23 required from the last over. 12 required from the last two. In any format, in any tournament, in any context the odds of a team getting over the line with an equation like that will be very minimum. Maybe only someone like MS Dhoni, in his prime, is capable of finishing it.
Well, not quite. Even MS Dhoni in not-so-great form can do it and in style too!
With Axar Patel having 23 runs to defend in the last over, Dhoni smashed 6, 0 (almost a four), 4 (almost a six), 6, 6 in Rising Pune Supergiants’ face-saving four-wicket win over Kings XI Punjab.
MS Dhoni finishing a successful chase with a six:– 9 times in ODIs- 3 times in T20Is- 3 times in IPL- 1 time in Tests#RPSvKXIP— Bharath Seervi (@SeerviBharath) May 21, 2016
The reward? RPS finish seventh while, Punjab finish bottom of the table.
Chasing 173, Pune never looked in contention, but Dhoni played the lone ranger with an unbeaten 32-ball 64 to secure an improbable win for the debutants.
Pune looked down and out at 86 for five in the 14th over before Dhoni brought out his best and smashed five sixes and four boundaries.
The last six was especially extra-ordinary as he, stood in the crease, waited for the full ball on the pads from Axar and brought out the helicopter, to register a famous (yet futile) win.
Suddenly, all those who mocked Dhoni for his 22-ball 8 against KKR look a bit silly.
Watch the last over here and admire the man’s brilliance:
Dhoni set Twitter ablaze too:
April 2010 vs KXIP:16 needed in 6 balls Dhoni did this4 2 6 6May 2016 vs KXIP:23 needed in 6 balls Dhoni did this0 1wd 6 0 4 6 6— Broken Cricket (@BrokenCricket) May 21, 2016
Mahendra Singh Dhoni…WOW. Take a bow. Missed the live action…caught the highlights….I’m so glad that I did 😊😊👏👏— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) May 21, 2016
Only MS Dhoni can infuse so much life into a dead rubber. Our crew reacting to the last ball finish 👻 pic.twitter.com/UEhkPLY9dc— Gaurav Kapur (@gauravkapur) May 21, 2016
Synonyms of ‘Finish’:Complete, end, conclude, close, finalise, execute, accomplish, Mahi, Dhoni…— Roflindian (@Roflindian) May 21, 2016
It does not mean much for his team, but there are few better sights for cricket fans than Dhoni finishing a match in such fashion. What a player!
You can watch the full highlights here: