Dhoni had fallen for a primary ball duck in Chittagong, and within the cruellest of method — run out.
For a lot of the following decade-and-a-half, Dhoni subjected rivals to such agonies — from behind the stumps, with the bat, and as a shrewd captain of a extremely profitable staff.
Three and half months after that forgettable debut, Dhoni introduced his arrival with a breath-taking 148 off 123 balls in opposition to Pakistan in Visakhapatnam.
He wielded the willow like a mace and his batting was much less method and extra pyrotechnic.
He didn’t have the steely defence of a Rahul Dravid or the silken contact of a VVS Laxman however Dhoni made up together with his muscular ingenuity.
He transformed the yorker right into a scoring alternative together with his trademark ‘helicopter shot’, a fruits of violent convulsions involving his arm, wrists and torso.
Dhoni wrote his personal ‘protecting handbook too, barely shifting arms sideways earlier than gathering the ball and reasonably thrusting them down to drag off electrical stumpings.
His greatest legacy, nevertheless, can be as India’s ‘Captain Cool’ who was additionally one in every of one-day cricket’s best finishers.
Dhoni is the one captain to win all ICC trophies — T20 World Cup in 2007, 50-overs World Cup in 2011 and Champions Trophy in 2013. Under him, India additionally grew to become the top-ranked Test nation in 2009.
And he led a cricket-mad nation of 1.three billion with ice in his veins.
“It’s nearly as if he would not have them; a performance-enhancing present from delivery,” India’s former psychological conditioning coach Paddy Upton wrote about Dhoni’s management over emotion in his memoir.
Dhoni’s penchant for taking inspiring choices was finest illustrated within the tense closing of the 2007 World Cup, when he famously requested an unheralded Joginder Sharma to bowl the ultimate over in a tactical masterstroke in opposition to Pakistan.
He additionally remodeled himself right into a formidable ‘finisher’, securing India’s 2011 World Cup victory by hitting a six within the closing in opposition to Sri Lanka.
Age, nevertheless, appeared to meet up with him within the World Cup in England final yr.
He struggled to time the ball even in opposition to mediocre assaults and failed to supply the late assault that he as soon as routinely delivered.
Those wild, flowing tresses that was as soon as a rage among the many youths in rural India, have now been changed by greying sideburns.
An enigma all through his profession, Dhoni give up Test cricket in the course of India’s 2014 sequence in Australia.
On Saturday, he once more shocked an unsuspecting nation, asserting his exit from worldwide cricket with a cryptic Instagram message.
His fairytale rise from India’s cricketing backwaters of Jharkhand seems like a storyline straight out of a Bollywood script. In actuality, it is the opposite approach spherical.
Known for his fondness for bikes and army fatigue, Dhoni’s stellar profession impressed a 2016 biopic “M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story” which was a roaring field workplace success.
Such has been his affect that successor Virat Kohli nonetheless considers Dhoni his captain.
“The world has seen achievements, I’ve seen the particular person. Thanks for every little thing skip. I tip my hat to you,” Kohli mentioned on Twitter on Saturday.