Parthiv Patel was chosen for the three-Test collection, the primary to be performed in opposition to India in Pakistan after 15 years, and Rahul Dravid saved the wickets within the 5 One-day Internationals.
“Dhoni nearly toured with us to Pakistan [in 2004]. Sourav was very keen to have him in the squad. He was on the borderline, and it was one of those decisions that could have gone either way. As it turned out, we selected a successful Test team, and he didn’t make it,” Wright advised IANS.
“That was obviously when Dhoni had started to come into discussions at the national level. Sourav had very good things to say about him and always encouraged youngsters who came into the set-up. But you never know how things would have worked out. That’s when I first started to hear about him,” recalled Wright.
Dhoni ultimately made his One-day International debut in December 2004, in opposition to Bangladesh in Chittagong, aged 23 years and 169 days. And he made his Test debut in December 2005, in opposition to Sri Lanka in Chennai, when he was 24 years and 148 days.
“Dhoni seemed to be reading the game an over ahead. That’s always a sign of a good, strategic captaincy,” former New Zealand captain Wright stated. “He’s obviously one of India’s greatest captains along with one or two in the modern era. He has certainly been fantastic for India. His record speaks for itself.”
While recalling his affiliation with Dhoni, Wright identified that he was with the dasher for a short while, however stated he was extremely impressed by many facets of the teen’s cricket intelligence and character.
“It was obvious that Dhoni was not only a very gifted cricketer but also an extremely intelligent one. He was a very good listener who didn’t say much in his first series [under me], but was observing and learning all the time. I thought at the time that he had a big future in front of him,” stated the articulate former left-handed opening batsman.
Was Dhoni a born chief or labored himself up for captaincy? “I can’t make that judgement because I wasn’t there [for long to see him captain]. He just played just one series [under me as coach]. What I heard from afar was that he didn’t have any difficulty in taking the reins over when there were more experienced players in the side and they seemed to respect his leadership which is always a sign of leadership ability,” Wright stated.
The former New Zealand captain appears most impressed by Dhoni’s means to vary gears whereas batting and adapt to totally different conditions of a recreation — one thing that he witnessed in India’s residence ODI collection in opposition to Pakistan in 2005.
“He got a hundred in his career’s fifth One-day International [in Visakhapatnam] while Virender Sehwag looked quite slow. That was a brilliant innings. It was one of those hundreds for which you would stand and say: “This man could be very particular’,” he stated referring to Dhoni’s brisk 123-ball 148.
“And within the fourth ODI, got here in after openers Sachin Tendulkar and Sehwag had placed on a superb stand and he got here in at No.3. The most attention-grabbing factor was that he was fairly comfortable simply to rotate the strike and provides the batsman who was in, and I believed that it was actually clever and sensible cricket. And that was certainly one of his traits — not solely as a cricketer however as a pacesetter, significantly in one-day cricket, all through his profession. Technically he was very sound,” emphasised Wright. Dhoni scored 64-ball 47 in Ahmedabad, although Pakistan gained the sport.
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