London, Sep 18: Despite being out of competitive cricket for nearly 3 months, India's ODI captain MS Dhoni showed he has not lost his 'finishing abilities' as he smashed a boundary to win a charity game at The Oval last night (September 17).
Dhoni and several other former and current stars were in action at the Help for Heroes XI versus Rest of the Word XI charity Twenty20 game. The 34-year-old Dhoni, who had not played a major match since the conclusion of the ODI series against Bangladesh in June, was back at his best.
It was Dhoni who guided Help for Heroes XI to a 4-wicket victory with 3 balls to spare. He remained not out on 38. The situation was tailor-made for Dhoni as the game entered the last over with 4 runs needed. The right-hander, who retired from Test cricket last December, picked up the Man-of-the-match award.
There were some tense moments after 2 dot balls. With 4 required off the final 4 balls, Dhoni finished the match in style with a boundary in front of nearly 20,000 people. The team was chasing 159.
Former India opener Virender Sehwag, who too played with Dhoni, scored 30 runs. Andrew Strauss, the former England skipper, made 26 while leading the side.
The others who were part of the winning side were Herschelle Gibbs, Damien Martyn, Shahid Afridi, Graeme Swann, Darren Gough, Simon Jones and Matthew Hoggard.
Earlier, Rest of the World XI, captained by Brendon McCullum, scored 158/6 in 20 overs. The line-up included Brian Lara, Matthew Hayden, Daniel Vettori, Graeme Smith, Mahela Jayawardene and others. Jayawardene scored 48.
"Nearly £300,000 was raised for Help for Heroes as some of the game's biggest stars took to one of its most historic stages for a memorable evening's entertainment," The Oval's website said.
Surrey CCC Chief Executive Richard Gould said: "This was a fantastic end of season party, attended by a galaxy of cricketing stars and 20,000 happy cricket fans.
"To be able to have this good a time whilst raising nearly £300,000 for a wonderful cause is absolutely perfect and I would like to thank everyone who gave their time and effort to make it a truly memorable occasion."