Former Indian cricketer, MS Dhoni is hailed as one of the greatest skippers around the world. He took the Indian cricket team to the number one position under his leadership, having won all the major tournaments and series. The former skipper left the entire country shocked when he announced his retirement from the cricket world last year in August.
However, that wasn’t the first time that Dhoni shocked everyone with his decision. Earlier he had caught an entire nation off-guard when he announced his retirement from the longest format of the game, midway during India’s tour to Australia at the MCG on December 30, 2014.
MS didn’t say anything at the press conference or at the presentation ceremony, instead, the announcement of his retirement was so sudden that it was made later through a BCCI press release. Years after he announced his retirement, Dhoni’s Test retirement still continues to be one of the biggest mysteries of Indian cricket.
Indian head coach Ravi Shastri talked about Dhoni’s retirement from the longest format midway through the tour. In his book, “Stargazing: The players in my life” Shastri claimed that Dhoni was still one of the fittest cricketers and was only 10 Tests away from playing the 100th Test of his career. He wrote:
“MS was India’s, in fact the world’s, biggest player then with three ICC trophies under his belt, including two World Cups, and some very impressive silverware from the IPL. His form was good, and he was just 10 matches shy of completing 100 Tests,”
“One of India’s greatest Test Captains under whose leadership India became the No. 1 team in the Test Rankings MS Dhoni, has decided to retire from Test Cricket citing the strain of playing all formats of Cricket,”
In his book, Ravi Shastri hailed MS Dhoni as one of the top-three fittest players in the team, and back then, Dhoni’s decision didn’t make sense to him. He said:
“Still one of the top-three fittest players on the team, he would have the opportunity to boost his career stats if nothing else. True, he wasn’t getting any younger, but he wasn’t that old either! His decision just didn’t make sense,”
“All cricketers say landmarks and milestones don’t matter, but some do. I approached the issue in a roundabout way, probing for an opening to make him change his mind. But there was a firmness to MS’s tone that stopped me from pushing the matter any further. Looking back, I think his decision was correct; also brave and selfless,”
“Giving up on the most powerful position in cricket in the world, in a way, couldn’t have been easy,”