India in New Zealand 2013-14 January 11, 2014

'Now we know we've got players who can do well anywhere' - Dhoni

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'Players have performed in all conditions' - Dhoni

MS Dhoni believes that India's young side has transitioned into a stable unit with the help of sustained exposure at home ahead of a number of overseas trips.

According to Dhoni, the first one, to South Africa, proved that the team had players who could perform in all conditions. As they depart for the second trip, to New Zealand, the India captain said that tackling bounce and generating it were the major challenges facing the batsmen and bowlers respectively.

"The good thing is that though there have been quite a few changes [to the team], before we went for the last tour we got enough time in India," Dhoni said at a press conference in Mumbai, ahead of the team's departure for New Zealand. "Quite a few of them played few Test matches in India and we did well and were confident of their ability. Quite a few people were speculating about how the batsmen will do or how the bowlers will do [in South Africa]. Now we know we have got a set of players who will do well irrespective of where we are playing and that is a big positive.

"As of now, both our [ODI and Test] squads look quite settled, which is a good thing because it's very important to back individuals. If you talk about the batsmen, not all of them have played a lot of Test matches outside the subcontinent. So they will take some time.

"But what we have seen is that almost all of them have played ODIs outside India and still they have performed really well, which gives you the confidence of saying that they have the ability to do well outside the subcontinent when it comes to dealing with pace and bounce. Yes, the red ball does slightly more and for slightly longer periods in Test matches and it's different, but if you have the talent to perform in one format, definitely you have the talent to perform in others too."

For India batsmen who are used to unpredictable and low carry at home, leaving balls on the bounce alone in New Zealand is likely to be a challenge. But Dhoni said that his batsmen had shown in South Africa that they could tackle that test quite well.

"We have a slightly bigger challenge in the sense that ... [even] if the fast bowlers bowl back of a length in India more often than not it is very difficult to leave on the bounce, but when you go outside you know you have the liberty of not only leaving on the line, but also if you judge the bounce and if the wicket has good bounce, you can leave on the bounce.

"This is something you learn over a period of time and I think the batsmen did well in South Africa, they handled good fast bowling and at the same time they were quite positive. There were quite a few things that happened in South Africa that gives us the confidence of saying that we have the talent of doing well anywhere in the world."

Dhoni also said there was healthy competition among his bowlers, with more and more recovering from injuries, and that the challenge for his attack was to squeeze more bite out of drier pitches.

"I think there's more competition when it comes to the bowling department. One year back some of our leading fast bowlers had injuries. Back then we didn't have too many options," he said. "But now with all of them becoming fit and being available for selection and doing well on the domestic circuit, they have enough competition amongst themselves, which is a healthy thing to have."

"There's one particular condition we have to improve on, which is on wickets that are on the drier side and just have a bit of bounce on offer and not too much of seam movement. The reason being, most of our bowlers aren't those who hit the surface. Most of them are those who swing the ball and bowl slightly up to the batsman. At times we encounter wickets that are on the drier side and you have to bang in the ball to get bounce and pace."

In the absence of a seam-bowling allrounder, Dhoni also called for India's specialist spinners to show more patience and build pressure in overseas Tests, pointing to Ravindra Jadeja's performance in the Durban Test as an example.

"One thing that the home team would like to do is to ensure that the wickets don't turn at all. The reason being that we don't have an allrounder. We don't play with five specialist bowlers. Over the years we have lost our part-timers who were as good as specialist bowlers.

"If the ball doesn't spin they [the opposition] can take runs off the spinner, rotate the strike and look to score over three runs an over, and that actually puts the pressure on the captain. You don't want them to score over three-and-a-half runs an over when the spinner is bowling. [Then] you're forced to bring back the fast bowlers and they end up exhausted after the first day workout.

"In that respect, Jaddu's performance was good. Also the spinners will have to accept that when they travel abroad and when they're bowling on the first-day wicket, their role is slightly different. They need to have a bit more patience and not give them runs so that you are also building pressure from one end. They get late turn from the third or fourth days and that's the time they need to go in for the kill.

"When they play more and more games outside India, they'll start accepting the fact that in their first 9-10 over spells in India they might get one-two or more wickets, [but] outside they need to be more patient in their first spell, especially if they are bowling on the first day of the Test match. It's a bit tough on them but till the time we find a seaming allrounder, they'll have to bear that."

Abhishek Purohit is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • himanshu.team on January 13, 2014, 4:53 GMT

    He talks Sense: Dhoni. Whatever he said makes perfect sense, Yes we do have side that is expected to take our cricket forward at least in 2014. There are not too many spots vacant in battig department, and the bowling too looks to be shaping up well. Few members who need to back the confidence of their skipper are: Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Ashwin, Ishant Sharma and Bhuvi. All of them have done well in India, but were found short in South Africa. Team management is still behind them and they need to prove themselves in New Zealand to cement their place in the side for abroad tours.

  • outforhatrick on January 13, 2014, 4:31 GMT

    I think india is still in re-building phase, historically india never was a strong bowling lineup, but still they have won series every where except for SA and AUS, all asian teams are same when it comes to SA and AUS. The Batting lineup of india is developing with each experience they get overseas, give them some time.. SA was the first away series w/o the quartret.. one bad session made the series 1-0. Dhoni need to start working on the bowlers with bowling coach and develop strategies for getting 20 wickets, rather than media sessions. By the way becoz of the new ODI rule.. everybody should start seeing 300+ scores more as a trend irrespective of bowling strengths

  • rajuramki on January 13, 2014, 3:57 GMT

    The present Indian team is far from settled and is not capable of good performances outside the subcontinent in any form of cricket . While the batsman are good enough and have the potential to perform well anywhere, the bowling unit is only of club standard . Dhoni can never expect to win tests outside India with the current crop of bowlers . BCCI has to produce fast and bouncy wickets in India , so that the Indian bowlers will learn to bowl on them . Centres at Nagpur, Mohali and Bangalore are places where the pitches can be developed to suit pace bowlers and you always have dust bowls like Chennai, Kolkatta, Delhi and Mumbai . Unless our bowlers and batsmen learn to perform on differant types of wickets , the team will ever be far from settled.

  • on January 24, 2014, 2:34 GMT

    we have got players who fail repeatedly and still we don't learn and encourage them by giving chances. Players like ishant, rohit, raina, jadeja and dhawan must be asked to play domestic cricket to discover their lost form.. Ishant, rogit and raina must clearly not be selected until they proves themselves honestly.

