Cricket is a game of comparisons! Sometimes we compare the present generation of players to those in the past while sometimes we compare players who are playing in the same era and who are competing very hard day-in and day-out to stay at the top. Today, we will have a look at two of the most popular personalities in world cricket. We won’t compare them but we shall have a look at the similarities between the two of the most loved cricketers in their respective countries. These two players are Mahendra Singh Dhoni of India and Mohammad Nabi of the Afghanistan cricket team.
Let’s have a look at 7 similarities between Mohammad Nabi and MS Dhoni.
1.Big hitters – MS Dhoni announced his arrival to world cricket in style and got the tag of a six hitter after he smacked his maiden ODI century against Pakistan. One of the primary reasons why Dhoni was selected in the Indian team was because of his ability to hit huge sixes. It has been close to 12 years since MS Dhoni’s been playing cricket for India and he can still hit those big sixes. There was a time where MSD could hit huge biggies at his will – when he was in his prime form.
On the other hand, Mohammad Nabi of Afghanistan is a big hitter of the cricket ball too. The all-rounder from Afghanistan can strike meaty blows and has won many matches for Afghanistan with his willow in the past. One of such entertaining knocks Nabi played was against the Australian cricket team in the United Arab Emirates.
2.Match winners – Both MS Dhoni and Mohammad Nabi come to bat down the order. It’s not easy to bat at number 5 and number 6 when it comes to the limited-over format as you get very less time to get your eye in. But, when you look at these two players, they have won matches for India and Afghanistan respectively on plenty of occasions. Apart from playing crucial knocks with his bat, Dhoni has won matches for India with his glove-work too. Remember the World T20 encounter against Bangladesh where Dhoni sprinted and ran out a Bangladeshi batsman as India beat Bangladesh by 1 run? Nabi on the other hand is a terrific bowler and also a good fielder. His off spin makes him a handy bowler, so it’s their all-round abilities which make both these players genuine match winners.
3.Huge fan following – Indian skipper MS Dhoni has given a lot to the Indian cricket fans with his brilliant captaincy and his heroics with the bat. India won the first ever World T20 under his captaincy, then the 50-over World Cup in 2011, the Champions Trophy in 2013 and India was the number 1 ranked Test team for their longest time in history. When someone achieves so much for his nation, you definitely are going to have a huge fan following, isn’t it? Nabi on the other hand is the most loved cricketer in Afghanistan. If you have a look at social media numbers, Mohammad Nabi has the most followers on Social networking sites for an Afghan player. Fans of Afghanistan truly love and support Mohammad Nabi.
Fans of Mohammad Nabi
Fans of MS Dhoni
4.Both know how to lead the team – Both these fantastic cricketers know how to lead the team. They know how to guide the youngsters in the team and that is all because of their experience of playing at the highest level. Nabi was one of the best captains to lead Afghanistan but the team is doing well under Asghar Stanikzai’s leadership too. As a player and as a captain, Mohammad Nabi’s contributions to the Afghanistan cricket team have been invaluable.
5.Passion for the game – More than anything else, it’s the passion for the sport which makes these two players stand out from most of the others. Whenever they are on the field, they try to give it their all, their 100% and that is what makes them special. MS Dhoni and Mohammad Nabi know how to win matches, keep their calm and be humble at the same time. The great thing about these two world class players is their ability to keep working hard and improving their game instead of showing complacency.
6.Team players – Playing for the team is another important aspect for a sportsman. Dhoni gives chances to young players even if they fail quite a few times. There was a time when questions were raised on Rohit Sharma’s selection in the Indian ODI team. But, Dhoni had faith in him and if you look at Rohit’s numbers, you’ll see the marked improvement. He is the only batsman in history of One-day internationals to have scored two double centuries. So, before anything else, building a solid team of talented youngsters is their priority. For that they are even ready to sacrifice their batting position and ready to take the blows from media and other cricket experts. Mohammad Nabi gave up his captaincy and was ready to play under a junior in the likes of Asghar Stanikzai without complaining.
7.Ability to handle pressure – Last but not the least, the best part of these two fine cricketers is their ability to handle pressure. When 15 runs are needed in the final over, there’s enormous pressure on the batsman. But, every now and again MS Dhoni has overcome those obstacles and ended up on the winning side. He has been the best finisher in the Indian cricket team. There have been other stars like Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina and Virat Kohli too, but Dhoni has the best ability to handle pressure, be it with his batting or be it with his captaincy skills.
Talking about Mohammad Nabi, during the Pakistan Super League, Quetta Gladiators needed 15 runs off the final over and Mohammad Nabi scored those 15 runs against Lahore. The pressure would have been enormous, but Nabi kept his calm and took the Gladiators over the line.
When it comes to handling pressure of the media, MS Dhoni is a master at it. Nabi addresses the media with calm and a cool head too.
This is how Dhoni handles the questions asked by media:
Mohammad Nabi – Calm and composed during a Press conference: