Squashing immediate plans of his retirement from International cricket , India’s ODI and Twenty20 skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni has said he will think about quitting the game only at the “right time”. The 34-year-old Dhoni was asked the same question about his retirement after India’s exit from ICC World Cup and he had then denied that he had such plan.
The clarion calls to have current India Test skipper Virat Kohli captain in all three formats have grown louder as his attacking instincts in the longer format has impressed many. Adding to the woes is Dhoni’s form with the bat in the last one year hasn’t exactly been great. There are rumours that he might take a call after the ICC World T20 in India. On the eve of team’s departure for Australia, Dhoni was asked about retirement.
“I am a person who lives in the present and the focus right now is the Australian tour leading up to the World T20 Championships. I will think about it at the right time,” he said. In absence of Suresh Raina, who has been dropped from the ODI side, Dhoni said either Gurkeerat Singh Mann or Manish Pandey will get to play in the ODI series.
“One of the youngsters – Gurkeerat or Manish Pandey – will get to play at either Nos 5, 6 or 7. We have four very good top order batsmen (Shikhar, Rohit, Kohli and Rahane). No. 6 or 7 is the most difficult spot for any batter.
“In the past we have tried many people but very few have succeeded in that position. That’s why Suresh Raina was good. Depending on how well they play, we will evaluate. I feel No 5 is good slot for a newcomer.” He also said the extra fielder outside the circle has made it difficult for the teams to go hammer and tongs in the last 10 overs and chase over 80 runs as was the case earlier.
“I feel bowlers have adapted better to rule changes. When they did not have the extra fielder they adopted new strategies which will help them now with one extra fielder available. Most bowlers are not getting hit in the last 10 overs as was the case earlier. That’s why you don’t have to leave too many runs to chase in the last 10 overs.”
He recalled India’s good show Down Under at last year’s World Cup, where the team lost to eventual champions Australia in the semis.
“The last time in Australia, the World Cup was a very good tournament for our team except the semi finals. It’s to spend some time there as Australia have always been a competitive side. It offers good opportunity for the newcomers to see how they make the transition from domestic cricket to international arena,” he said.