Veteran player and former Indian captain MS Dhoni was heavily trolled after India lost the series opener. Some of the critics even questioned his place in the ODI setup of the team.
But the legend proved everyone wrong as he guided the team to an excellent victory at Adelaide. India needed 299 runs to win, which is a huge target. Captain Virat Kohli scored his 39th ODI century to put India in a good position.
But he got out for 104, India still needed to avoid further hiccups. This is when Dhoni stepped up and with help from Dinesh Karthik took India over the line.
This innings will definitely be a confidence booster for Dhoni who has searching for form lately. Former Indian captain Sunil Gavaskar backed Dhoni and said he is very valuable behind the stumps.
Gavaskar said that it is very difficult to read a batsman’s mind. But with all the experience Dhoni can do that to some extent. Dhoni also shares his knowledge with the bowlers which helps them to stop the opposition. Gavaskar believes that the key to stop the opposition is to read their minds.
“He keeps telling the bowlers to bowl a particular delivery, what a batsman is planning to do. He has a sense of what a batsman is thinking. Obviously, nobody can read precisely what is going on in a batsman mind…the best way to help bowlers, the best way to help field placements for a captain or wicketkeeper is to put himself in that particular batsman’s place or mind. What the batsman is looking to do now…is he looking to get out of jail kind of shot? Is he looking to push the ball around for a single?” Sunil Gavaskar said as quoted by India Today.
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Dhoni is expert in field placements
Gavaskar also pointed out that during the death overs, India needs their best fielders in the deep. As a result captain Kohli has to field in deep areas. This makes it difficult for him to have regular conversations with the bowlers and constantly adjust the field.
This is where Dhoni steps in as he can analyse the full ground from behind the stumps. Moreover Kohli has full faith in Dhoni’s understanding of the game. He knows that the little adjustments which Dhoni make will definitely prove valuable.
“These are the kind of things where Dhoni helps the bowlers and of course with the field placing because Virat is so important in the deep in the final overs when he saves those two runs diving around, takes magnificent catches in the deep. So it’s not possible for Virat to maybe have a conversation with the bowlers or maybe to make adjustments to the square fielders. That is where Virat has complete faith and trust in Dhoni to make those little bit of adjustments for him,” Sunil Gavaskar added.
Gavaskar also said that the fans should be patient with Dhoni as he is very valuable to the team. “That value you cannot calculate at all. My prayer is to please leave the gentleman alone and he will continue to do well. He is also not getting younger. So the consistency you might have at a younger age will obviously not be there and you have to bear with that. Bear with that little inconsistency. But he’s still tremendous value to the team.” Gavaskar further added.