Their first ever ICC tournament and making it straight to the final is something written in the stars. MS Dhoni and Virat Kohli are two of the most popular players in the team and for the country. The two are also always capable of fireworks at will, but they also have tremendous respect for one another and at no point has there been any sort of animosity between the two of them.
Kohli has time and again emphasized the importance of having Dhoni around to discuss tactics when the chips are down. He understands the importance of his inputs and is always looking up to him to discuss something when he feels there is a need. He doesn’t always use Dhoni’s advice however, and there have been times that Kohli has admitted to having felt his own way was better. That does not take anything away from the fact that Kohli allows Dhoni to set the field up when required.
DRS – Dhoni Review System:
One of the biggest advantages that Kohli has as a captain is Dhoni’s astute ability to read the game well. With his superior view from behind the stumps, Dhoni is aware of the areas that the batsmen are targeting and is able to tell Kohli the setup he feels will provide a breakthrough for the team.
Dhoni also has the gift of judgment when it comes to LBWs. All he requires from the bowler’s end is to know whether or not the ball has hit the bat; once he gets the confirmation, he knows when to review the decision. Such an advantage is a real bonus for the team when there’s only one review available. Statistics have also shown that Dhoni is aware of when to show the “T”. His average strike rate while reviewing is much higher than many of the other players in the world.
The mentor passes the baton:
In all words, it is the proverbial passing of the baton from Dhoni to Kohli. Kohli has played his entire international cricket under the tutelage of Dhoni, so he would have picked up a trick or two. All that is required is for Dhoni to pass on everything else he knows before sailing into the sunset.
By Rohit Nair