Bengaluru, Dec 2: India's limited overs captain MS Dhoni had set a record of sorts last year (2014) when he made it to the ICC ODI Team of the Year for 7 consecutive years. But in the indication of change of times in Indian cricket and at the global stage, 'Captain Cool' has failed to make the cut in 2015.
On Wednesday (December 2), the International Cricket Council (ICC) announced the Test and ODI teams of the year 2015. Only 2 Indians were selected - R Ashwin as Test side's 12th man and Mohammed Shami in First XI of ODI team.
Indian fans were used to seeing more names, at least in the 50-over team. Last time, 34-year-old Dhoni was named the captain for 5th year in a row, a record. Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and Shami were also there but none in Test outfit.
In a huge disappointment for Dhoni's fans, he is missing this time. During the selection period (September 18th 2014 to September 13th 2015)), Dhoni played 23 matches and scored 705 runs with a highest score of 92 not out (against South Africa recently). He had been under pressure during the home series against South Africa as he lost both T20I (0-2) and ODI series (2-3).
The Chairman of the ICC Awards Selection Panel, Anil Kumble, said: "Team selection is one of the toughest jobs and when you have a large pool of outstanding players to select from in a 12-month period then it becomes even more difficult. It was a particularly busy year, with a series of stellar performances throughout the Test and ODI formats, not least in a hugely successful ICC Cricket World Cup 2015, which has greatly enhanced the popularity and profile of the game internationally.
"Testament to the quality of cricket played is the calibre of players to have missed out on selection. While selecting these squads, the selectors considered various combinations and took into account several factors in overall performances. Congratulations to all of the players on their selections."
Questions were raised over Dhoni's captaincy and many felt it was time for him to hand over the reins to Virat Kohli. Now, Dhoni is not involved in competitive cricket and is expected to return as India skipper when the team tours Australia next month for 5 ODIs and 3 T20Is.
Dhoni has already retired from Test cricket and had said he would take a call on his international future after ICC World Twenty20 2016 in India (March and April). One has to wait and see whether he will carry on after April 2016 and returns to the ICC ODI team next year.
For now, Dhoni's feat of being in ICC ODI team for 7 straight years needs high praise.