Former England cricketer Monty Panesar recalled playing against MS Dhoni and how he used to trick the wicketkeeper. During an interaction with the Times of India, Panesar said the Indian wicketkeeper used to instruct his bowlers constantly to bowl in a particular way, while he pretended to have no knowledge about the incoming delivery.
“I remember his tips to the bowlers, especially spinners from behind the stumps. Abhi thodi wide ball daalo. Abhi thoda seedha stumps pe rakho. Ye cross line khelne waala hai, seedha daalo. Ye deep mid-wicket pe chakka marega, thoda wide rakhna. (Bowl a little wide now. Now bowl straight on the stumps. He is going to play across the line, so bowl straight. He will try for a six over mid-wicket, so bowl a little wide),” recalled Panesar.
“I can speak Hindi and Punjabi to a great extent. MSD thought I didn’t understand. I heard everything, but I also acted like MSD, as if I didn’t hear anything. I heard and (then) acted as if I didn’t hear anything. But I knew everything.”
“And believe me, he (Dhoni) has done this a number of times and got wickets. And that’s what I love about MS Dhoni and I am proud that I have played against him,” the former England bowler added.
Panesar, however, credited Dhoni of being able to read other cricketer’s mind, while his opponent failed to read his. “He (Dhoni) was very good at reading other people, but people couldn’t read him. That was another strength. You will never be able to know what is going on in Dhoni’s mind when he is at the crease and India need 15 runs per over in the last three overs. And he gets it. How does he do it? That’s MSD’s secret.”
While Dhoni has finally ended the discussion on his international future on August 15, the cricket enthusiasts will see the former India skipper don the yellow jersey while playing for Chennai Super Kings in the upcoming IPL.