Despite all the negative press about aging MS Dhoni, the former captain held the Indian innings together and kept a billion dream alive during their ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 semi-final against New Zealand at Old Trafford, Manchester on Wednesday. Once the legend was out, India's hopes also vanished in thin air.
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Chasing a 240-run target, India's famed top order succumbed to Kiwi quicks, with openers Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul and skipper Virat Kohli could manage a combined total of three runs, one for each. Then, the Rishabh Pant and Hardik Pandya produced another identical score, 32 each.
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The onerous but ungrateful work of rebuilding the innings once again became Dhoni's responsibility. India did find a perfect antithesis to Dhoni's waiting game with Ravindra Jadeja taking the game by the scruff of its neck, at least till the 48th over. Then all hell broke loose.
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First, the wicket of Jadeja. But with Dhoni, the greatest finisher the game has seen, India were still the favourites, and the legend just launched a six off the first ball tro bring down the target the equation to 25 off 11.
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A dot then, Dhoni found himself short while going for the second run. And breaking Indian hearts was Martin Guptill, who hit the target from short fine-leg. It effectively ended India's campaign.
Watch that nerve-wracking run-out here:
WHAT A MOMENT OF BRILLIANCE!— ICC (@ICC) July 10, 2019
Martin Guptill was ðÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂðÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂ¯ to run out MS Dhoni and help send New Zealand to their second consecutive @cricketworldcup final! #CWC19 pic.twitter.com/i84pTIrYbk
Dhoni made 50 off 72 balls with the help of one four and one six in what many believe to be his last innings in India colours.