Despite recurrent controversies, Mahendra Singh Dhoni continued to shatter records on India's tour of England. After a poor Test series, India registered their second consecutive win, defeating England by six wickets at Trent Bridge, to take a 2-0 lead in the five-match series. Dhoni equaled Mohammad Azharuddin's record of 90 ODI wins, the most by an Indian captain.
However, while Azhar took nine years between 1990 and 1999 and 174 matches to get to the milestone, Dhoni did it in only seven years and 161 matches. He is now braced to become the first Indian to lead the country in 100 ODI victories.
While Dhoni's captaincy on this tour has come under criticism, his batting has been rather consistent. After hitting four half-centuries in the Test matches, he slammed a fifty in the second ODI in Cardiff to help give India a massive impetus towards the slog end of the innings.
Meanwhile, Dhoni's record as captain against England in ODIs is outstanding, with 16 wins and five losses out of 24 (two tied and one no-result). He has a winning percentage of 73.91. The Trent Bridge win was also India's seventh successive in England, a successful run that started in the Champions Trophy last year.
Dhoni on Saturday, also registered another record as wicketkeeper. He now has the most international stumpings (131) and is now ahead of Kumar Sangakkra of Sri Lanka, who has 129 stumpings to his name. While Dhoni achieved his milestone in 381 matches, Sangakkara took 563 matches to get there.
These numbers should now give the beleaguered captain the kind of breathing space he deserves. Dhoni's leadership in Test cricket has often been below par but his records as an ODI skipper continue to be outstanding. However, his biggest challenge will be to build a side that can defend the World Cup in Australia next year.