Born in Ranchi, Bihar (now in Jharkhand), His exceptional wicketkeeping skills allowed him to become the regular wicketkeeper at the Commando Cricket Club (1995–1998), he was picked for the 1997/98 season Vinoo Mankad Trophy Under-16 Championship, where he performed well. From 2001 to 2003, He worked as a Travelling Ticket Examiner at Kharagpur railway station under South Eastern Railway in Midnapore, in West Bengal. In Indian domestic cricket he played for Bihar and then for Jharkhand Cricket team. Dhoni's performance in the 2002–03 season included three half-centuries in the Ranji Trophy and a couple of half-centuries in the Deodhar Trophy, as he started gaining recognition for his lower-order contribution as well as hard-hitting batting style.
Dhoni made his ODI debut on 23 December 2004, against Bangladesh in Chittagong, and played his first Test a year later against Sri Lanka. He played his first T20I also a year later against South Africa. In 2007, he took over the ODI captaincy from Rahul Dravid and he also selected as T20I captain of India in this year. In 2008, he was selected as Test captain. His captaincy record in Tests format was mixed, successfully leading India to a series win against New Zealand in 2008 and the Border-Gavaskar Trophy (home series in 2010 and 2013) against Australia. In other formats, Dhoni is the first cricketer to be a winning captain of all three major ICC trophies, as under his captaincy, India won the 2007 ICC World Twenty20, the 2011 Cricket World Cup, and the 2013 ICC Champions Trophy, the most by any captain. He also led India to victory in the 2010 and 2016 Asia Cup. Additionally, under his leadership, India won the 2010 and 2011 ICC Test Mace and 2013 ICC ODI Championship. He has scored 17,266 runs in International Cricket (including 10,000 plus runs in ODI Internationals).
He is the captain of Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in the Indian Premier League, leading them to the final on 10 occasions and winning in the 2010, 2011, 2018, 2021 and 2023 editions of the league, as well as winning the Champions League T20 two times, in 2010 and 2014. He is the 7th cricketer have scored more than 5,000 runs in the IPL, as well as being the first wicket-keeper to do so.
Dhoni received India's highest sports honour, the Major Dhyanchand Khel Ratna Award in 2008 for his outstanding achievements and the Government of India honoured him India's fourth civilian award Padma Shri in 2009 and third civilian award Padma Bhushan in 2018. He is the only cricket captain in the world to win all three of the Cricket World Cup, ICC Men's T20 World Cup and ICC Champions Trophy. Dhoni holds an honorary rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the Parachute Regiment of the Indian Territorial Army, it was presented to him by the Indian Army in 2011 for his service to the nation as a cricketer. Dhoni is considered one of the most popular cricketers in the world. He is a leading brand endorser celebrity in India. The 2016 film, M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story was made as a biopic on his life.
He announced his retirement from Tests on 30 December 2014, and stepped down as captain of T20Is and ODIs in 2017. On 15 August 2020, Dhoni retired from all formats of international cricket and continues to play in the IPL.
Early life and background
Dhoni was born in Ranchi, Bihar (now in Jharkhand) and hails from a Hindu Rajput family to parents from Uttarakhand. He is the youngest of three children of Pan Singh and Devaki Devi. His paternal village Lwali, is in Jainti Tehsil, Lamgara block of the Almora District of Uttarakhand. His parents moved from Uttarakhand to Ranchi, Jharkhand where his father worked as a pump operator in junior management position in MECON Colony situated in Doranda area in Ranchi. Unlike Dhoni, his uncle and cousins spell their surname "Dhauni".
Previously Dhoni was the goalkeeper for his DAV Jawahar Vidya Mandir school's football team, but after seeing his goalkeeping skills, coach Keshav Ranjan Banerjee, one who inspired Dhoni to be a cricketer, picked him to play cricket for his school team. His exceptional wicketkeeping skills allowed him to become the regular wicketkeeper at the Commando Cricket Club (1995–1998). Based on his performance at club cricket, he was picked for the 1997/98 season Vinoo Mankad Trophy Under-16 Championship, where he performed well.
From 2001 to 2003, Dhoni worked as a Travelling Ticket Examiner (TTE) at Kharagpur railway station under South Eastern Railway in Midnapore (W), a district in West Bengal.
Junior cricket in Bihar
In 1998, Dhoni was selected by Deval Sahay, a former Bihar Cricket Association Vice President and Ranchi District Cricket President, to play for the Central Coal Fields Limited (CCL) team. Till 1998 Dhoni, who was in 12th grade, had never played professional cricket. At CCL, he got an opportunity to bat higher up the order, where he performed exceptionally, which had helped CCL move to the A division. Deval Sahay, impressed by his performance, pushed for his selection in the Bihar team. Dhoni moved to the Ranchi team, the junior Bihar cricket team and eventually the senior Bihar Ranji Team within one year.
In the 1998–99 Cooch Behar Trophy, Dhoni played for the U-19 Bihar team and scored 176 runs in 5 matches (7 innings). However, Bihar finished fourth in the group of six and did not make it to the quarter-finals. Dhoni was not picked for the East Zone U-19 squad (CK Nayudu Trophy) or Rest of India squad (MA Chidambaram Trophy and Vinoo Mankad Trophy). In the 1999–2000 Cooch Behar Trophy, the Bihar U-19 cricket team made it to the finals, where Dhoni's 84 helped Bihar post a total of 357. Nevertheless, Bihar's efforts were thwarted by Punjab's 839 with Dhoni's future teammate Yuvraj Singh making 358. Dhoni's contribution in the tournament included 488 runs (9 matches, 12 innings), 5 fifties, 17 catches and 7 stumpings. Dhoni made it to the East Zone U-19 squad for the CK Nayudu trophy in the 1999–2000 season but scored only 97 runs in four matches, as East Zone lost all four matches and finished last in the tournament.
Bihar cricket team
Further information: 2001–02 Ranji Trophy
Dhoni made his Ranji Trophy debut for Bihar in the 1999–2000 season, as an eighteen-year-old. He made a half century in his debut match scoring 68* in the second innings against Assam cricket team. Dhoni finished the season with 283 runs in 5 matches. Dhoni scored his maiden first-class century while playing for Bihar against Bengal in the 2000/01 season. Apart from this century, his performance in the 2000/01 season did not include another score over fifty and in the 2001/02 season, he scored just five fifties in four Ranji matches.
Jharkhand cricket team
Dhoni's performance in the 2002–03 season included three half-centuries in the Ranji Trophy and a couple of half-centuries in the Deodhar Trophy, as he started gaining recognition for his lower-order contribution as well as hard-hitting batting style. In the 2003/04 season, Dhoni scored a century (128*) against Assam in the first match of the Ranji ODI tournament. Dhoni was part of the East Zone squad that won the Deodhar Trophy 2003–2004 season and contributed with 244 runs in 4 matches, including a century (114) against Central zone.
In the Duleep Trophy finals, Dhoni was picked over international cricketer Deep Dasgupta to represent East Zone. He scored a fighting half-century in the second innings in a losing cause. Dhoni's talent was discovered via the BCCI's small-town talent-spotting initiative TRDW. Dhoni was discovered by TRDO Prakash Poddar, captain of Bengal in the 1960s, when he saw Dhoni play for Jharkhand at a match in Jamshedpur in 2003, and sent a report to the National Cricket Academy.