Gautam Gambhir’s advice to MS Dhoni: Be more proactive

After India’s eight-wicket loss to England in the final ODI of the three-match series against England, former Indian opener Gautam Gambhir came down hard on wicket-keeper batsman MS Dhoni’s ‘slow’ batting.

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After a solid start, India faltered at Headingley, Leeds on Tuesday losing three wickets for just 34 runs in the middle overs and with Dhoni struggling to get going – he scored 42 off 66 deliveries  - India muster 256, which was easily chased down by England.

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Analysing were India went wrong in the match, Gambhir pointed out that Dhoni’s inability to rotate the strike put undue pressure on other batsmen.

“The way MS played in the last innings (2nd ODI) and today as well, there has been a lot of dot balls,” said the Delhi batsman. “The way he is batting at the moment, he is putting pressure on the other batters as well.  He needs to be very much proactive”.

In the second ODI, which India lost by 86 runs, Dhoni had laboured his way to 37 from 59 deliveries in chase of 323 runs.

Gambhir opined that because of Dhoni’s struggles in the middle, England spinners – Adli Rashid and Moeen Ali – managed to registered impressive figures.

“The spell which you have seen of Rashid and Moeen in both the games, a lot has to be because of the way MS batted,” said Gambhir, adding “I have not seen MS play so many dot balls a couple of years back. There is something which he really needs to work on. Normally MS Dhoni is someone who takes his time. But then he is able to be aggressive in the last ten overs. But that is clearly missing in the last two games.”

In the second ODI, Rashid had returned 10-0-38-2, while Ali registered 10-0-42-1. In the third, the duo had figures of 10-0-49-3 and 10-0-47-0, respectively. Rashid walked away with the Man of the Match award in the final ODI.