Home / Markets / Former India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni quits international cricket

New Delhi: Putting endless speculations to rest, former India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni on Saturday announced retirement from international cricket.

Dhoni has not played since India's semifinal exit from the ODI World Cup last year in July and his comeback to competitive cricket will be limited to this year's IPL, which starts on September 19 in UAE.

India had won their second World Cup title in 2011 riding on the heroics of Gautam Gambhir and then skipper M.S. Dhoni.

His meteoric rise in Indian cricket is the stuff of legends, which was depicted in his biopic Dhoni that starred Sushant Singh Rajput in the titular role. He came into the limelight in 2005 with his blistering 183 not out knock against Sri Lanka in Visakhapatnam while making his trademark helicopter shot an instant national sensation.

The 39-year-old batsman-wicketkeeper is the only captain in the history of cricket to win all ICC trophies. Under his captaincy, India won the 2007 ICC World Twenty20, the 2010 and 2016 Asia Cups, the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup and the 2013 ICC Champions Trophy.

Taking to Instagram, the wicketkeeper-batsman Dhoni shared a video and captioned the post, "Thanks a lot for ur love and support throughout. from 1929 hrs consider me as Retired."

The video had the iconic song 'Mai Pal Do Pal Ka Shayar Hu' from Amitabh Bachchan's 'Kabhie Kabhie' playing in the background, Dhoni shared his incredible journey in the Indian side including his run out in the last game against New Zealand in the World Cup 2019 semifinal.

The announcement came a day after he joined his Chennai Super kings teammates in Chennai ahead of this year's IPL in the UAE.

Ravi Shastri, the coach of the Indian men's cricket team on Saturday said it was a privilege for him to be in the same dressing room as wicket-keeper batsman MS Dhoni.

Massive boots to fill. It's been a privilege and honour to be part of the dressing room and seeing you as a thoroughbred professional at work. Salute one of India's greatest cricketers. Second to none. Enjoy. God Bless MS DHONI, Shastri tweeted.

The 39-year-old's last outing in India colours was during the lost World Cup semifinal against New Zealand.

One of the best runners between the wickets was run out following a hard-earned 50 in that tense game, shattering Indian hopes and leaving him in a state of disbelief.

The reticent man from Ranchi will, however, go down as one of the finest to have played the game for India, turning up for the country in a whopping 350 ODIs, 90 Tests and 98 T20 Internationals.

The last leg of his career was, however, marred by a drop in form, prompting several critics to question his resolve to continue.

But he nevertheless signs off as an ODI legend with 10,773 runs, averaging more than 50 despite batting between No.5 and 7 for a major chunk of his career.

In this April 3, 2011, file photo, Mahendra Singh Dhoni poses with the World Cup trophy in front of the Gateway of India monument, in Mumbai,
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In this April 3, 2011, file photo, Mahendra Singh Dhoni poses with the World Cup trophy in front of the Gateway of India monument, in Mumbai, (AP)

In the Test format, Dhoni accumulated 4876 runs at an average of 38.09 and led India to more wins (27) than anyone else before him.

However, runs are not the parameter on which Dhoni's career can be truly judged.

Considered a punter by some and a master strategist by several others, it was Dhoni's captaincy, wondrous reading of match situations and the jaw-dropping hand-speed behind stumps that had the cricket world mesmerised.

After the announcement, several took to Twitter including legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar and Home Minister Amit Shah to bid him adieu.

World cricket will miss the helicopter shots, Mahi!," Shah tweeted.

Taking a cue from his teammate M.S. Dhoni, Suresh Raina on Saturday announced retirement from international cricket.

His message on Instagram stated: I choose to join you in this journey. Thank you India. Rainas post comes minutes after Dhoni announced over Instagram that he'll not be donning the blue anymore.

Your contribution to Indian cricket has been immense, tweeted Sachin Tendulkar.

The legend retires in his own style as always, msdhoni bhai you have given it all for the country, wrote Ravichandran Ashwin.

“For Indian Cricket, some shoes will never be filled. One of them is Mahi bhai #MSDhoni #dhoniretires," Pragyan Ojha, the former India spinner tweeted.

Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren in his tweet appealed to BCCI for a farewell match for the outgoing cricketer.

I wish to appeal to BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) to hold a farewell match for MS Dhoni; Jharkhand would like to host it.

Hardik Pandya lauded the former skipper on an amazing career and thanked him for being the biggest inspiration in his life.

There's only one #MSDhoni. Thank you, my friend and elder brother for being the biggest inspiration in my career. Will miss playing with you in the blue jersey but am sure you will always be there for me and will keep guiding me 7, Pandya tweeted.

Former India batsman Gautam Gambhir also welcomed Dhoni to the new phase of life and said: "From "India A" to "India" our journey has been full of question marks, commas, blanks and exclamations. Now as you put a full stop to your chapter, I can tell u from experience that the new phase is as exciting and there's no limit to DRS here!!! Well played."

Former India batsman VVS Laxman said it was a privilege for him to play alongside Dhoni.

Seeing Dhoni's journey from a small-town boy into a match-winner and one of the most astute leaders the world has seen was remarkable. Thank you for the wonderful memories, Mahi. It was my privilege to play alongside you and I will always cherish the memories we shared together, Laxman tweeted.

Former England skipper Michael Vaughan also congratulated Dhoni for having a remarkable career and called him the greatest white-ball captain.

The 2011 World Cup win was sachin_rt farewell but masterminded by MS Dhoni ... What an incredible international career ... You could argue the greatest ever white-ball captain and finisher ... Cheers for all the memories MS, Vaughan tweeted.

Talking about Dhoni, Former India spinner and coach Anil Kumble said Congratulations @msdhoni on a great international career. It was an honour to play alongside. Your calm demeanour and the laurels you brought as skipper will forever be remembered and cherished. Wishing you the very best.

A leader even after he gave up the official tag of the leader, Dhoni will be remembered as the nonconformist, who made risks look like well thought-out strategy.

Whether it was handing the ball to rookie Joginder Sharma in the final over of the 2007 World T20 or pushing himself ahead of man-in-form Yuvraj Singh in the 2011 50-over World Cup, Dhoni's instincts rarely failed him.

For the record, India lifted the trophy on both occasions, propelling him to cult status in a country which remains hopelessly in love with all things cricket.

The IPL was also his happy hunting ground where he was the revered 'Thala', leading the Chennai Super Kings to three trophies.

The most significant of those titles came last season when the side made its return to the event after a two-year suspension for its official Gurunath Meiyappan's role in the 2013 spot-fixing scandal.

With inputs from agencies

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