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M.S. Dhoni, Captain, Indian Cricket Team

Dhoni is iconic because his superstardom symbolises the arrival of small-town India. His onfield style—the celebrated cool—also stands for a confident young India.

M.S. Dhoni, Captain, Indian Cricket Team
Illustration by Sorit
M.S. Dhoni, Captain, Indian Cricket Team
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+0553

Spare a thought for Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s doctor: what a harrowing time must he have whenever he tries to find the Indian cricket captain’s pulse. Nothing, it seems, can cause mortal palpitations that give away lesser mortals. Not a flurry of middle-order wickets, not a demoralising balls-to-runs ratio, not the size of the boundary he has to clear, nor the ‘hopes of a billion’. Then, spare a thought for where he is from. Since year one, Indian cricket’s great and good have come from Bombay and Delhi, Bangalore, Madras and Hyderabad. Who would have thought that the world’s No. 1 Test team, the world’s No. 1 ODI team, the World Cup-winning team, the T20 World Cup-winning team, the IPL champion, and Champions Trophy champion would, at one time or the other, be led by a man whose Aadhar card is issued from Ranchi?

Then, spare a thought for the leader. Traditio­nally, Indian cricket has more camps than a game reserve. Bombay-ites hang out with Bombayites. Kann­adigas hiss in Kannada. Look at the scorecard of the next match­—Kohli (Delhi), Raina (Kanpur), Ashwin (Chennai), Mohit Sharma (Bahadurgarh)—and ask yourself under whose tutelage did they earn their spurs.

Finally, spare a thought for the media which went after him because his wife was spotted sitting next to Vindoo Dara Singh, because he didn’t utter a word on spot-fixing, because he ran a sports management firm. Without offering a word in defence or otherwise, Dhoni quietly brought home the mini-World Cup. Yup, he’s from Ranchi.

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4. Shatrughan Sinha The bazooka’s never gone quiet. Recently heard offering cover fire for pal Yashwant Sinha’s covert Modi-sniping.   5. Ram Vilas Paswan The LJP chief, part of all Central coalitions from 1996, is a spent force, but nurses hope for actor son Chirag’s political future

 

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