Kid bewildered as Dhoni gifts him India shirt


Johannesburg : A small South African boy was left gaping in awe as Indian captain Mohinder Singh Dhoni gifted him his shirt after India’s thrilling five-run victory over Pakistan to lift the inaugural Twenty20 World Championship at the Wanderers Stadium here Monday.

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After the Indian team completed its victory lap, ESPN-Star Sports presenter Alan Wilkins brought the boy on to the ground and walked towards Dhoni.

After a brief conversation between Dhoni and Wilkins, Dhoni pulled off his shirt and he and Wilkins then put it on the boy.

Dhoni then walked back to the team dugout bare-chested and Wilkins headed off, smiling and shaking his head.

The boy just stood there, gaping in wonder at the enormity of the gesture.


As the Indian team began their victory lap, Yuvraj Singh jumped into the stands to grab an Indian flag.

Immediately, others offered Indian flags and the team jogged around the ground with these.


The team went into a huddle immediately after the last Pakistani wicket fell and the match ended, breaking off and coming together again.

That’s not the way to do it; let’s do the victory lap first, Dhoni seemed to suggest and that’s exactly what the winning team did.


The maturity that Dhoni displayed in handling his bowlers when they came in for some severe mauling in the closing overs was pretty remarkable.

There was no screaming or shouting as captains are wont to do in such situations. Instead, each time a bowler was hit, Dhoni made it a point to walk across to him and offer him advice on controlling his nerves.

Harbhajan Singh, S. Sreesanth and Joginder Sharma were the successive beneficiaries of this in the final three overs of the match.


With the “Chak de India” spirit visible in abundance, thanks to the Shah Rukh Khan starrer of the same name, cricket fans were delighted to find the Bollywood star in their midst at the stadium.

“Come on India, you can do it,” he cupped his hands to yell, and the crowd roared in approval.


Fireworks erupted at the Wanderers as the presentation ceremony ended.

Before that, however, ICC chief Ray Mali hastily beat a mock retreat as the Indians showered champagne in abundance as Dhoni received the beautiful trophy, crafted in Jaipur.


The wheel, in fact, has come full circle in the two years since the International Cricket Council (ICC) proposed the Twenty20 event for the first time.

At that time, India stuck out with a flat no, saying it would have nothing to do with the even shorter version of the game.

It took a full six months for the Indian cricket board to say yes.