Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here

Home > Features >

India need to improve in critical areas rather than changing MS Dhoni as captain

MS Dhoni-led Indian setup has come in for criticism for poor performances away from home © Getty Images
MS Dhoni-led Indian setup has come in for criticism for poor performances away from home © Getty Images

 

India began an extremely critical season with a forgettable outing in South Africa, followed by the disastrous tour of New Zealand. The tour of New Zealand, wherein the tourists failed to win even a single match, did no good to the Indian side keeping in mind the tough assignments that lie ahead in England and Australia. The Indian cricket board and team management will have to look at the right areas for improvement, rather than changing leadership role, in order to bring an end to the ignominy that resides with them when they go abroad. Devarchit Varma has more…

 

When India reached South Africa for a truncated tour in December last year, there began a very critical season for the Mahendra Singh Dhoni-led side. They had not won a single Test match overseas since that humiliating tour of England in 2011 and the side has been revamped with the new generation of players taking charge. But unfortunately, the results weren’t in favour and the team went down fighting hard. After losses in South Africa, the tour of New Zealand had the same story; the team went down fighting once again.

 

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and the Indian team management find themselves in trouble once again after these forgettable tours. While these tours presented Indians an opportunity to start afresh with new faces, the story remained same and the team certainly was found wanting time and again in certain areas. There are indeed some areas where the Indians need to look at, but change in captaincy at this juncture may not be the ideal move.

Dhoni’s critics would certainly launch an attack yet again, citing his unending poor record overseas but one also needs to consider the fact that handing over the charge to someone as young as Virat Kohli will not be the smartest of the moves right now. Martin Crowe, the former New Zealand cricketer is of the view that Dhoni must be released from the Test captaincy job and Kohli should take over. Kohli has been Dhoni’s deputy for quite a while and is touted to take over the leadership role. But the 24-year-old being India’s frontline batsman with the responsibility of scoring bulk of runs must be given more time to find his feet in international cricket. He should at least have the necessary experience of playing Tests in countries like England and Australia, where conditions are completely different, without the additional burden of captaincy and improving dismal overseas record that seems to be a humongous task.

 

It also must be considered that Dhoni, though being erroneous at times with his policies and decisions on the field, remains the best man to lead India across the formats. Bringing a change in the leadership role with just a year left for the ICC World Cup 2015 is not the need of the hour. Dhoni has been exceptional across all formats and he deserves to continue with his role, and like the many challenges that he has overcome in his nine-year long career, he must sign out — if he has to after the World Cup in 2015 as being said — with better shows in England and Australia.

 

Even if Kohli takes over the charge ahead of the England tour, the challenge will be too tough to someone as young as him in regards to leadership and on personal front. Instead, bringing him at the helm of leadership when India starts playing at home again will be the right way to induct Kohli in the role. Any player would be comfortable in starting his captaincy stint at home with favourable conditions and crowds behind him, rather than in alien conditions and against a hostile crowd. At the same time, if it has to be Kohli, he would be expected to score heavily as well. The major part of India’s overhaul in Test side began after the tour of Australia in 2011-12 with young players finding their feet in assignments at home, and Kohli too, must be awarded right opportunity to begin a new era. Changing leadership is one of the impending tasks in Indian cricket, which can be addressed at the right time.

 

Leadership role can be very demanding, and in the past it has been witnessed that players’ performance goes down a little bit with the additional responsibility coming in. Alastair Cook is the perfect example. A marvellous batsman couple of seasons back, he is not in the same form now and captaincy role, and the happenings in the England cricket has certainly put his batting on the backseat. India cannot afford to lose one of their frontline batsman, especially when the side is young and in rebuilding phase.

 

What the Indians can do in order to revive their fortunes at the moment is to look in the areas where they’ve been struggling — a formidable pace attack and letting go the opportunities that could help them make it big. Few sessions that cost India the series in South Africa (according to Dhoni), dropped catches in the second Test against New Zealand, Ishant Sharma’s see-saw form and an ordinary fast bowling attack has been one of the foremost reasons. The bowling though did surprisingly well in New Zealand, but it certainly hasn’t been up to the desired level. With the side struggling majorly due to an ordinary attack, the role of bowling coach Joe Dawes must be scrutinised.

 

With the young guns fielding has certainly improved, but the instances like Ishant’s hair coming in way of a simple return catch (of Brendon McCullum in  the second innings of the final Test, when he was batting on 36), are not only bizarre but also carry unwanted humiliation. The Indians certainly won’t like a repeat of any of this.

 

(Devarchit Varma is a reporter with CricketCountry. He can be followed on Twitter @Devarchit)

 

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 20, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Sharjah

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 21, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Abu Dhabi

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 22, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Sharjah

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 23, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Dubai

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 24, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Sharjah

More

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 19, 2014  at Dubai

Delhi Daredevils won by 4 wkts

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 19, 2014  at Dubai

Royal Challengers Bangalore won by 7 wkts

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 18, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

Rajasthan Royals won by 4 wkts

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 18, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

Kings XI Punjab won by 6 wkts

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 17, 2014  at Sharjah

Royal Challengers Bangalore won by 8 wkts

Photos

RCB vs MI, IPL 2014 Match 5 at Dubai

Videos

Video Highlights: Mumbai Indians vs Kolkata Knight Riders wickets

Indian cricketers and copycat marketing

Doug Insole: More than just an administrator

Gabriel Garcia Marquez: His words found their way even into the cricket world

Brendon Kuruppu scores the slowest double-hundred of all time

IPL 2014: Rajasthan Royals’ team composition vital for success

BCCI Chennai Super Kings Delhi Daredevils England India IPL IPL 7 IPL 2014 Kings XI Punjab Kolkata Knight Riders MS Dhoni Mumbai Indians Rohit Sharma Royal Challengers Bangalore Virat Kohli

IPL 2014: Robin Uthappa happy to play correct cricket

Five key areas England need to address to get back to winning ways

Marcus Trescothick willing to help Jonathan Trott

Shashank Manohar to attend BCCI Working Committee meeting on April 20

JP Duminy scripts sensational 4-wicket win for Delhi Daredevils over Kolkata Knight Riders in IPL 2014

Saqlain Mushtaq: Samuel Badree, Sunil Narine are skilful cricketers

Miran Bakhsh: The second-oldest Test debutant

Indian cricketers and copycat marketing

Doug Insole: More than just an administrator

Gabriel Garcia Marquez: His words found their way even into the cricket world

Fan of the Day

Fan Cricket

Fan Cricket

1 Posts | 0 Fans

Glenn Maxwell's 95, Kings XI Punjab vs Chennai Super Kings IPL 2014 Video Highlights

Know what it takes to save your skin during flights

Breeze, a fitness app that encourages users to walk

Tech giants look to skies to spread Internet

Militants free kidnapped engineer in Philippines

Lit festival constitutes award in memory of Khushwant Singh

Rajasthan Royals (RR) vs Kings XI Punjab (KXIP), Live Cricket Score, IPL 2014: Match 7 at Sharjah

Akshay Kumar sexier than Shahid Kapoor with beard, say fans!

Miran Bakhsh: The second-oldest Test debutant

Also on cricketcountry.com