'MS Dhoni did not win the World Cup...': AB de Villiers reiterates Gambhir's long-standing view
Gambhir has found a support from AB de Villiers, who shared the same view on Dhoni and India's 2011 World Cup win
Almost annually, on the anniversary of India's 2011 World Cup win, and most recently in almost each of his discussions with 2023 being an ODI World Cup year, former India cricketer Gautam Gambhir has reiterated the fact that MS Dhoni did not win India the World Cup and he urged ardent followers of the Men in Blue to move on from hero worship and hail the contributions of each of the members of that triumphant side for the historic feat rather than singling out a player. Gambhir has faced severe backlash from Dhoni fans across social media over the years, however, on Tuesday, for the first time, the ex-India opener has found a support from a legendary player himself, AB de Villiers, who shared the same view during a Q&A session with fans on YouTube.
2011 was a glorious year for Indian cricket as the Men in Blue ended their 28-year-long wait for a second World Cup title as the Dhoni-led side became the first ODI side ever to win the trophy on home soil. In front of a packed Wankhede crowd in Mumbai, India beat Sri Lanka to lift the coveted title where Gambhir played a crucial role with his knock of 97, agonisingly missing out on a record ton, before Dhoni took the hosts over the line with his unbeaten 91.
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With the captain, who earlier led a young Indian side to inaugural T20 World Cup win in 2007, hitting the winning run with a six high over long-on, the memory of that glorious strike remains etched in minds of all ardent followers of the sport and the clip of that very shot is shared each year as India celebrate the anniversary of their second World Cup win.
While Gambhir has repeatedly urged fans to celebrate all the players and other members of the side for that World Cup win, he has been severely criticised for his remarks, but on Tuesday, De Villiers called out those fans in reiterating the same remark. He explained that cricket is a team game and that a lot of individuals are involved in contributing towards a World Cup win which includes players, substitutes, selectors, coaching staff and many more. The South Africa batting legend hence urged fans not to credit only Dhoni for the 2011 win, but the entire Indian side.
"Cricket is a team game..A player alone doesn't lifts the World Cup. On Twitter I see people saying Dhoni alone won the World Cup…But that's not right..MS Dhoni did not win the world Cup , whole Team India won the World Cup. Ben Stokes did not lift the trophy in Lord's in 2019, it was team England. There is a lot that goes into winning a World Cup from coaching staff to selectors, the board members, the players, the subs, everyone adds a little bit of potion to the mixture," he said.
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