Indore, Oct 14: It was one of those days when Indian captain MS Dhoni was charged up and showed his emotions. On Wednesday, at the Holkar Stadium here, he was a relieved man and had the perfect answer to his critics saying there people waiting with "open swords".
In the last few days, Dhoni was under pressure with both his both and captaincy under scrutiny. And what better way than answer with his bat and also with fine leadership. The same was on view as India defeated South Africa by 22 runs to level the 5-match series 1-1.
First, Dhoni used his left hand to flip the coin and won the toss. This was after losing 3 tosses. And when India was in trouble, the skipper played one of the most important innings of his career - an unbeaten 92 off 86. (Critics feel the heat from Dhoni)
With under-par 247/9 in 50 overs, India had an uphill task to defend this total. Dhoni used his bowlers very well and clinched a memorable victory as the Proteas were bowled out for 225.
Speaking after the victory, Dhoni was asked about his critics and he said, "Not an easy game that we play. Lot of people just wait with open swords, waiting for you to commit mistakes."
This was his straight reply to the critics who had questioned his ability to continue as India's limited overs captain. He lost the preceding Twenty20 International series to South Africa 0-2 and also lost the opening ODI by 5 runs.