‘Lambu, you left me midway in my last match’: Ishant Sharma recalls MS Dhoni’s words before Test retirement

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Ishant Sharma, MS Dhoni

Veteran Indian speedster Ishant Sharma is on the brink of adding a new feather to his glorious Test career. The lanky paceman is expected to play the pink-ball Test against England, which will be his 100th match in the longest format.

By doing so, Ishant will become only the second fast-bowler after the legendary Kapil Dev to play 100 Test matches for India. Overall, the right-armer will be the 11th Indian cricketer to appear in 100 games in the red-ball format.

Ahead of the milestone game, Ishant was involved in a conversation with off-spinner and his teammate Ravichandran Ashwin on his YouTube channel. During the chat, Ishant recalled an incident concerning former India captain MS Dhoni.

Ishant shared a story from the 2014-15 Test series in Australia, which was Dhoni’s last series in the oldest format. Ishant revealed how he came to know about Dhoni’s sudden and shocking decision of retirement. The right-arm pacer said he was taking injections to bowl in the MCG Test as he was having pain in his knee.

“I felt very bad (on MS Dhoni’s retirement). I had taken many injections for that Melbourne Test match because I was experiencing severe pain in my knee. I did not know that Mahi bhai was going to retire. In fact, nobody knew that he was going to retire. So, I was taking an injection every session,” Ishant told Ashwin.

Ishant said when Australia were on the verge of declaring their innings, he informed MSD that he couldn’t take any more injections, to which Dhoni responded that it’s completely fine. However, a few minutes later, Dhoni told Ishant he left him alone in his last Test match.

“When it was almost Tea on Day 4, and Australia were about to declare… I told Mahi bhai that I could not take injections any more. So, he told me, that’s okay. You don’t need to bowl now. Then something happened, and he told me, ‘lambu tune mujhe Test match mein chhod diya’ (you have deserted me in a Test match). I did not understand. Then he elaborated, ‘you left me midway in my last Test match,” added Ishant.

The Delhi-lad stated that he told Dhoni that he would have continued bowling in the match if he knew about his retirement.

“I was stunned. I told him if I knew, I would definitely have continued to play. So that was a really touching story. I didn’t know till the last day that he was retiring,” Ishant added further.

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