India was reduced for 71 for 5 against New Zealand in the ICC world cup 2019. With the help of Ravindra Jadeja, he nudged and nurdled his way to 43. India needed 31 runs of last 2 overs to cement their place in the world cup finals.
Dhoni smashed a six over the point at the start of 49th over to bring down the equation to 25 off 11 balls, but in an attempt to keep the strike, he turned for a desperate second run two balls later, and was beaten to the keeper's end by an inch. And that was the last time we saw Dhoni in blue Jersey, as post the World Cup he took a break from West Indies tour and made himself unavailable for 2 months to serve in the Indian army.
Dhoni was deployed in Kashmir Valley as part of the Victor Force and he was performing the duties of patrolling, guarding and post duty during his 2-week stint between July 31 and August 15 with Para Regiment of the Indian Army.
After Team India's clean sweep in West Indies, fans were eager to know about Dhoni's future. As India were scheduled to play 3 T20s against South Africa. But the night before the selection sources revealed that once again Dhoni has made himself unavailable.
On 12th September social media was abuzz with Dhoni's retirement rumours as Indian captain Virat Kohli posted a pic remembering a match between India and Australia during the world cup 2016 with a caption that readout, “A game I can never forget. Special night. This man, made me run like in a fitness test". However, Sakshi Singh Dhoni dismissed the news with her tweet that said "it's called rumours" and later that day MSK Prasad also confirmed that there is no update on Dhoni's retirement and the news is incorrect.
Recently a report in Mumbai Mirrors suggests that Dhoni will now be extending his break from cricket, which means he will skip the T20 series against Bangladesh. It this is speculated that Dhoni will likely make his international return against West Indies in December.
Selectors are looking beyond Dhoni as his future looks uncertain. They are putting their hopes in young players like Rishabh Pant, Sanju Samson and Ishan Kishan.
Former test legend Sunil Gavaskar believes that the time has come for MS Dhoni to retire from the international cricket.
"Nobody knows what is in MSD's mind. Only he can clarify what he thinks his future with Indian cricket is. But I think with him being 38 now, India should be looking ahead. Because by the time the next T20 World Cup comes around, he will be 39 years old. His value to the side is always going to be fantastic. Not just the runs he will score or the stumpings he will effect. But his overall presence on the field will be calming for the captain because the captain gets the benefit of his views. So that is a huge plus. But I do believe the time has come. Everybody has a shelf life and I do believe with the greatest of respect to Dhoni and I am a fan as millions of others; I just believe he should be going without being pushed out. He should be going on his own terms”. Gavaskar said in an interview with India Today.
Just before the series against South Africa, skipper Virat Kohli was asked about M.S Dhoni's future in international cricket to which Kohli replied that "experience is always going to matter whether you like it or not. I mean there are a numerous number of times people have given up on sportsmen and they have proved people wrong and he (Dhoni) has done that many times in his career as well. As long as he is available and continues to play, he is going to be very valuable,".