While promoting his autobiography, former India batsman VVS Laxman left many surprised when he said he rated his century at Sydney higher than the 281 at Kolkata. The stylish Hyderabadi batsman, in his book, also revealed a story about a time when he was taken by surprise by one of his younger teammates – this time from 2008 when India’s newest Test captain, MS Dhoni, drove the team bus
It was Laxman’s 100th Test and India was playing his favourite opposition, Australia, in Nagpur. The ace batsman was in for a surprise as skipper Dhoni took to the wheel of the team bus and drove them back to the hotel.
Co-incidentally, this was the same match when the legendary Anil Kumble had announced his retirement.
“One of my abiding memories is of MS (Dhoni) driving the team bus to the hotel in Nagpur, during my 100th Test. I couldn’t believe my eyes — the captain of the team driving us back from the ground! It was his first Test in charge after Anil’s (Kumble) retirement, and he didn’t seem to have a care in the world. But he was like that, playful and grounded. MS never lost the joy, the playfulness. I have never met anyone quite like him,” Laxman wrote in his autobiography ‘281 and Beyond.’
Laxman, in his book also speaks about the calm nature of Dhoni and goes back to the torrid tour of England in 2011 and says the skipper’s demeanour left everyone surprised.
“MS Dhoni’s calmness and equanimity are legendary. He had seen nothing but success until the tour of England in 2011. We had lost 4–0 in England and had already lost the first three Tests in Australia by the end of that year, and were heading for another whitewash. I was a mess, as were most of the guys, but MS was unbelievably composed. Not once did he lash out, and at no stage did he give the impression that he was frustrated or helpless,” Laxman wrote.