Sunday, 12 February 2012

Dhoni- Modern Era's Michael Bevan

Dhoni has once again finished the match and helped India secure a stylish victory. India beat Australia by 6 wickets at Adelaide. Dhoni scored 44 runs off 58 balls in the end to see India through. Dhoni has always been a prolific one day player. But the way he has been finishing matches for India has been phenomenal. He comes in at no. 6 and India is always in a precarious position when he comes in and India is chasing a target. Dhoni then takes charge and takes India to victory.

It has happened so many times. He reminds me of Bevan who used to finish matches for Australia every time Aussies were chasing a target. And now in this modern era it is only Dhoni who comes close to Bevan's finishing qualities. Michael Bevan played 232 ODI's scoring 6912 runs at an average of 53.58 with 6 hundreds. Dhoni on the other hand has so far played 199 ODI's scoring 6574 runs at an average of 50.96 with 7 hundreds to his name. So the averages speak themselves how often these guys remained not out and steered the team right till the end. But what qualities make Dhoni such a wonderful finisher and somebody who can be called the next Bevan?

Ice cool in pressure- This is the first and the foremost quality an ODI player must have to be called a good finisher. Dhoni comes in at no. 5 or 6 and the team is usually in trouble when chasing a target or it is in need of a big score if batting first. Thats where this quality becomes important. Bevan used to handle the most precariest of situations with ease. Same can be said about Dhoni. In the recent match against Australia, Dhoni was playing slowly and was not hitting boundaries. The run rate was mounting but Dhoni kept his cool because he knew his strengths and the right time to slog. The lone six he hit was timed to perfection both off the bat and in the context of the match to take India to victory.

Quick runner between the wickets- Thats another quality every one day player must have. Dhoni like Bevan is a very quick runner between the wickets. He converts 1's to 2's and 2's to 3's very easily which puts pressure on the opposition. And it also keeps the scoreboard ticking at a good rate. Dhoni is such a good runner between the wickets that without hitting boundaries he can keep the run rate at 6 an over. In today's match Dhoni hit just 1 boundary. But still he kept the run rate within reach throughout the game. Bevan was also a great athlete and was never short of stamina however long he had batted. The same applies to Dhoni who just never gets tired.

Intelligent Hitting- Cricket has seen many big hitters but few were as clever hitters as Bevan and Dhoni. Bevan had this ability to hit boundaries just at the right time. If the team needed some slogging he did that but if the team needed stability he could give it at the same moment. Dhoni also is a master of this technique. Dhoni starts slogging only when the run rate starts going beyond reach. Dhoni initially scores runs by rotating the strike. If the required run rate stars approaching 8, Dhoni manages to find a boundary to keep the run rate in check. This way the run rate never quite goes out of reach and eventually the target is reached. Bevan in his career won may matches for Australia batting with the tail enders. What made him successful was boundaries at the right time and the ability to pick gaps at precision.

Dhoni is going the Bevan way and is right now the best finisher in world cricket at the moment. Truly Dhoni is modern era's Michael Bevan.
( Another irrelevant similarity between the two is their not so impressive test careers)


  1. i would say he is more Javed Miandad than Bevan

  2. I have seen Michael Bevan playing so much, contrary to other player, but I have heard he is a very good cricketer, I will have to see him playing more often to verify it myself