  • on January 17, 2014, 17:16 GMT

    india no1 ranked team still call them home lion lamb abroad what was it in champions trophy straight win 5 matches the opener match in cardiff dhawan made century then going to westindies winning it give us a break guys wining straight 6 series even mighty aussie didnt do it last year and dont forget they chased above 300 3 times

    form is temporary class is permanent . LOVE YOU TEAM INDIA

  • Greatest_Game on January 17, 2014, 0:35 GMT

    Much talk here about Kallis' last century.. He took 393 minutes to score 113, not a particularly long knock. For some perspective, the record is by Mudassar Nazar - his took 557 minutes.

    Perhaps the most notable, for a host of reasons, was by Sanjay Mandjekar. On 20 & 21 October, 1992 he took 529 minutes to score 104 in Zimbabwe's FIRST EVER test. Zimbabwe fielded John Traicos, who was born in Egypt, & grew up in SA, making his debut against Aus on Feb 5, 1970, playing just 3 tests before SA's sporting isolation.

    22 years and 222 days after his last test, the 45 year old Traicos played in Zimbabwe's first, dismissing such notables as Kapil Dev, Mohammed Azharuddin, & a youngster named Sachin, who was born AFTER Traicos' debut. The 45 year old bested the 20 year old, dismissing him for 0 in 3 balls, while taking 5 for 86 @ econ 1.76. That Econ is no surprise: Sanjay scored 34% of India's runs at SR 24.64. It was his 4th, & LAST century.

    Kallis' last was pretty nifty in comparison!

  • rajcl on January 16, 2014, 9:21 GMT

    @ Shri Vathsan ,,,,,

    Jacques Kallis! This man could have easily beaten Tendulkar's record of test centuries by prolonging his test carrier. Instead he chose to stay with odi's so that SA can win a world cup! ,,,,,,,,,,,( take out the word of easily in your sentence,, kallis is great cricketer no dought but sachin record is a not easy Sachins 45th centurie came in 161st test & kallis 45 centurie came in 166 test 5test aditional than sachins how can you say easily , both came as a bowling all rounder at that time & sachin stick with batsman job & avoding injuries so he did not bowled lot, so less wkts ,if he bowled like kallis in test he could have taken atleast 200 to 250 wkts,--- so dont compare kallis bowling figurs to sachins he did not bowl much thats it ,,,& we INDIANS rating sachin because he played with lot pressure on his own sholder than any one in world ,where kallis played with less pressure than sachin,& sachin is like 1 vs 11 for some years ( not some matches )

  • NaveensTime on January 16, 2014, 9:15 GMT

    The tour of SA is great learning experience for Indian Team, as several youngsters rose to the challenge and proved their mettle. The likes of Virat , Pujara and Shami have showed the character to succeed in alien conditions. There are still few players who tried but could not succeed should be given few more opportunities.

  • on January 16, 2014, 8:40 GMT

    Of course India play well at home. They play on roads and have good batters. When Indians denounce pace and bounce as being unnatural in terms of pitch conditions, they show what Indian fans have always demonstrated ignorantly... that they care about themselves and Indian cricket, not cricket itself. They think their 'normal' is cricket normal - it is not. NZ will offer proper cricket pitches. Try it sometime India and you will not win everything at home and then make excuses abroad because you find normal to be the opposite of what you are used to. Problem is, then you will win more abroad, but lose some at home that gets you in trouble with your manic fans. So, you have made your bed... time to sleep in it. BMac, Ryder and co. will tuck you in. Sweet dreams.

  • on January 16, 2014, 7:23 GMT

    Harmony111..." It shows that either someone was selfish or poorly skilled". My goodness! What are you talking? You come to say a player of Kallis calibre is poorly skilled? Then what exactly is skill? Jeez! 200 catches,292 wickets,13000 runs doesnt come without skill.

    Selfish huh? Jacques Kallis! This man could have easily beaten Tendulkar's record of test centuries by prolonging his test carrier. Instead he chose to stay with odi's so that SA can win a world cup!

    Just because he has scored at lesser strike rate against a mediocre bowler(by your own admission),it does not mean he is less skillful or selfish.

  • himanshu.team on January 13, 2014, 4:53 GMT

    He talks Sense: Dhoni. Whatever he said makes perfect sense, Yes we do have side that is expected to take our cricket forward at least in 2014. There are not too many spots vacant in battig department, and the bowling too looks to be shaping up well. Few members who need to back the confidence of their skipper are: Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Ashwin, Ishant Sharma and Bhuvi. All of them have done well in India, but were found short in South Africa. Team management is still behind them and they need to prove themselves in New Zealand to cement their place in the side for abroad tours.

  • outforhatrick on January 13, 2014, 4:31 GMT

    I think india is still in re-building phase, historically india never was a strong bowling lineup, but still they have won series every where except for SA and AUS, all asian teams are same when it comes to SA and AUS. The Batting lineup of india is developing with each experience they get overseas, give them some time.. SA was the first away series w/o the quartret.. one bad session made the series 1-0. Dhoni need to start working on the bowlers with bowling coach and develop strategies for getting 20 wickets, rather than media sessions. By the way becoz of the new ODI rule.. everybody should start seeing 300+ scores more as a trend irrespective of bowling strengths

  • rajuramki on January 13, 2014, 3:57 GMT

    The present Indian team is far from settled and is not capable of good performances outside the subcontinent in any form of cricket . While the batsman are good enough and have the potential to perform well anywhere, the bowling unit is only of club standard . Dhoni can never expect to win tests outside India with the current crop of bowlers . BCCI has to produce fast and bouncy wickets in India , so that the Indian bowlers will learn to bowl on them . Centres at Nagpur, Mohali and Bangalore are places where the pitches can be developed to suit pace bowlers and you always have dust bowls like Chennai, Kolkatta, Delhi and Mumbai . Unless our bowlers and batsmen learn to perform on differant types of wickets , the team will ever be far from settled.

  • on January 24, 2014, 2:34 GMT

    we have got players who fail repeatedly and still we don't learn and encourage them by giving chances. Players like ishant, rohit, raina, jadeja and dhawan must be asked to play domestic cricket to discover their lost form.. Ishant, rogit and raina must clearly not be selected until they proves themselves honestly.

