Some say he has a charmed life. Some sigh and call it destiny. While many would choose to credit or blame fate, depending on perspectives, for his success, there is no denying that fortune favours the brave is an apt saying when it comes to a certain Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
In his 30 years, which he completes on Thursday, Mahendra has touched upon and seized every accolade that could possibly ever come a cricketers way and though his team-mate in Sachin Tendulkar could rightfully boast of more laurels, this lad-from-Ranchi-turned-global-star-cricketer has every reason to be as proud.
The thing with comparisons are that they are mostly never fair and this is surely not one either. Instead, this is about a man who was given a bunch of hungry boys to lead and how he fed them with trophies and success galore. Cricket pundits, a few at least, regard the team that Dhoni inherited in 2007 was already fine-tuned to race to victory. The race itself was yet to begin.
Whether the ICC World T20 Trophy or the flagship tournament itself, the journey of the Indian team under Mahendra Singh Dhoni has been a whirlwind that has basked in more glory, arguably, than any other before it. Eleven make a team, one and only one will ever make a leader of it. Dhoni has been that driving force who has made gold off whatever he has touched.
While his biography may not be the rags-to-riches anecdotes exactly, for a young boy with long flowing brown hair - born in a middle class family to Pan Singh and Devaki Devi - to firmly etch his name in the cricketing hall of fame requires luck and hardwork. Dhoni has had both for him, along with a certain demeanour that reflects utmost confidence.
Dhoni's life chart once he made it to the national side has grown by leaps and bounds. So while he failed to make an impact in his ODI debut in 2004, the graph has since not dipped the slightest. What has changed though, apart from his most-watched hairstyle- over the years is his approach to the game. No cricket pundit is needed here to ascertain how as a batsman, MS has capped his raw and brutal aggression in a bid to play responsible knocks. Between his 183* off 145 against Sri Lanka at Jaipur in 2005 and 91 off 79 against Sri Lanka again in Mumbai 2011, the difference is not just of 6 years. The contrast lies in the stature.
So like Tendulkar, detailing much of his achievement would not be a first on his birthday, for the contemporary cricketing world has mostly been witness to this legend. Instead, on this day, here is wishing Mahi continuing success and a continuing blessed life.