Cricket is full of friendships and fights. While many cricketers became friends, others became bitter adversaries. However, there is also a third category, and that one belongs to Gautam Gambhir and MS Dhoni’s relationship.
To put it gently, Gautam Gambhir’s relationship with MS Dhoni is strange. For many years, the former Indian hitters were very important to cricket internationally. Even though they have been playing with one another for years, they occasionally seem to dislike one another. But still, sometimes people saw them rooting for each other.
However, their relationship is a bit different because one side is too aggressive publicly while the other doesn’t express it as much.
While Dhoni, who is known for his coolness, didn’t ever call out Gambhir publicly, Gautam Gambhir has repeatedly criticized MS Dhoni, whether it be for the former captain’s strategy of bringing the game to a new level or the wicketkeeper receiving the most of the credit for the 2011 World Cup victory.
As a result of this, Gambhir has become a favorite target of MSD fans for trolling on various social media platforms. However, most people wouldn’t recall that Dhoni had also openly criticized Gambhir in 2012 when India was losing to England at home.
When Dhoni criticized Gautam Gambhir for his gaming tactics
Despite grabbing the lead in the series opener, India lost the four-match Test series against England by 1-2. India had an uphill battle in the second Test after giving up an 86-run first-inning advantage.
The all-star batting lineup, which included MS Dhoni, Virat Kohli, Virender Sehwag, and Sachin Tendulkar, was bowled out for 142 runs. With a score of 65, Gambhir led all scorers for India, but Dhoni was displeased with his strategy as wickets fell at the other end.
The English bowlers went through the tailenders because Gambhir kept exposing them as bait, and India ultimately lost the game.
India in very poor condition in wankhede test match, will Gautam be Gambhir?
— Ashok Daraji (@AshokDaraji) November 25, 2012
According to CricketNext’s post-game report, Dhoni was furious with Gambhir’s selfish behavior in the second innings, when he just cared about getting his own runs without considering the team’s goals.
Speaking with CricketNext, MS Dhoni said,
“Of late Gambhir has gone into a shell and focusing on just to save his place in the team. His prolonged poor form has resulted in low self-esteem and he’s cut off from other issues pertaining to the team.”
Furthermore, Dhoni cited Ravichandran Ashwin as an example of how he managed the tail when he scored 91 in the Kolkata Test match despite not even being the designated batter. He said,
“Every run was crucial but Gambhir chose to be a mute spectator. The whole world saw that and everyone was taken aback. The effort to contribute to the team wasn’t there. Look how well R Ashwin batted with maturity during his unbeaten 91 in the Kolkata Test and he isn’t a specialist batsman. He shepherded the tailenders superbly and scored vital runs. If Ashwin can do, why couldn’t Gambhir?”
Indian No.8 batsmen remaining unbeaten in the 90s:
91* – R Ashwin v England, Kolkata, 2012
96* – W Sundar v England, Ahmedabad, 2021#INDvENG pic.twitter.com/7VFgFsTnKF
— Wisden India (@WisdenIndia) March 6, 2021
Incidentally, after the alleged bashing from Dhoni, Gautam Gambhir only played four more Tests for his country before his career came to an end. And for this too, he blames Dhoni. When it comes to criticizing Dhoni, Gambhir hardly ever holds back, whether it is on social media or in news conferences.
However, Gambhir should introspect if whatever Dhoni said is wrong or not.