  • on January 17, 2014, 17:16 GMT

    india no1 ranked team still call them home lion lamb abroad what was it in champions trophy straight win 5 matches the opener match in cardiff dhawan made century then going to westindies winning it give us a break guys wining straight 6 series even mighty aussie didnt do it last year and dont forget they chased above 300 3 times

    form is temporary class is permanent . LOVE YOU TEAM INDIA

  • Greatest_Game on January 17, 2014, 0:35 GMT

    Much talk here about Kallis' last century.. He took 393 minutes to score 113, not a particularly long knock. For some perspective, the record is by Mudassar Nazar - his took 557 minutes.

    Perhaps the most notable, for a host of reasons, was by Sanjay Mandjekar. On 20 & 21 October, 1992 he took 529 minutes to score 104 in Zimbabwe's FIRST EVER test. Zimbabwe fielded John Traicos, who was born in Egypt, & grew up in SA, making his debut against Aus on Feb 5, 1970, playing just 3 tests before SA's sporting isolation.

    22 years and 222 days after his last test, the 45 year old Traicos played in Zimbabwe's first, dismissing such notables as Kapil Dev, Mohammed Azharuddin, & a youngster named Sachin, who was born AFTER Traicos' debut. The 45 year old bested the 20 year old, dismissing him for 0 in 3 balls, while taking 5 for 86 @ econ 1.76. That Econ is no surprise: Sanjay scored 34% of India's runs at SR 24.64. It was his 4th, & LAST century.

    Kallis' last was pretty nifty in comparison!

  • rajcl on January 16, 2014, 9:21 GMT

    @ Shri Vathsan ,,,,,

    Jacques Kallis! This man could have easily beaten Tendulkar's record of test centuries by prolonging his test carrier. Instead he chose to stay with odi's so that SA can win a world cup! ,,,,,,,,,,,( take out the word of easily in your sentence,, kallis is great cricketer no dought but sachin record is a not easy Sachins 45th centurie came in 161st test & kallis 45 centurie came in 166 test 5test aditional than sachins how can you say easily , both came as a bowling all rounder at that time & sachin stick with batsman job & avoding injuries so he did not bowled lot, so less wkts ,if he bowled like kallis in test he could have taken atleast 200 to 250 wkts,--- so dont compare kallis bowling figurs to sachins he did not bowl much thats it ,,,& we INDIANS rating sachin because he played with lot pressure on his own sholder than any one in world ,where kallis played with less pressure than sachin,& sachin is like 1 vs 11 for some years ( not some matches )

  • NaveensTime on January 16, 2014, 9:15 GMT

    The tour of SA is great learning experience for Indian Team, as several youngsters rose to the challenge and proved their mettle. The likes of Virat , Pujara and Shami have showed the character to succeed in alien conditions. There are still few players who tried but could not succeed should be given few more opportunities.

  • on January 16, 2014, 8:40 GMT

    Of course India play well at home. They play on roads and have good batters. When Indians denounce pace and bounce as being unnatural in terms of pitch conditions, they show what Indian fans have always demonstrated ignorantly... that they care about themselves and Indian cricket, not cricket itself. They think their 'normal' is cricket normal - it is not. NZ will offer proper cricket pitches. Try it sometime India and you will not win everything at home and then make excuses abroad because you find normal to be the opposite of what you are used to. Problem is, then you will win more abroad, but lose some at home that gets you in trouble with your manic fans. So, you have made your bed... time to sleep in it. BMac, Ryder and co. will tuck you in. Sweet dreams.

  • on January 16, 2014, 7:23 GMT

    Harmony111..." It shows that either someone was selfish or poorly skilled". My goodness! What are you talking? You come to say a player of Kallis calibre is poorly skilled? Then what exactly is skill? Jeez! 200 catches,292 wickets,13000 runs doesnt come without skill.

    Selfish huh? Jacques Kallis! This man could have easily beaten Tendulkar's record of test centuries by prolonging his test carrier. Instead he chose to stay with odi's so that SA can win a world cup!

    Just because he has scored at lesser strike rate against a mediocre bowler(by your own admission),it does not mean he is less skillful or selfish.

  • israrak on January 16, 2014, 7:15 GMT

    to all Indian fans who are saying that India has been whitewashed by Aus only once are forgetting that they were also whitewashed by Aus in 200 3-0 ... And in 1992 series also they were whitewashed by Aus 4-0 ...

  • Yuosufahmed on January 16, 2014, 2:23 GMT

    @pull_shot: Vilander is absolutely correct. Considering how they bowled against Pak, SL has better quicks than Ind. It was nice to see how they were bowling. I haven't seen such bowling performance from all 3 quicks in An Asian team after Wasim, Waqar, Akthar. Such a great line and length. Good face. Swing in both ways. What you say on hitting by Kohli and Dhoni may be correct because that can happen in anybodys initial matches. They are still young and have played less than 10 test matches.

  • Harmony111 on January 15, 2014, 20:15 GMT

    @Shri Vathsan:

    One more thing. If you are really keen to talk about what is valid reasoning and what is not then see this ...

    You are yourself arguing that India are not as good a team as SA. You are also arguing that Kallis is doubly talented a player. Agree?

    Then how are you arguing that JUST LIKE INDIA, Kallis too is allowed the same number of failures? If he is twice as good, he should fail half as often.

    Then we see that India were playing away, with little match practice, facing Steyn, Morkel & Philander while Kallis was playing on familiar wickets, on wickets that were much more favorable for batting, was facing a joke of a bowler like Ishant, a 35 yr old bowler & a 2-3 test old rookie then probably Kallis should never ever fail. His first ball duck can be excused as it can happen to anyone but his 36 SR 100 is one of the most preposterous knocks ever played. It shows that either someone was selfish or poorly skilled.

  • Harmony111 on January 15, 2014, 20:07 GMT

    @Shri Vathsan:

    What are you talking about? There is little or no sense in your comments. Let's see this.

    Did I ever say that SA are not the better side largely? Then why are you talking about SA having better bowling? That was never in doubt. Neither was Ind's bowling ever rated highly by me or others here. Twice you have made the same point that no one else is debating.

    Suppose A=>B. Would you say that A not happening is not a valid reason for B not happening? Acclimatization is very useful in giving good performances. This is almost an axiom. Irrespective of the reasons, fact is that Acclimatization did not happen for this tour, so this A=>B was broken. Thus it is a perfectly valid reason.

    The tour wasn't cut short for SRT's farewell series. SRT's farewell series was hastily organized when BCCI found it had some time cos the SA tour was truncated. Do you not read well?

    Why shouldn't SRT have been given a bye at home?

    Ind failed away vs Steyn, Kallis was at home vs Sharma, lol.

