"Thanks a lot for ur love and support throughout. From 1929 hrs consider me as Retired."
And just like that, MS Dhoni retired from international cricket in a typical MS Dhoni way. No one saw it coming. He had retired from Tests in the same way, leaving everyone stunned. For the last couple of years, the cricketing fraternity was divided over Dhoni and there had been speculations about his future. But no one saw this coming with the IPL on the horizon.
A street smart cricketer, a fearless batsman, lightening-quick wicket-keeper, an instinctive captain, and a calm and composed personality: he was all moulded into one. And that's what made him one of a kind. As he bids adieu to international cricket, he leaves behind a huge legacy. In his 16-year long international career, he's shattered records and set benchmarks. He has no doubt etched his name in the annals of cricket history.
As he walks into the sunset, here's a look at the statistical highlights of MS Dhoni's international career.
MS Dhoni's overall career numbers
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MS Dhoni the captain
MS Dhoni captained India in 332 matches - the most times a player has led a team in international cricket. Of the 332 matches, he won 178 matches, the second-most after Ricky Ponting (220). Captaincy is one of the most difficult jobs in cricket. Not many can sustain the pressures that come with it, especially in a country like India where there are expectations, constant spotlight and intense scrutiny. The fact that Dhoni has captained in most matches in international cricket and survived for so long is also a testament to his pressure soaking abilities and his unflinching composure.
- Dhoni has won 41 matches as a captain in T20Is - the most by any captain. The next on the list is Asghar Afghan of Afghanistan with 39 wins.
- MS Dhoni showed India how to win big tournaments. He is the only captain to win all the three ICC trophies: ODI World Cup (2011), T20 World Cup (2007) and Champions Trophy (2013).
- After the disappointment of India's 2007 World Cup exit, Dhoni was handed over the reins for the first-ever World T20 in 2007 and he led a young team to the championship bringing back the smiles to the nation and breathing life back into Indian cricket. Under his leadership, India won the World Cup after 28 years when he lifted the 2011 World Cup Trophy at the Wankhede Stadium. And then went on to do the treble, winning the Champions Trophy in 2013 in England.
- Dhoni also led India to the pinnacle of Test cricket for the first time. They reached the No 1 spot in the ICC Test rankings by beating Sri Lanka at the Brabourne Stadium in 2009.
MS Dhoni the batsman
Dhoni started off as a fearless batsman, a powerful strokemaker. He had this penchant for scoring big runs. In just his fifth international match, he scored 148 against Pakistan in 2005 in Vizag to announce his arrival. He ended up as India's fifth-highest run-getter in international cricket with 17092 runs from 535 matches at an average of 44.74, scoring 15 100s and 108 fifties. He mastered the art of batting with the tail-enders, soaked the pressure and with that calculative mind, took India past the finish line on numerous occasions.
- MS Dhoni is the only player to score 10,000-plus runs batting at No. 6 or lower in international cricket. He's scored 10628 runs at an average of 41.19 with 9 100s and 69 50s. The next best is Mark Boucher of South Africa with 9365 runs at 29.26 with five 100s and 55 fifties.
- Dhoni hit 359 sixes in international cricket - the most by any wicket-keeper batsman.
- Dhoni is the only Indian wicket-keeper batsman to score a double century in Tests. That double ton arrived in 2013 at the MA Chidambaram Stadium, where he hit a match-winning 224 off 265 balls against Australia and also won the Man of the Match award.
- Dhoni's 183 not out against Sri Lanka in Jaipur in 2005 still remains the highest score by a wicket-keeper batsman in ODIs. The next best is Quinton de Kock with 178 against Australia at the Centurion in 2016.
- Dhoni scored 17266 runs in his international career, the second-most by any wicket-keeper batsman behind Kumar Sangakkara who amassed 17840.
Most runs scored by MS Dhoni vs bowlers in ODIs
268 vs Muttiah Muralitharan
232 vs Lasith Malinga
207 vs Shahid Afridi
Most runs scored by MS Dhoni vs bowlers in Tests
297 vs James Anderson
157 vs Nathan Lyon
155 vs Monty Panesar
Most runs scored by MS Dhoni vs bowlers in T20Is
43 vs Jade Dernbach
40 vs Al-Amin Hossain
36 vs Tim Southee
MS Dhoni the finisher
Dhoni's batting evolved over the years. From being a flamboyant six-hitting monster, he turned into a calculative finisher. He aced chase after chase to turn into the best finisher in ODIs.
- Dhoni is the only batsman who averages more than 100 in successful run chases in ODIs. He averages a staggering 102.71. (For batsmen to have played 20 innings or more in successful run chases).
- What adds weight to the above stat is the fact that he's remained not out in international cricket most number of times - 142, including 47 times in successful ODI chases - the most by any player.
- And an interesting nugget: Dhoni has hit winning runs via a six 13 times in international cricket.
MS Dhoni the wicket-keeper
One of the fittest cricketers in the world, MS Dhoni was lightening fast behind the stumps. The bails would get clipped in milliseconds and get the batsman stumped.
- Dhoni made 195 stumpings across the formats during his career - the most by any wicket-keeper.
- Dhoni had 91 dismissals in T20Is, most by any wicket-keeper in the format. The next best is Dinesh Ramdin who is quite far behind with 63 dismissals.
- Dhoni had 829 dismissals in international cricket, the third-highest behind Mark Boucher (998) and Adam Gilchrist (905)
- Dhoni is the only wicket-keeper to feature in 500-plus international matches.
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