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OTD: When MS Dhoni's Heartbreaking Run-Out Vs NZ Shattered India's World Cup Dream

MS Dhoni runout vs New Zealand ended India's World Cup dream (Twitter)MS Dhoni runout vs New Zealand ended India's World Cup dream (Twitter)

Five years ago today, one of the most heart-wrenching moments in Indian cricket history unfolded at the Old Trafford in Manchester. It was a day when a matter of inches dictated the fate of a nation’s World Cup dreams.

MS Dhoni, the stalwart of Indian cricket, dragged himself back to the pavillion, run out by Martin Guptill, sealing India's 18-run defeat to New Zealand in the 2019 World Cup semifinal. This tragic day marked the end of an era, leaving millions of fans in disbelief and sorrow.

MS Dhoni's run-out brought tears to millions of Indian fans

The match, initially set for July 9, 2019, spilled over to the reserved day due to rain, adding to the drama and tension. Under the gloomy Manchester sky, New Zealand's captain Kane Williamson won the toss and opted to bat.

Indian bowlers, spearheaded by Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah, were quick off the blocks, making early breakthroughs that hinted at a promising day for India.

However, Henry Nicholls and Williamson, with a gritty 68-run partnership, steadied the ship for the Kiwis. Williamson's composed 67 runs laid a foundation, taking New Zealand past the 100-run mark before rain played spoilsport.

Resuming the next day at 211/5, New Zealand's innings wrapped up at 239/8, thanks to India's relentless bowling. Taylor’s quick dismissal and Bhuvneshwar's twin strikes kept India's hopes alive. It seemed like a target within India’s reach considering their formidable batting line up.

India’s chase began disastrously, losing early wickets and stumbling to 92/6. Amidst the rubble, a source of hope emerged in the form of MS Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja.

Their remarkable 116-run partnership rekindled Indian dreams. Jadeja’s fearless 77 off 59 balls was a valiant effort, but the mountain was too steep to climb alone.

The climax came in the 49th over, with India needing a miracle. Dhoni, the man who had carried India to countless victories, found himself inches short of the crease, run out by a lightning-fast direct hit from Guptill.

Watch: MS Dhoni runout video vs New Zealand in World Cup 2019 semi-final

That one fateful moment, a matter of mere inches, shattered India’s aspirations and left Dhoni, and millions of fans, heartbroken.

As Dhoni walked back, it wasn’t just a walk back to the dugout; it was a walk into the sunset of his illustrious international career. 

He later revealed that it was at this precise moment he knew his time in international cricket was over. That run-out was the curtain fall on an extraordinary chapter in Indian cricket.

Today, as we look back, we remember not just the heartbreak but the valiant fight, the glimmer of hope in the darkest hour, and the spirit of a legend who fought till the very end.