  • on January 15, 2014, 15:58 GMT

    Harmony111....Thats the point. India's bowling is a weak link. But SA does not have any such weak link on the whole on batting and bowling. So they got to be a better unit.

    And how can "getting acclimatized" can be a reason when a series was organised cut shorting the all important SA series specially for Sachin Tendulkar so that he can retire on a high in an India?...of course you would not have time to reach SA early and acclimatise when you are busy sending off a player by organising a separate tour! So your reason is not a valid one.

    As far as your Kallis criticism,when India is allowed to lose a couple of matches, Kallis,the combo of zak and dravid,is also allowed to fail a couple of times! Cricinfo plz plz publish....

  • pull_shot on January 15, 2014, 15:29 GMT

    @Vilander : SL is the greatest team they are 100 times better than India ; what can we say sl lost almost all matches they played with India in last 5 years still u guys say these, for overseas record just first let alone Srilanka play a atleast 4 test match series outside subcontinent which ur players don't like

  • Harmony111 on January 15, 2014, 8:35 GMT

    @Greatest_Game:

    As usual, you have vanished after being solidly rebutted. You can use stats only so much to prove hollow points you see.

    My final question to you is about Kallis, the great SA batsman.

    You have said that the wickets for the recent SA-Ind test series were SC like, thus hinting that they were not tough ones for Indian batsmen and this explained why SA bowlers looked toothless on some occasions. Very well.

    In the 1st test, Kallis got a FIRST BALL DUCK against Ishant Sharma, of all bowlers in the world.

    In the 2nd Test, Kallis scored a 100 at the phenomenal SR of 36 !!!

    On wickets where even SA bowlers were often easily dealt by the Ind FTBs, facing the utterly rubbish Indian bowlers, Kallis was either getting first ball ducks or 100s at SR of 36 ???

    What does this tell us about the batting ability of Kallis?

    It is good he has retired cos anyone who gets out first ball to Ishant Sharma ought not to be playing anymore. Boycott's mum would've hit Ishant for 6s & 8s.

  • TheWayCrciketShouldBePlayed on January 15, 2014, 5:39 GMT

    Hi all In India there is change of broadcaster from Neo to Sony. May be due to this, we can't watch remainder of Kiwis Vs Windies series which is absolutely rubbish. Very sad day for cricket followers in India who can't watch an exciting series of limited overs internationals. Hope that India gets a serious drubbing in Kiwiland and become an eye opener to braodcasters not to play with sentiment of Cricket lovers in India Its becoming too compliacted with the addition of Sports channels every year. Along with this digitisation is not helping course, where you have to shell out more and more money for each channel. These sports channels which claim themseleves as 24x7 Sports channels, instead of showing Sports content always, they show all kind of rubbish whenver they dont have Live Events. If this continues, sports/cricket lovers will run away from these Sports channels and look for alternatives on TV! Jai Ho TRUE Cricket fans from India!

  • Yuosufahmed on January 15, 2014, 2:59 GMT

    @ JustMyView: Vilander is absolutely correct. Considering how they bowled against Pak, SL has better quicks than Ind. It was nice to see how they were bowling. I haven't seen such bowling performance from all 3 quicks in An Asian team after Wasim, Waqar, Akthar. Such a great line and length. Good face. Swing in both ways. What you say on hitting by Kohli and Dhoni may be correct because that can happen in anybodys initial matches. They are still young and have played less than 10 test matches.

  • Yuosufahmed on January 15, 2014, 2:16 GMT

    @ JustMyView: Vilander is absolutely correct. Considering how they bowled against Pak, SL has better quicks than Ind. It was nice to see how they were bowling. I haven't seen such bowling performance from all 3 quicks in An Asian team after Wasim, Waqar, Akthar. Such a great line and length. Good face. Swing in both ways. What you say on hitting by Kohli and Dhoni may be correct because that can happen in anybodys initial matches. They are still young and have played less than 10 test matches.

  • SnowSnake on January 14, 2014, 23:55 GMT

    @Greatest_Game: SA has not dominated India in India. SA has dominated India in SA, but in last two series it is very weak domination against India in tests. India has a better record than SA in International tournaments and you have to acknowledge that. SA is OK team heavily dependent on Steyn just like India was dependent on Tendulkar. If I were to bet between SA and India in future then it will always be India although both teams are somewhat similar to me. With Kallis gone, SA is going to lose the very next test series.

  • on January 14, 2014, 23:38 GMT

    @nilb : Green track heroes will have their worst nightmare at home

  • on January 14, 2014, 19:19 GMT

    @aussiethegreat plz wjy dint u look down on ur own team which has already lost 7-0 n still home track bullies!!!

  • on January 14, 2014, 18:39 GMT

    @Greatest_Game- SA too hasn't won a single test series in India.. Take that..

  • on January 14, 2014, 17:36 GMT

    I am still wondering why we are still pushing more and more to Kohli & Pujara only. Its very unfortunate that we are not pushing Rohit, Shikhar & Vijay thatmuch. Why people always preffer Rohit to critisise ? What wrong he did ? he was among four batsmen who scored 1000 plus in ODIs in 2013. Infact Rohit is the player who played less number of innings than anyother. In his 4 tests he scored 2 centuries. SA tour was his first tour. Why everybody critising him ? Even Pujara had very bad time in first outing at SA. Kohli too had as much as first 4 tests without much score. Then why we want Rohit to score immediately ? In his 100 plus ODIs he only played 30 ODIs as opener. Most of the time he got chance to bat at no 5/6 at which no batsman can show his skill as he has to go for runs. Still Rohit has 20 half centuries and 4 centuries on his name at 36 plus agreegate average. Alongwith Pujara & Kohli, Rohit is future of Indian cricket. We must back everybody. All The Best India

  • bhushanB on January 14, 2014, 17:28 GMT

    Official broadcaster for this series in USA...Plzzz

  • Harmony111 on January 14, 2014, 17:25 GMT

    @Shri Vathsan:

    It is upon India to prove they can win anywhere and they proved they can win anywhere when they won the ICC-CT2013 held in England and immediately after that they won a tri-series in far far WI. What else do you want? Are you saying that India must win every single times? That is a really high standard of proof that you seek. By that logic Sampras must be a very poor tennis player cos he never won the French Open.

    India are allowed to lose a few matches here & there, esp when they play so much and keep flying in and out thus getting little or no time to acclimatize.

    As for accepting that India got a poor bowling attack, who doesn't say so? The staunchest of Ind fans won't ever claim that Ind got a strong bowling line up. In fact we win cos we got strong batting, our bowling tends to be barely sufficient most of the times.

