MS Dhoni Rahul Dravid India
Rahul Dravid believes MS Dhoni will be a big inspiration for kids across IndiaReuters

The first question that sprang to mind when MS Dhoni announced his retirement from Test cricket was "Why now, when there is still a Test match in Australia to be played?" And while that remains a valid question, which Dhoni does owe everyone an answer to, Rahul Dravid, another former Test captain and living legend, tried to come out with a possible explanation of his own for the limited-overs captain's sudden decision.

"I guess it was unexpected that he would do it in the middle of the series," Dravid told ESPNCricinfo. "I expected him to review it at the end of the series, without India playing Test cricket for the next seven or eight months.

"Knowing MS, if the series was alive, I don't think he would have taken the decision in the middle of the series.

"But having seen that the series was already gone, maybe he felt that if he was going to go, then maybe this was the time to do it, and to give Virat Kohli a Test match in Australia to captain, Wriddhiman Saha another opportunity in a Test match, and to start the process of taking India's Test team forward."

India have already lost the Test series to Australia 2-0 after only managing a draw in Melbourne. With one Test match to play, a dead rubber for all intents and purposes, Dhoni probably felt he could help the India cricket team better by turning his focus on that World Cup title defence, which begins in a month and a half.

Even if Dhoni's captaincy record was iffy over the last few years, there is little doubt that India will miss the services of Indian Test cricket's most successful captain. And if Dravid says he enjoyed playing under the always understated Dhoni – something "The Wall" no doubt can relate to as well – then the man from Ranchi must have been a great leader of men.

"He was a captain I enjoyed playing under," Dravid added. "One of the things I liked about MS was, what you saw was what you got.

"Very uncomplicated, always led by example. One of the things I really liked about playing under MS was that he never asked you to do anything that he himself didn't do.

"The reality was he was having to transition a senior group of players and build a younger group who were coming through.

"In a sense he was not the most communicative of captains, but he tried to earn your respect by walking the talk. He never took a backward step, and led more by example than by rhetoric or by words. More by actions."

Dravid also lauded Dhoni for coming from a humble background from a relatively small town like Ranchi to become one of the most known faces in India.

"For someone to come from a small town like Ranchi, to go on and captain India and play 90 Test matches, to do it the way he has, I think he brought a lot of dignity to the job of captaincy" the batting legend said.

"He might not be everyone's cup of tea, but he was his own cup of tea and he led with a lot of success and that can never be taken away from him."

Dravid has no doubt Dhoni will be an "inspiration" for all the kids from similar backgrounds aspiring to become great.

"And he's been an inspiration. If there are kids in small towns today dreaming and aspiring for great things, not only in cricket but in various fields, then MS Dhoni has a lot to do with it."