from the other end. None of the Indian batsmen are able to decode the bowler and in the process the mystery spinner sends six quality Indian batsmen back to the pavilion one after another. Deja vu of the Ajantha Mendis show! But, he has seen this happen before and he is seeing it again. This man is none other than Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
He keeps his calm, he keeps his cool and plays out Dhananjaya sensibly in the next two overs. Comes down the wicket and nudges a couple of balls down the ground to get used to the pace of the track. Seeing him play from the other end, a certain Bhuvneshwar Kumar decides to battle out this difficult situation along with the former Indian skipper. Exactly like you do in a Test match. Give the initial half hour to the bowlers and dominate them for the rest of the day. To settle down the nerves in the dressing room and steady India’s sinking ship, is the need of the hour for India however.
The visitors who have slumped from 109/0 to 131/7, need someone to save them and it’s this pair of Dhoni and Bhuvi who get the innings back on track and eventually took the Men in Blue over the line. Dhoni stays unbeaten!
Well, there have been questions raised frequently over Dhoni’s place in the Indian squad. Has he still got it in him? Can he survive till the 2019 World Cup? Does he deserve a place in India’s World Cup squad? This was a perfect reply by MS Dhoni to all those who have questioned his ability in recent times. It’s not the first time that Dhoni has played such a knock but on several occasions. And the best part about him is, that he makes sure to stay there till the last run in the chase is scored. This was MS Dhoni’s 71st unbeaten innings in One – Day Internationals. Can you believe it?
MS Dhoni’s the most difficult batsmen to get out. Because he not only scores heavily but also makes sure that his team gets over the line. Quite clearly one of the best finisher in the history of ODIs, isn’t it? Cricwizz takes a look at batsmen who have the most number of ‘Not outs’ in the 50-over format.
Most no. of Not outs (Middle order batsmen)
If you look at batsmen who have played in the middle order and finished games for their respective countries, MS Dhoni and Michael Bevan are two of the best finishers and stats don’t lie! Dhoni scores heavily and remains unbeaten most of the times. If you have a look at his numbers, MS has remained unbeaten 71 times, while Bevan with 67 not outs comes second in the list. These two will remain to be known as the best finishers in the 50-over format. There are no tail-enders included in the list but only middle order batsmen who have played considerate amount of cricket and scored 4000+ runs in their ODI career.
Most no. of Not outs (Batting second)
MS Dhoni tops the list when it comes to batsmen with most ‘Not outs’ while batting second. MS has remained not out 41 times in run chases and his average is just below 50 when India bats second. Former Indian captain, Mohammad Azharuddin had 37 ‘Not outs’ while batting second. Bevan remained unbeaten on 30 occasions, but among all these middle order batsmen, his batting average of 56+ is the best.
Most no. of Not outs (Successful run chases)
|AB de Villiers||58||28||2540||136*||84.66|
In successful run chases, it’s MS Dhoni yet again who tops the list of most number of ‘Not outs’. Dhoni’s average shoots upto 99+ in India’s successful run chases. When it comes to middle order batsmen in this list, AB’s average of 84-odd is the second best. Indian skipper Kohli is not included in this list as he comparatively has less number of not outs and is a top order batsman.
Most no. of Not outs (Batting first)
While batting first, Michael Bevan tops the list for the middle order batsmen with most number of not outs. Australian legends Michael Bevan and Steve Waugh remained ‘not out’ 37* and 30* respectively while setting targets for the opposition. Dhoni with 29 ‘not outs’ comes third in this list but his batting average and runs scored is better than both Aussies. MS has the chance to beat their records if he keeps performing well in upcoming ODIs.
Most no. of Not outs in ODIs (Overall)
In the list of most ‘Not out’ innings, Dhoni is only two ‘Not out’ innings away from breaking Pollock’s and Vaas’s record. Players like Vaas, Vettori and Muralitharan can’t be called finishers because they came to bat towards the end of the innings and hence remained unbeaten for most of their career. Very soon we could see Dhoni at the top of this list too.
All said and done, aren’s these statistics enough to prove who the best finisher in the history of ODI cricket is? MS Dhoni tops most of the lists and puts a huge price behind his wicket. He has won several matches for team India and his fans would hope that the legend continues to remain ‘not out’ forever.