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Revitalized Dhoni aspires for series clinching victory over New Zealand in the 4th ODI

MS Dhoni Has Rediscovered His Old Form And Will Look To Script A Series Clinching Victory Over The Kiwis On His Home Ground.

PTI | Updated on: 25 Oct 2016, 05:42:16 PM
MS Dhoni and Virat Kohli (Image Source: Getty)


Indian ODI captain Mahendra Sindh Dhoni has rediscovered his sublime touch in the twilight of his career and would look to continue the regained form to outclass New Zealand in the fourth ODI on Wednesday.

Success in the Ranchi ODI will guide India to a series-clinching victory over the Kiwis. 

A batsman, wicketkeeper, and a cool-headed skipper, all rolled into one, Dhoni promoted himself to No.4 in the last ODI in Mohali and set up the seven-wicket win in the company of Virat Kohli to give the hosts a 2-1 lead in the five-match series.

Dhoni's 91-ball 80 in Mohali also took him to the club of 9,000 runs. He became the first to reach there with an average of 50 or more.

The limited-overs captain and Ranchi's favourite son may be seen in his last appearance at the Jharkhand State Cricket Association Stadium Complex which has hosted three ODIs and one T20I, with India winning all of them except for a rain-marred one-dayer.

Dhoni's deputy, Kohli, will also look forward to return to the venue where he has scores of 77 not out and 139 not out in his two unconquered ODI innings.

Regarded among the best batsmen of modern era, Kohli once again showed how dangerous he can be after being dropped early in his innings in Mohali.

He came on his own after the reprieve on six and scripted a flawless 154 not out off 134 balls to take India past New Zealand's 285 in the third ODI.

It was Kohli's 26th century -- 22 in winning causes, same as Sachin Tendulkar -- and 14 in successful chases. In their decisive 151-run third wicket partnership, Dhoni showed a renewed optimism and hunger while Kohli was at his clinical best.

It would be too early to say that Dhoni has gone past his prime. However, the 35-year-old has himself acknowledged his diminishing prowess in Mohali, something that prompted him to elevate himself to No.4 in the batting line-up.

"To some extent I am losing my ability to freely rotate in the middle. If it keeps on happening for a long time, tendency is you don't fluently rotate strike and that was what was happening with my batting," he had said.

Back home where it all began for Dhoni, it will be an emotional match for the Indian skipper, who has won every ICC trophy and would look to make the outing a memorable one.

Dhoni's return to form would be a dangerous signal for the Kiwis, who are desperate to prove a point after their 0-3 whitewash in the Test series.

Despite opting to rest their three premier bowlers in the Tests -- Ravichandran Ashwin, Mohammad Shami and Ravindra Jadeja keeping in view the gruelling home season ahead -- India have done reasonably well in the bowling department.

The biggest surprise has been part-time off-spinner Kedar Jadhav, who has taken six wickets at less than eight runs an over, and is joint second in the wicket-takers' list behind leg-spinner Amit Mishra. 

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First Published : 25 Oct 2016, 05:34:00 PM