MS Dhoni, who was under fire after a poor outing against England, has found support from former India cricketer Sachin Tendulkar. The wicket-keeper batsman wasn't up to the mark as fans were expecting after his performance in IPL.
There were even rumors about Dhoni's retirement. But Ravi Shastri had snubbed all the speculations.
Recently, in an interview with Mumbai Mirror, Sachin spoke out on Dhoni's retirement and said the former India captain knows when to hang his boot being the best judge of his future. “My answer is very simple. I know people are talking about a lot of things. It is not about what XYZ think. I have read Mr. Gavaskar’s statement and seen Sourav’s remark that Dhoni needs to do more. But if you speak to MS himself, he would also say that it (the performance in England) has not been up to his expectations. And that’s the thing. Players try to perform to their expectations,” Tendulkar said.
The former India opener had experienced something similar in the last phase of his cricketing career. He wants everyone to leave it to Dhoni. “The player only has to take the call. A player of his caliber, who has been around for a long time, knows what is expected of him. And where he stands. So, I will leave the decision to him,” he added.
“He has played enough cricket and he understands his game better than anyone else. He understands his own mindset too. So, I think one should leave everything to him. Being a colleague of him, I know of him and I think he is the best person to decide on his career.”
The owner of 100 international hundreds also spoke about Dhoni's 2019 World Cup plans. He, however, refrained to comment whether the 37-year-old should continue playing till World Cup or not. “World Cup? Well, it is all up to what he (Dhoni) thinks. I don’t know what are the plans of the captain (Virat Kohli) and coach (Ravi Shastri). We are almost a year away for the World Cup, so there is a lot of time. If you have seen the recent three ODIs and Twenty20 International games, there were changes in the team that had nothing to do with the form. There could be a number of challenges for a player – some could be fitness challenges and some could be form challenges. I would just wait and watch,” Tendulkar said.
Apart from Dhoni, he also discussed the upcoming 5-Test series against England which is going to very vital for team India.
The Virat Kohli-led team has lost ODI series against England. “One is the weather. It has been a very hot summer in England. And the second is surface. If there is no lateral movement, it will be a challenge for the English bowlers to get our batting line-up out. Also, given the weather, the spinners will come into play for long hours. The spinners will have a role much more than we may have thought.”
Tendulkar also suggested that India should keep the option of playing two spinners open. He said, “There are reasons why the selectors may have included three spinners in the squad. The weather is the first factor. And second is what Kuldeep (Yadav) has been able to do. He could be our big weapon to harm them (England). If the pitches are dry, I see Kuldeep harming them badly. If there is not much fresh grass, India will be tempted to have two spinners in the XI.”
Leaving the previous records aside, he is sure Kohli will shine this time against England. “I don’t think past performance will have any impact on Virat. He has matured. The five-Test series will be a challenge for the fast bowlers. To run in every day and deliver exactly the way you have done in the first Test will not be easy. So, it would be challenging for the bowlers than the skipper,” Tendulkar opined.