Mike Hussey, who played under different captains for Australia and in the IPL, has revealed that MS Dhoni and Rohit Sharma, like Ricky Ponting remained calm under pressure. Hussey played under Dhoni during his time with CSK and then played one full edition under the Mumbai Indians captain.
Hussey started his international career for Australia in 2004 under the captaincy of Ricky Ponting. He then played for Chennai Super Kings under the leadership of skipper MS Dhoni between 2008 and 2013 in the Indian Premier League. He played his final edition of IPL for Mumbai Indians, led by Rohit Sharma and also played under the captaincy of Michael Clarke after Ponting had stepped down in 2011.
Comparing the leadership methods of these four captains, Hussey pointed out an important link between these distinct characters. The former Australia batsman explained that each of these captains had the same kind of hunger for victory. Speaking of his first captain, Hussey hailed two-time World Cup winning captain Ponting for taking the team to a glorious run.
“They are all very different characters. Ricky Ponting was so competitive and led from the front and backed his players 100%. He wanted to win so badly and dragged the whole team along with him,” Hussey said in a podcacst called Hostpot with Chetan Narula.
The former Australia cricketer scored an unbeaten 116 off 54 balls in CSK’s opening game in the inaugural IPL edition, marking a great start to his 7-year-long IPL career. Hussey, who played six IPL editions under Dhoni, revealed that the former India captain remained calm under pressure and showed faith in his team.
“MSD… he has a great intuition for the game but he is also very calm and cool, backs his players enormously and shows a lot of faith in them,” he added.
Moving on to Mumbai Indians captain Rohit Sharma, under whom Hussey played during the 2014 edition, the Aussie said that Rohit was similar to Dhoni in terms of being calm under pressure.
“Rohit was much the same. He is very calm under pressure and tactically very sound as well. All of them had this ability to take pressure off players and I think that was a good thing,” Hussey stated.
The 45-year-old further compared the captaincy abilities of the former Australia and India captains - Ponting and Dhoni. The two stark personalities, according to Hussey, were common in having a calm personality and were unswayed by their scores and results. Hussey suggested that two captains were successful due to this leadership skill of theirs, helping their respective teams under different circumstances.
“Whether the team is going really well or going poorly, they are just consistent and calm with their personalities. Ricky, for example, whether he scored a hundred or scored a duck, he was just the same person. MSD, whether won four games in a row or lost four games in a row, he is exactly the same person. I think that is a very good attribute to have from a leadership point of view and it rubs off on everyone else on the team,” Hussey added.
“If you have an emotional character as captain who is always going up and down, the team rides those waves with the captain, but if a captain is control and calm, and consistent with his personality, then that really helps the team.”