Former Indian captain MS Dhoni played a massive part in Virat Kohli’s sharp rise in international cricket. As MS Dhoni relinquished his limited-overs captaincy to Virat Kohli, he remained in the side to ensure that Kohli had all the guidance he needed in his early days. As former West Indian keeper, Denesh Ramdin pointed out, Dhoni also helped the present Indian skipper regain his form with the bat.
It was in 2014 during the tour of England that Virat Kohli suffered a horror run in Tests as well as ODIs. After managing only 134 runs across five Tests at 13.40, it took some time for the right-handed batsman to recover. The five-match ODI series at home against the West Indies was where MS Dhoni’s tactics were significant in helping Kohli hit the strides.
Denesh Ramdin recalled the time in 2014 when Virat Kohli was undergoing a lean patch after coming off the England tour. The veteran cricketer stated that they were in for One-day series when in the first game, the 31-year old got out cheaply while batting at number three. In response, the then skipper did not leave him out and instead pushed him to number four for the next clash. He scored 62 that began the road to getting back to his feet.
“I remember one instance when Virat (Kohli) wasn’t getting any runs, he just came off an England series. We were there for a one-day series and we got Virat out once or two cheaply. He (Dhoni) didn’t drop him. He said look, rather than bat at number three, I’m going to put you at four or five. In one game, he (Kohli) came in at number four or five and scored a century (half century, actually) and that was it. He was back to his normal self,” the Trinidad-born cricketer said as quoted by Hindustan Times.
“I think Virat Kohli going to be one of the best batsmen who’s ever played the game” : Denesh Ramdin
The 35-year old further said that understanding players are crucial instead of omitting them when struggling. Ramdin reckons that Virat Kohli will go on to become one of the best batsmen in the world and credited MS Dhoni for his overall development.
“Sometimes, understanding your players, not discarding them is important. Other teams might have gotten rid of their players, he still backed Virat. I think he’s (Kohli) going to be one of the best batsmen who’s ever played the game. His passion as well for the game and you have to give Dhoni a lot of credit,” Ramdin added.