He chose to prioritize winning trophies over achieving more international runs.

Former India opener Gautam Gambhir has praised MS Dhoni, hailing him as a selfless captain who prioritized leading India to major ICC trophies over his own personal records. Gambhir, who has been critical of Dhoni in the past, acknowledged Dhoni’s sacrifice of his international runs for the success of the team.

In a video on Star Sports, Gambhir stated, “Because of captaincy, he couldn’t achieve what he could have achieved as a batter. A lot of times as captain you have to keep the team first. If MS was not captain, he could have batted at No. 3. I am sure he could have broken several ODI records. He has won a lot of trophies, but individually he sacrificed his international runs for trophies.”

Gambhir also praised Dhoni as the first wicketkeeper-batter of India who possessed the ability to change the game with his batting. He said, “Earlier, they were keepers first and batters later, but MS was a batter first and then a wicketkeeper. It was a blessing for Indian cricket that in MS Dhoni, we got a wicketkeeper-batter who can win matches from No. 7 because he had that power game.”

Dhoni has been one of India’s most successful ODI batters, scoring 10,773 runs in 350 matches at an average of 50.57, with 10 centuries and 73 fifties.

Gambhir also credited Dhoni for the success of current Indian captain Rohit Sharma. Speaking after Rohit became the second fastest batter to score 10,000 runs in ODIs, Gambhir said, “Scoring 10,000 runs was not easy for him. Rohit Sharma is Rohit Sharma today because of MS Dhoni. MS backed him continuously in his initial struggling phase. If he wants to leave a legacy behind, not in terms of runs but as a captain, a lot will depend on how he backs the young players. It will be interesting to see how he grooms the upcoming players.”

Rohit recently led Team India to a 10-wicket win in the Asia Cup 2023 final against Sri Lanka in Colombo.

Overall, Gambhir’s praise of Dhoni indicates the former’s change of perspective and appreciation for Dhoni’s selfless leadership and contribution to Indian cricket. Dhoni’s sacrifice of personal records for the team’s success highlights his dedication and commitment to the national side. His influence on players like Rohit Sharma showcases his ability to nurture and support young talent, further solidifying his legacy in Indian cricket.