Former India manager Lalchand Rajput and former bowler Venkatesh Prasad defended Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s decision to declare in the first innings of the Nagpur Test. India declare against England, trailing by a small margin of four runs.
“Why are people after him (Dhoni). What’s wrong in declaring at that juncture? That was the last wicket, which could have continued batting some more time to get past England’s first innings score. But by declaring early, Indians gave themselves more time to get the Englishmen dismissed quickly in second innings. It’s definitely a good try,” Prasad was quoted as saying by MiD-DAY.
Rajput, who was the coach of the Indian team when they won the inaugural World Twenty20 Championship in 2007, said, “How much do you expect from tailenders? They could have played for another half-an-hour or so to add another 10-15 runs, which wouldn’t have made much of a difference. So this was a wise decision and a last-ditch attempt to save the series.”
A draw in the last Test and losing the series at home against England, has put Dhoni into dire situations. He has been criticised by all and sundry for his performance and captaincy.
However Prasad said, “It was aggressive captaincy by Dhoni. With almost two more days left (when India declared), he would obviously try to squeeze out a victory.”
“The wicket is also not helping the bowlers that much and so it would be difficult to dismiss a team inside three sessions,” Rajput concluded.
First Published: December 17, 2012, 6:48 pm