Zeenews Sports Bureau
New Delhi: It seems that India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni is going through one of the hardest times of his international career. Such delicately poised is his confidence at the moment that he needs a pat on his back to boost his morale. He was given exactly that in the third One Day International at Delhi against Pakistan except the pat happens to be a Man of the Match award.
Times of India on Tuesday reported that MS Dhoni was not the first choice for the MoM award given to him in the Delhi ODI played on Sunday. It was simply given to him to boost his self-esteem.
Quoting a former cricketer who was in the panel to decide the player of the match, the daily claims that since Team India isn’t faring well for quite some time, it was decided that Dhoni should be given the award.
The decision came as an unpleasant surprise to many, who thought that players like Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Saeed Ajmal had done enough to be the leading contender for MOM than the Indian skipper.
Dhoni top scored in the Indian innings with 36 and later effected two dismissals in the final ODI against Pakistan.
Among those who were expected to land the award, Jadeja chipped in with a valuable 27 and later bowled 10 overs in which he took a wicket and gave away just 19 runs. He also took a brilliant catch in the deep that ended Umar Gul’s innings. Earlier, Ajmal had the Indians on the mat as he took five wickets in just 9.4 overs to end with 5/24 – his best figures in ODIs. Young pacer B. Kumar along with Ishant Sharma, who took three wickets, also put up an impressive performance during the contest.
The daily also reported that Pakistan was unhappy with the decision to award Dhoni MoM award ahead of opener Nasir Jamshed during the first ODI in Chennai.