  • on January 14, 2014, 17:17 GMT

    I think that Dhoni is simply talking about his team's batting line up and its true that there show in the tests was certainly proof enough that they can adapt to overseas conditions except for perhaps Dhawan and Rohit. People are taking it the wrong way, he isn't talking about the teams bowling which is weak even India where the only reason they take 20 wickets is because of the spinners.

  • nilb on January 14, 2014, 16:56 GMT

    Flat track heroes are going to get white washed in NZ pitches.

  • Harmony111 on January 14, 2014, 16:54 GMT

    @Greatest_Game:

    I am 101% sure that you have not understood that man-dog-chess joke I referred to in my prev comment. So here it is, Cricinfo Mods, pls bear with me here & publish this one, this is entirely relevant...

    A man was playing chess with his dog when his friend walks in and says wow your dog plays chess !!! He must be very smart. The man yells, "He is not smart, he is losing 3-4 to me."

    Got the drift my dear GG???

    Given that India's bowling has been very weak traditionally AND SA's bowling has been very strong traditionally, it is no surprise that SA have got more 300+ totals vs India esp cos Ind wickets are so helpful for batting. But it is indeed a huge surprise that SA, with their way superior bowling attack, have given away almost as many 300+ totals to India as India have given away vs SA.

    More shocking is that Ind scored 400+ runs & SRT got 200* vs Steyn & co while SA failed to do that even on Indian flat tracks facing trash Ind bowling.

    You got more stats bro?

  • on January 14, 2014, 16:35 GMT

    Harmony111....It is India whom you say are world champions and no.1 in odi. So the ball is in India's court to prove that they can it win it anywhere. SA are no.1 in test cricket and they have proved it that they can win it anywhere by drawing a series in UAE against Pakistan,which is not an easy thing to do. Maybe its time to accept that India has a poor bowling department that their batsmen can no longer win matches one dimensionally (by batting alone) that too in seaming tracks. cricinfo plz publish...!

  • Harmony111 on January 14, 2014, 16:22 GMT

    @Greatest_Game:

    Talking about contexts, do you think it is apt to put a tri-series played in Sharjah or elsewhere at the same level as the WC???

    I did not retreat anywhere nor did I create any context whimsically. If you fail to understand something said by me, deliberately put a new context trying to replace my context and when you are told about the original context then the only way you can save face is by saying that I changed the context when it was you who did that.

    I think you should be told that WC is not one Tournament. WC is THE Tournament. Marcelo Rios was World #1 Tennis player once but today most ppl would say Marcelo Rios Who? Why? Cos he never won a GS.

    And did anyone ever said that Ind have a superior record over SA? You have wasted so much time trying to prove a moot point.

    Any reply for that Man-Dog-Chess point?

    You saying hats off to me after noticing I had said hats off to you, very original that !!!

  • JustMyView on January 14, 2014, 16:21 GMT

    @Vilander , SL is the greatest team they are 100 times better than India. What is this dude ? SL team may be 100 times better than India during their break and lunch time. oh I guess you said it because of SL is loosing all the time when we play against India.didn't you see what Kholi has done to Malinga and Dhoni to Eranga.If Pak says that they have a good bowler than India we will accept but not with SL.

  • Vilander on January 14, 2014, 14:24 GMT

    India lacks pacers, look at SL it has great pacers already much better than anyone ever to have played for India..Janith Pasindu is right, SL is the greatest team they are 100 times better than India.

  • rajcl on January 14, 2014, 10:57 GMT

    where ever go the topic about india that means we r bulding team strong day by day cheer on indiaaaa

  • rajcl on January 14, 2014, 10:47 GMT

    @Greatest_Game: plz explain me when indian batting succeed outside india ,the pitch becomes flat, when we fail it becomes seamy track how silly is this, go & check the match again 1st & 2nd test of our batting they are leaving out side of balls & wait for their scoring oportunities & succeeded ofcorse we r not best in tests but we good beat any team in world. ( sa is a bouncy pitch but when batsmen settled its good for bat ),,,,,,in odis we r better than sa but not best because of our bowling i can accept & u have accept india is not easyest to beat thats what we proved in the past test serious, 2 matches came for last day how many times would see that in sa,,,,,,cric info plzz publish

  • Iceman29 on January 14, 2014, 10:14 GMT

    @Greatest_Game: It will be better if you look at your own team's progress...Aus just won a series at home and you started to comment about other teams...Ind team is in rebuilding phase and it will take its time...You better worry abt current Aus team's success in subcontinent and most of all Aus tour of SA...We will take care about our team's progress and failures...we dont need your views or thoughts abt our team...

  • yoohoo on January 14, 2014, 8:45 GMT

    @Greatest_Game - If the pitches were so flat in Johanesburg, can you please explain how SA lost 5 wickets in 15 runs to Indian Pacers?? Really pathetic south african batting line up this must be to lose 5 wickets in 15 runs to the worst bowling attack on dead tracks!! BTW this is not my opinion, this is your opinion based on your comments below!! hahaha. ..

  • BustIPL on January 14, 2014, 8:40 GMT

    Dhoni's strong desire to see post fab 4 era has come strong and now he is happy to see the team without dead wood. This new green on the tree is certainly becoming stronger and stronger day by day.

  • Greatest_Game on January 14, 2014, 8:30 GMT

    @ Harmony111. First of all, hats off to you. You create & recreate contexts at whim, never sticking to a subject when rebutted. After looking at the bilateral & tournament ODI records of India/SA, you retreat into the last, tiny little crack you can, & whittle everything down to "SA has not won the World Cup." The rest of the statistical record becomes irrelevant. Only the WC counts!

    The answer is simple: because SA has never put together the sustained performance to win a world cup. Why has India never won a series in SA? Because India has never put together the sustained performance to win a series in SA. HOWEVER, is India's cricket record whittled down to that single question? Of course not. India's SA record only a small part of a large picture. As is SA's WC record.

    You devolve to the WC because it is 1 Indian success SA has not had. But, the BIG PICTURE is that SA dominates India. The stats prove it. Irrevocably.

    The WC is one tournament. It is not all of cricket. Learn that!

  • on January 14, 2014, 7:55 GMT

    Home track bullies will again humiliated by the Kiwis this time. India only good in doctored pitches lol

  • bhushanB on January 14, 2014, 7:22 GMT

    Guys just came to realize that Ind-NZ series is not going to be broadcast on willow.tv HD in USA

    Does any one know who the official broadcaster in USA is and how to get live streaming possibly in HD...

