Sydney has been battered by rain in the last couple of days. On January 7, a washout meant India had achieved history by winning a Test series in Australia for the first time ever. However, with the rain refusing to relent, the Indian team was trying to get as much practice as possible for the ODIs beginning on January 12. MS Dhoni, who arrived for the ODI series, had already taken social media by storm with his practice techniques. Now, in a video uploaded on BCCI’s Twitter handle, Dhoni, known as one of the fastest stumpers in world cricket stumped nature in a unique way by beating the rain while practicing for the ODIs.
In a video titled, “When it is raining outdoors, we switch to indoors”. Dhoni is seen batting aggressively by dancing down the wicket and hammering the straight drive past the bowler. On other occasions, he is seen defending off the front foot and also going on the backfoot to combat the short ball. The Australia series presents Dhoni a chance to get back into form as he aims to provide a good showing in the 13 ODIs that will be played before the World Cup.
In 2018, Dhoni has struggled to replicate his finishing prowess which made him one of the best in the world. In the series against South Africa, his highest score was 42* while in the series against England, he struggled to achieve a high strike-rate and finish games as India lost the series 1-2. Even in the Asia Cup and in the series against West Indies, he struggled to post a high score. When he was left out of the Twenty20 International series against Australia, there was plenty of uproar.
However, as a keeper, Dhoni’s prowess has only increased with time. He has acquired the reputation of being the fastest stumper in world cricket and his brilliance in employing the DRS (Decision Review System) has made him a valuable asset. Dhoni is the only keeper in ODI history to effect over 100 stumpings and his value was summed up by Rohit Sharma in the pre-match press conference. “Over the years we've seen the kind of presence he has in the dressing room and on the field. With him being around, there's calmness around the group, it's also a bit of a help to the captain, also going down the batting order & that finishing touch is very important,” Rohit said.
India would be aiming to take revenge on Australia for their previous loss in the 2016 series in which they lost the ODI series 1-4. If they win the ODIs, then Virat Kohli’s Indian cricket team will become only the second team after South Africa to win all formats in Australia.