Former Indian chief selector Kiran More has said the bringing MS Dhoni to the national team was a gamble that paid off. More is credited for fast-tracking Dhoni’s push to the international arena.
In a chat show with West Indian great Curtly Ambrose, More said that he was left awestruck after watching MS Dhoni for the first time, adding that it took 10 days for him to convince Sourav Ganguly to let MS Dhoni keep wickets in the Duleep Trophy finals in 2004. MS Dhoni played a blistering knock of 60 of 47 balls in the second innings for the East Zone.
“My colleague saw him (Dhoni) first, then I went and saw him. I especially flew down and saw him get 130 runs out of the team’s total of 170. He smashed everyone. We wanted him to play in the (Duleep Trophy 2004) finals as a wicket-keeper. That’s when we had a lot of debate with Sourav Ganguly and Deep Dasgupta. It took about ten days to tell Sourav and his selector to ask Deep to not keep wickets, and to let MS Dhoni keep wickets,” More said.
After a successful outing in the Duleep trophy, MS Dhoni was sent to Kenya for a triangular series involving India A and Pakistan A. Dhoni scored around 600 runs in the season and was picked in the Indian team who was on a lookout for an attacking wicketkeeper-batsman. More said that he is extremely pleased to put his money on the right horse.
“Dhoni kept wickets, he smashed Ashish Nehra and all the bowlers from North Zone and then we sent him to Kenya for the triangular series involving India A, Pakistan A and Kenya.
“MS scored about 600 runs and after that rest his history. Dhoni had all the package to become a match-winner. It was only a matter of time before all of them clicked together,” More added.
“It’s like gambling, you need to gamble on the right horse. We gambled on the right horse and that day he won the race for us. I am happy sitting at home and I give a lot of credit to my fellow selectors as well,” More concluded.
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