    Do not want to miss the action....

  • Harmony111 on January 14, 2014, 7:16 GMT

    @Greatest_Game:

    First of all, hats off to you. I made a comment in some context, you misunderstood (deliberately ??) it, then I explained the context to you yet you again make comments that are totally out of sync.

    I asked you that I chew and smoke stats on a daily basis yet you still keep bringing in new stats to somehow prove whatever you want to prove.

    Very well, let me ask you a few questions using these same stats.

    If SA are so good at scoring 300+ totals or in tournaments, why haven't SA won a single WC title? Forget WC titles, why do SA repeatedly fail to win EVEN ONE WC KO match? What happens there?

    On one hand you are saying that SA score more 300+ than India yet they can't even score 200 runs when chasing in crunch times. You are so verbose but not answering this specific question. Why?

    Btw, about the Ind-SA 300+ count, SA got a very strong bowling attack while Ind's bowling is pathetic. Still SA-Ind 300 count is 4-3, so close. Reminds me of that Man-Dog-Chess joke. :-)

  • Harmony111 on January 14, 2014, 6:55 GMT

    Greatest_Game:

    You again did the "As Usual Once Again" act. Several times in the past you have used stats to make some comment that has been obliterated by me and then you do the vanishing act. Don't you ever get it buddy? Never ever use stats while debating with me. I chew and smoke stats on a daily basis and your attempts are frankly kinder garten level.

    So why are you not replying now? Looking for some more stats or what? Or are you just speechless, as you have been several times in the past?

    Here is one more question for you. IF SA are so good in scoring 300+ runs whether home or away then it is EVEN MORE SHAMEFUL that SA can't even score 200 runs when it really matters. For eg the WC 2011 match vs Eng or the WC 2011 QF vs NZ or the ICC-CT2013 SF vs Eng.

  • Greatest_Game on January 14, 2014, 6:40 GMT

    @ Posted by ImpartialExpert made this assertion: "there are 5 test playing countries with similar tracks - India, SL, Bangladesh, Pakistan, WI. In these countries I would say we have more than 70% chance of winning a series against any nation."

    After the last test series between India & SA, you might as well add SA to that list of countries with flat tracks! SA gave India SC type, batsman friendly surfaces to play on. These were not seaming green tops! The tracks were flat and abrasive, with perhaps a little more bounce than in India, but much closer to a SC type track than the ones India were destroyed on in the ODIs. Maybe SA felt sorry after the ODIs, or someone complained?

    India eked out a draw in the first test, and got hammered in the second. Your supposition that, on slow tracks, India has a "70% chance of winning a series against any nation," looks pretty ambitious in that light. In fact, hindsight being 20/20, it looks quite silly to include SA, based in India's series loss!

  • loonykiwirocker on January 14, 2014, 6:26 GMT

    @Yousufahmed11 - the "mighty" Pak team recently lost a test to Zimbabwe and lost to SL, both lower ranked teams. Continue to live on past glories, my friend. Anyway this article talks about the expected performance of Indian team in NZ - not sure why the one eyed Pak fans are getting so worked up. Don't have anything better to do I guess.

  • Greatest_Game on January 14, 2014, 6:07 GMT

    @ Harmony111 writes re India/SA ODIs "Let me straighten this up for you kiddo. I was talking about WC & CT, yeah the real crunch times ... SA can't even score 180 runs on the so called Flat Tracks of India/SC. "

    2011 World Cup: SA BEAT Ind in Nagpur, scoring 300 ... you said "SA can't even score 180 runs on … SC?"

    SA & Ind have played 32 tournaments matches (3+ teams.) SA won 21, Ind won 9.

    SA beat India in 3 finals: 1996 Pepsi Sharjah Cup. 1999/00 LG Cup, & the 2001/02 Standard Bank Triangular Tournament. India beat SA in 1 final: 1996/7 Titan Cup.

    Tournament matches: In India, SA 4, Ind 3. In South Africa, SA 7, Ind 1. In neutral venues, SA 10, Ind 5. In World Cup matches, SA 3-0. In Champions Trophy matches, Ind 3-0.

    SA 21-9 in matches, 3-1 in finals, 4-3 in India, 7-1 in SA, 10-5 in neutral venues, 3-0 in WC matches.

    Ind 3-0 in CT matches.

    Let me "straighten this up for you kiddo." Cricinfo's stats trump your claims!

    Cricinfo plse publish: stats clearly refute his claims.

  • Yuosufahmed on January 14, 2014, 5:58 GMT

    @Fijicricket: "India's loss to Australia in one whitewash is more important to them ! It's great fun to read Pakistan fans forgetting that fact that current Australian team were whitewashed by India at home just few months ago by this young I Indian team!"

    Good that you are a true Ind fan that accept the bitter truth of home track bulying of your team. But, this is not applied to you when you are playing against mighty Pak.

  • Fijicricket on January 14, 2014, 5:33 GMT

    Pakistan were whitewashed by Australia 9-0 in the last three tours down under! YET India's loss to Australia in one whitewash is more important to them ! It's great fun to read Pakistan fans forgetting that fact and the fact the current Australian team were whitewashed by India at home just few months ago by this young I Indian team! Also they keep forgetting Pakistan,s 9-0 whitewash at ALL worldcups AROUND the WORLD by the mighty Indians! Keep it coming Albert Campbell Pakistani and company ! We love your comments. People making a fool of themselves with selected memory is very entertaining to all CRICINFO visitors

  • couchpundit on January 14, 2014, 4:29 GMT

    Its better Dhoni sticks to ODI and T20 and retire from Tests, He is of no use India is better of looking for some other talent, if not gambhir/sehwag. Its a good idea to blood sanju Samson slowly guy has very good potential...hopefully BCCI handles him carefully.

  • on January 14, 2014, 4:21 GMT

    @harmony 111: it's not a flat wicket it's called 'spin' wicket. I repeat it's called 'spin' wicket. In SA out of 47 matches india won only 10 matches in all format. in india out of 35 matches IND won only 18 matches.

  • Yuosufahmed on January 14, 2014, 4:15 GMT

    They are a settled bunch of players and they can do well anywhere until the next match begins...lol I can imaging how they are sitting ducks against NZ quicks. Boult, Southee, Bracewell, Milne, McClenaghan, Mills, Wagner, Ellis. Sure another whitewash with away loosing in tests extending to 0-11 and 2-1 victory in ODIs for Black Caps.

