Dravid asks Dhoni to quit T20 captaincy but lead in Tests
PRESS TRUST OF INDIA
New Delhi, Jan 10: Former India skipper Rahul Dravid has thrown his weight behind the beleaguered Mahendra Singh Dhoni, saying that he is the “only man” capable of leading the Test team but should quit Twenty20 captaincy to avoid becoming “stale”.
“Not only is Dhoni the only man to lead India in Test cricket, he is still capable of doing the job well. What it will require from him is a change in the way he captains, a recognition that he can’t do everything all the time, and the willingness to ask for and accept help,” Dravid said.
“Dhoni has got to recognise that he can’t continue to captain and play all the time, because it is making him stale... To start with, Dhoni could easily give up the India T20 and Chennai Super Kings captaincies...He needs to take breaks between captaining and keeping and playing,” he wrote in a column.
“He should certainly play ODIs and T20s for India, because he is invaluable to the side. Giving up a couple of captaincy roles might give him more time in the main India job and the freshness to keep doing it. It would also give India an opportunity to perhaps give someone like (Virat) Kohli a chance to be T20 captain, break him into the job and see how he goes,” he said.
Dhoni’s captaincy was criticised after India’s recent home Test debacle against England followed by the ODI loss to arch-foes Pakistan.
Even though he is in decent form with the bat, several former players feel Dhoni has shown signs of fatigue as captain.
But Dravid believes India does not have anyone to replace the wicketkeeper-batsman, who led the country to the 2007 Twenty20 World title besides the 2011 ODI World Cup.
Dravid also said that Dhoni should change his approach slightly.
“He has had a good run, and will be recognised as India’s most successful captain, and he now has a chance to extend it. Other than his leadership qualities, there is the fact that there are no alternatives to Dhoni at this stage,” he pointed out.Dravid said opener Gautam Gambhir could have been a possible captaincy candidate but his lack of form in Tests has put a question mark on that.
“At one point we felt Gautam Gambhir could take over the job. In 2008-09, Gautam showed he could definitely play at the international level and in all formats. His captaincy of Kolkata Knight Riders in the last IPL was excellent.
“Yet what goes against him today is the fact that he has not scored too many Test runs in the last three years, and he averages under 32. Also, unlike Dhoni, Gautam does not have a second skill to back up his batting, even if that skill is being an excellent slip fielder,” explained the batting great, who accumulated over 24,000 in international cricket for India.
“Still, Gautam’s batsmanship and experience remain very important for the team, and giving him the captaincy at a time like this would be a burden on him. Before anything else, he has to get his Test batting back on track. If he does, he still has age on his side,” he said.
Lastupdate on : Wed, 9 Jan 2013 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Wed, 9 Jan 2013 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Thu, 10 Jan 2013 00:00:00 IST
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