On This Day 2007: The Beginning Of The MS Dhoni Era In Indian Cricket


14th September 2007 is a date that will be etched in the minds of Indian cricket fans for posterity. It was on this date that India and Pakistan played out a thriller in the 2007 T20 World Cup Group Stage match in South Africa.

This was a match which was a sign of things to come, as the MS Dhoni era in Indian cricket began with this epic win in the 2007 T20 World Cup.

Inserted into bat by Pakistan, India rode on Robin Uthappa’s scintillating half-century and MS Dhoni’s 33 to post 141/9 in their 20-over quota. Mohammad Asif scalped four wickets for Pakistan.

In the run chase, the match swung like a pendulum. Even though Pakistan lost wickets at regular intervals, Misbah-ul-Haq kept his side in the hunt. The equation came down to 12 runs needed off the last six deliveries, and Sreesanth was handed the responsibility of bowling the final over.

In the first 5 deliveries, Pakistan scored 11 runs and needed one run to win off the last delivery. Misbah then attempted a single, but Yuvraj Singh’s throw caught him short of his crease. The match ended in a tie, resulting in a bowl out.

While Yasir Arafat, Umar Gul, and Shahid Afridi were designated as the bowlers by Pakistan, India opted for Harbhajan Singh, Virender Sehwag, and Robin Uthappa. The Indian bowlers hit the stumps in each of their three attempts, while the Pakistani bowlers failed to do so.

As a result, India won the bowl out, and recorded their first-ever victory in their T20 World Cup journey. Recalling the match, Chennai Super Kings’ cricketer Robin Uthappa opened up on the leadership skills of Dhoni.

“I remember after we tied that game, we went to the dressing room and got to know that it’s a ‘bowl out’, I went straight to MS (Dhoni), and I said- ‘Bro, I’ve to bowl,’ and he didn’t even bat an eyelid. He just said yeah, ok, you’ll bowl,” said Uthappa.

“And for me when I look back at it in retrospect makes me understand the kind of leader he was. He is the kind of guy when you’re really sure about your skills and your own ability, he backs it. And he backed it in his first game as captain.”

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