The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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‘Saving the Test was almost like winning’
- There’s a big difference between 0-0 and being 0-1 down in a three-match series: Dhoni

Nottingham: Having played the lead on-field role in saving the first Test, Mahendra Singh Dhoni wanted to celebrate by tucking into the mouth-watering desserts in the Lord’s dressing room. Much to his dismay, they’d been removed when he went back for the tea break.

As it turned out, Dhoni and the others didn’t have to resume battle.

“There were no desserts then, but at night, a couple of us went to Leicester Square for ice-cream... After a day of tension, that’s how we chose to unwind... Given the position we were in, saving the Test was almost like winning,” Dhoni told The Telegraph.

Speaking on the afternoon-after (Tuesday), at the Crowne Plaza here, he added: “Yes, we felt relieved... While in the dressing room (tea onwards), I’d only been looking at the sky... Had play resumed, with just one wicket, saving the Test would’ve been difficult...”

Asked whether he felt any different on waking up, Dhoni replied: “Felt satisfied... I showed that I could anchor a match-saving innings as well... I survived in tough conditions... I wouldn’t say the unbeaten 76 is my finest, but definitely among the most important...”

Laughing, he continued: “It would be nice to get that score, and at Lord’s, in the last innings of one’s career!”

That, surely, is a long way off. For now, Dhoni is focusing on the next two Tests. “Had we lost, it would’ve become very tough... There’s a big difference between 0-0 and being 0-1 down in a three-match series.”

The Indians, meanwhile, arrived around 7.00 pm (IST).

The check-in at the hotel got delayed as vice-captain Sachin Tendulkar and former captain Sourav Ganguly (travelling with family) were allotted rather cramped standard rooms instead of superior ones.

Then, the highly superstitious Sreesanth wanted a room whose number would total 9 — 333, for example. The somewhat amused guest relations manager couldn’t oblige, but promised to “adjust” on Wednesday.

Quite a character this Sreesanth.

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