Reacting to MS Dhoni’s retirement, former England spin bowler, Monty Panesar, recalled the past times when he played former India captain. It was special for Panesar when the two played against each other.
MS Dhoni was known to be a shrewd and thinking captain on the field. He would often devise incredible wicket-taking strategies and field set-ups. Dhoni would often guide his spin bowlers to try a certain tactic to get the batsmen out.
Monty Panesar recalled, “I remember his tips to the bowlers, especially spinners from behind the stumps. Abhi thodi wide ball daalo. Abhi thoda seedha stumps pe rakho. Ye cross line khelne waala hai, seedha daalo. Ye deep mid-wicket pe chakka marega, thoda wide rakhna. (Bowl a little wide now. Now bowl straight on the stumps. He is going to play across the line, so bowl straight. He will try for a six over mid-wicket, so bowl a little wide). ”
Panesar added that he could understand what Dhoni was speaking words as he also speaks Hindi and Punjabi fluently.
Panesar said, “I can speak Hindi and Punjabi to a great extent. MSD thought I didn’t understand. I heard everything, but I also acted like MSD, as if I didn’t hear anything. I heard and (then) acted as if I didn’t hear anything. But I knew everything.”
Panesar continued, “And believe me, he (Dhoni) has done this a number of times and got wickets. And that’s what I love about MS Dhoni and I am proud that I have played against him,” the former England bowler added.
Panesar further said, “He (MS Dhoni) was very good at reading other people, but people couldn’t read him. That was another strength. You will never be able to know what is going on in Dhoni’s mind when he is at the crease and India need 15 runs per over in the last three overs. And he gets it. How does he do it? That’s MSD’s secret.”