Virat or Dhoni who is best to bat at No.3 position for India
Virat or Dhoni who is best to bat at No.3 position for India

Former Team India cricketer Irfan Pathan has expressed his thoughts on how Virat Kohli has the better technique to bat at number 3 for Team India ahead of former Indian skipper MS Dhoni.

Pathan further claimed that Dhoni himself decided to demote himself from that position, in which he made his mark in international cricket for India after making his ODI debut in 2004.

“But MS had all the chance to bat at No. 3, he didn’t. Look, I really believe that if you compare Virat and Mahendra Singh Dhoni batting at No. 3, I still feel Virat has a better technique,” Pathan said at a TV show.

Previously, Gautam Gambhir had said that Dhoni could have smashed more records and scored more runs only if he had batted at No. 3.

However, ‘Mahi’ batted 16 innings at No. 3 in ODIs for the Men In Blue and smashed 993 runs at an average of 82.75. This is also the highest average among all the positions he has batted at in the ODI format.

“There’s nothing that I am taking away from Mahendra Singh Dhoni, obviously he has been an absolute legend of the game. Everyone has their own opinion. I will still take Virat any day,” Pathan further said.

MS Dhoni Runs by Batting position

POSITIONS INNINGS RUNS AVERAGE BEST 50/100 STRIKE RATE NOT OUTS
1 2 98 49 96 1/0 86.73 0
3 16 993 82.75 183* 6/2 99.7 4
4 30 1358 56.58 109* 12/1 92.82 6
5 83 3169 50.3 134 18/4 86.16 20
6 129 4164 47.32 139* 30/1 83.82 41
7 34 940 44.76 139* 6/2 93.72 13
8 3 51 17 20 0/0 62.2 0
TOTAL 297 10773 50.58 183* 73/10 87.56 84

 

Dhoni also played a majority of his cricket at No. 6, scoring 4164 runs at 47.31.

The 38-year-old has over-all played 350 ODIs, smashing 10,773 runs at 50.57 with 10 hundred and 73 half-centuries.

Since India’s semi-final exit from the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 against New Zealand in August last year, MSD hasn’t featured for the Men In Blue.

The 13th edition of the IPL was supposed to act as a stepping stone for Dhoni to showcase his worth and forge his way back into the Indian squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup.

Due to the coronavirus outbreak, BCCI decided to postpone the kick-off the IPL 2020 until further notice.

MS Dhoni Record at No 3

One crucial thing that’s always in the debate is MS Dhoni’s batting average at No.3, as the legendary wicket-keeper batsman was brilliant at No.3 during his early days of Cricket.

  • MS Dhoni average at No.3 in ODIs is 82.75 in 16 Innings.
  • Also, while playing at No.3, he remained unbeaten four times in the 15 innings.
  • He pushed himself to No.6 on the team’s need, after becoming the captain of the team.
  • The shift from Dhoni as a player to Dhoni as a captain is neatly depicted in this book. It is a must-read and easy-to-read book on Dhoni’s cricketing journey.
  • Most importantly, Dhoni moving down the order allowed Virat Kohli to bat at No.3, and what happened next is history.
  • MS Dhoni’s high score in ODI of 183* off 145 balls also came at No.3 during a successful chase against Sri Lanka.
  • It is the second-highest score in ODI while chasing.

Also read : “He Obviously Needs to Play. If He Does, He Should for India” : Irfan Pathan on Dhoni