MS Dhoni has close to 200 stumpings in international cricket and he is arguably the greatest stumper in the history of the game. Some other wicket-keepers might be better than him with their catching technique, but when it comes to stumping, there is probably none better than MS Dhoni.
It’s just the way he collects the ball. He collects it extremely close to the stumps and his hands hardly move even an inch back at the time the ball hits the gloves. That is why he is able to take the bails off a fraction of a second quicker than the other keepers whose hands go quite a bit back after the ball hit their gloves.
While people would have had the memory of quite a few stumpings that MS Dhoni pulled off in big games, some people might not remember his first stumping in international cricket which he pulled off a decade ago in his debut series against Bangladesh.
Rajin Saleh was the batsman whom Dhoni stumped out for the first-ever time in his international career, but do you know who the bowler was?
It might raise your eye-brows because it was not a specialist bowler who provided Dhoni the opportunity to secure his first stumping in an international match. It was the master blaster Sachin Tendulkar who was bowling a bit of part-time leg-spin in that game.
Saleh, who was actually batting pretty well and was in his eighties, came down the track to Sachin but failed to reach the pitch of the ball properly. Once the ball went past him, he was so far down the pitch that Dhoni was never going to miss the opportunity.
Later in an interview, Saleh recalled that stumping and said he felt lucky he was the first victim of Dhoni.
“MS Dhoni has achieved all the success in his life and I feel lucky to be his first victim in the ODIs,” Saleh was quoted as saying.