  • ImpartialExpert on January 14, 2014, 4:08 GMT

    @Aussie_the_great and others who bash India for being a slow / spin track bully. there are 5 test playing countries with similar tracks - India, SL, Bangladesh, Pakistan, WI. In these countries I would say we have more than 70% chance of winning a series against any nation. The other four countries - Aus, NZ, Eng and SA I admit that we have about 20 to 25 % chance to win series against any country. So you have to understand that countries with fast bowler friendly tracks are a relative minority. So try to change the way you look at things. SA and Aus are getting disgraceful in their comments. Not just the fans but the team and coaches as well. Philander saying that the Indian batsmen are able to play well only because the pitch slowed down in a public interview is utterly disgraceful. Of course of our past players made such comments like Gambhir saying we beat them 2-0 in India when we lost to Eng and Aus was disgraceful as well.Look at what happened to Eng after they pissed on pitch

  • Agila on January 14, 2014, 3:43 GMT

    And suddenly many here feel that NZ has the best attack in the world becoz they're playing India!!

  • Greatest_Game on January 14, 2014, 2:50 GMT

    @ Harmony 111. I replied to your questions - cricinfo did not publish my reply. I can't help that!

    Referring to SA's ODI record vs India, you wrote "Come to think of it. SA can't score 180 runs in India's flat tracks ... but they score 300+ runs in SA."

    As usual, stats prove you are completely wrong. SA played 23 ODIs in India, & won 10, with 3 scores below 180, and 4 scores of 300 plus. India won 13, with 2 scores below 180, & 3 of 300+. SA made MORE 300+ scores IN INDIA, than IND did!!!

    In SA, Ind played 28 ODI matches, & won FIVE. Yes, won 5, lost 21. Sad. Even worse, Ind has NEVER scored 300+ in SA, but scored below 180 TEN times. SA has two 300+ scores, and 2 below 180 scores.

    SA has scored 300+ in India & SA MORE TIMES THAN IND HAS. SA has 3 scores below 180 in India, but Ind has 10 scores below 180 in SA.

    In all ODIs (WC etc) SA has won 42 to India's 25 - W/L ratio 1.68. SA DOMINATE.

    How can you be so wrong? Don't you check the stats BEFORE you post? Statsguru - try it

  • satchander on January 14, 2014, 2:46 GMT

    Dhoni is always defensive in his statements....he will always we need to "slightly" improve our bowling when the whole world knows that Indian bowling is pathetic...I wish he could be be more open what India's strengths are and its weakness....And he should be more bold in terms of rotating players...I just feel he is not a good test captain...first of all he cannot score in overseas conditions and I am sure he finds it difficult to then criticize other players in his team for their individual performances (Ishant et al), ...So best is keep saying we are a settled unit and do not bring any new bowlers...We need a change in captaincy for Test...I strongly believe Dhoni should lead One-day and T-20 side but surely give up Test captaincy..Only then we will do well abroad, else we will maybe reduce our margins of defeats, but will never be able to win a series oversea...

  • Yuosufahmed on January 14, 2014, 2:45 GMT

    @loonykiwirocker: I agree with the comment of Ausie_the Great on top 4 teams. It should be SA, Aus, Eng and Pak. All know how your team manages to stay at the top half by thrashing minnows and avoiding away series with the real top 4 teams...pathetic.

  • Greatest_Game on January 14, 2014, 2:38 GMT

    The always amusing GRVJPR wrote this:"Dale Steyn was wicketless for 77 overs in the series until umpire deiced to gift him few wickets."

    Gifted him a few wickets, huh? Really?

    1. Pujara. From cricinfo commentary "full enough to draw Pujara to drive at it. The outside edge is taken and AB makes no mistake." No-one questioned the catch, but GRVJPR says it was an "umpiring gift?"

    2. Vijay. "a short ball at the body, off the glove as he looks to defend, he had taken the bottom hand off but that hit the top hand, and through to the keeper." It was clear on replay, but GRVJPR says it was an "umpiring gift?"

    3. Rohit "leaves the ball and loses his middle stump, a golden duck." Nohit got out to the ONLY dismissal requiring NO appeal, yet for GRVJPR this too was an "umpiring gift?"

    Dhoni - clear thick edge to 1st slip. Zaheer - brilliantl caught by AB above his head. Ishant edged to AB. No questions from the batsmen. "Umpiring gifts?"

    GRVJPR - are you incapable of admitting the truth?

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on January 14, 2014, 1:55 GMT

    Does dhoni deserve a place in the squad? That's the main question.

  • on January 14, 2014, 1:39 GMT

    please bring irfan pathan he is good bowler and all rounder remove jadeja from indian team ..

  • Al_Bundy1 on January 13, 2014, 22:58 GMT

    Dhoni is correct to a certain extent - India's batting looks much better now that all the senior citizens have retired. The bowling unit (pace as well as spin) looks far from settled. We need to get rid of senior citizens (Ishant and Zak) in bowling too. Bring in some young bowlers like Rishi Dhawan, Anureet Singh, Pankaj Singh, etc. and replace Ashwin with Rasool. It looks like J&K team has an abundance of fast bowlers. Why not give them a chance in the India A teams??

  • cricmatters on January 13, 2014, 22:45 GMT

    India batting was dominated by the top 3. Shikhar Dhawan / Rohit Sharma / Dhoni and Jadeja have not shown any evidence of technique or temperament required to play in overseas conditions. India's last five wickets have fallen regularly for less than 20 runs unlike Australia where most bowlers can bat and rescue the team from a bad start. India should seriously start thinking playing 2 spinners permanently in the side for overseas tours. This side is far from settled and needs a major shakeup.

  • JRP100 on January 13, 2014, 22:43 GMT

    Dhoni is right that most of the test batsmen will come good with time and all are relatively young (only dhawan and vijay are under pressure with their age). As for the bowling jadeja needs more time outside of the sub continent to be judged properly, but ishant has proved that he cannot perform well anywhere, 50 tests and he does not average below 35 in any condition. Zaheer will most likely not be dropped as dhoni will want a left arm seamer and there are no current alternatives, the only hope is that zaheer starts to seriously fail and pandey and yadav are given opportunities in tests. As for the ODI's, raina will not be dropped easily and rightly so given all he has done (all the games he has won india), but if he fails in NZ he may be dropped to look forward to the world cup. WC11 Dhawan, rohit sharma, kohli, pujara/raina, rayudu/rahane, dhoni, ashwin/binny, jadeja, b kumar, shami, aaron (aaron should be in the odi squad only given his injuries)

  • Capricorn60 on January 13, 2014, 22:24 GMT

    @cricketsunami You say we don't need 5 bowlers if we had someone of the calibre of Steyn. With due respect, even SA with Steyn have always played with 5 proper bowlers due to the luxury of having had a seam bowling all-rounder in Kallis all these years. Austrailia have Watson as their 5th bowler whilst England have Stokes. Hence unless we can find a decent seam-bowling all-rounder soon, we too need five front line bowlers if we hope to do well in overseas Tests. Playing just four bowlers is risky too as a bowler can easily pick up an injury too in the middle of a Test - you saw what happened to Morkel in the 1st Jo'burg Test but SA has Kallis to fall back on. Even with his three seamers, MSD showed no confidence in them on the 4th day of the Durban Test by not taking the new ball at all until he was forced to do so by the umpires. This negativity by him was probably why we lost that Test & the series!

  • spinkingKK on January 13, 2014, 22:11 GMT

    Has anyone thought off the South Africa series as a setup? All through the ODI series, Indian batsmen couldn't put bat on ball. But,comes first test, they are batting like the whole world is not a match for them. But, still, fails to get s result in one of the closest draw matches in history. What a script! Second test was certainly going to be a sell out. Only thing India had to do was to somehow lose the second test match to South Africa. India gets to walk out with some new pride, South Africa gets to keep their ranking and the board gets to keep some ticket money. Not to say the television ratings in India and elsewhere. Everybody happy. The signs were so clear if we looked at the way Indian bowlers bowled in the second innings and how Indian batsmen struggled when Steyn really wanted to take wickets.

  • sixesandfours on January 13, 2014, 22:10 GMT

    New Zealand is not A SPINNER FRIENDLY PITCHES and can India give a break to Ashwin who is clue less oversees and having baggage of self doubt. India should give opprtunities to young all-rounders like Stuart Binny, Rishi Dhawan and R.Jadeja to prepare a team for coming Oversees tours and Worldcup. India Should consider their team for First ODI w/NZ should be - 1. Shikhar 2. Rohit 3. Virat 4. Rahane 5. Raina 6. Dhoni 7. Stuart Binny 8. Jadeja 9. BKumar 10. Shami 11. Sharma/Ishwar Pandey/Varun Aaron. Best Wishes to India on their Oversees trip tours.

  • jango_moh on January 13, 2014, 20:55 GMT

    like many others, i also think we need to start introducing a new WK/batsman in TEST matches... since dhoni's contribution in tests is not significant, i think we shud start playing some of the tests with saha/parthiv etc... the practical issue with that is the captaincy, the captaincy burden might be a little too much for any of the youngsters so we kinda still need dhoni for that..... letsee what happens!!!!

  • on January 13, 2014, 19:40 GMT

    He is exaggerating just india is poor bowling unit...

  • sidh78 on January 13, 2014, 19:34 GMT

    Deaes SL and pak fan(good fans than sl fan but for some pak fans) plz check your teams records of last 3 tours against aus in australia. pak whitewashed by aus 9-0 and SL whitewashed by aus 6-0.so u r team whitewashed by australia by 3 times back to back.india only once whitewashed by australia.(but india also whitewashed aus 4-0) so please tell me who are the big FLATTRACK bullies.who white washed once or who white washed 3 times back to back.i give u stats for that plz refer . first we see pak records 1999-Aus 3-0 2004- Aus 3-0 2009-Aus 3-0. Whitewashed on every occasion. Now how about Sri Lanka. In Australia 2004 -Aus 1-0 2007-Aus 2-0 2012- Aus 3-0. fyi india won series in eng in 2007 and draw series(1-1) in south africa in last tour(almost won the series but rain and bad light save SA from series defeat).now u tell who are real flat track bullies.

  • Raj12345 on January 13, 2014, 19:28 GMT

    I would rate present team is better than when you drop Raina and Jadeja and include Rahane & Pujara in all formats.

    Bring back Karthik, if he is there then Rohit will start playing good.

  • kalyanbk on January 13, 2014, 18:19 GMT

    India were also a settled unit during the 0-8 loss against England and Australia. The question is whether the team can deliver results. Indian fans demonstrated great understanding and low expectations against South Africa. However we must question somewhere why a country as large and diverse as ours is struggling against countries that are smaller than some of our states. Indian Cricketers are well paid and have access to the best facilities and coaches and have no excuses.New Zealand being a small country with a small population has consistently made semi-finals in world cups and I have a great deal of respect for them.

  • aahahaa on January 13, 2014, 18:04 GMT

    tad too early to comment on the side. 1-0 in SA. well might be another loss in NZee. he himself is a below par performer in tests. hyped up side is my opinion.

  • HarrowXI on January 13, 2014, 17:58 GMT

    Ideal ODI team to defend WC 2015

    1)Rohit 2)Pujara 3)V Kohli 4)Rahane 5) Raina 6) Dhoni 7) I pathan(all rounder) 8) Jadeja(all rounder) 9) B kumar 10) Shami Ahmed 11) Umesh yadav

    Reserve : 12)A Raydu(Wk/Batsman) 13 R Ashwin(All rounder/Spiner) 14 Baba Abarjeet (all rounder/Reserve opner) 15) S Dhawan (opner) 16) Ishant Sharma.

    In playing eleven there are 5 specialist Bowler considering india's weak bowling attack. 1) Pathan (Left hand swing bowler) 2) B kumar (Right hand swingbowler) 3) Shami ( Pace bowler who can swing both ways) 4) Yadav ( Righ arm fast ) and Jadeja ( leg spiner). This is ideal bowling attack available at this movment.

    In Batting also enough reserve likes of Dhawan (as he is flat track bully :). Baba abarjeet and Ashwin are all rounder substitute for Jadeja and Irfan Pathan Raydu is wicket keeper Batsman if Dhoni get injured. Ishant Sharma to controversial selection but he is kind of bowler who hit the deck hard and generate bounce. He is substitute of Umesh

  • on January 13, 2014, 17:32 GMT

    Test team: 1.S.Dhawan/R.Sharma, 2.M.Vijay/R.Sharma, 3.C.Pujara, 4.V.Kohli, 5.A.Rahane, 6.M.S.Dhoni, 7.R.Jadeja/A.Rayudu/R.Sharma, 8.R.Ashwin, 9.Z.Khan, 10.M.Shammi, 11.B.Kumar/I.Sharma.

    ODI team: 1.S.Dhawan, 2.R.Sharma, 3.V.Kohli, 4.A.Rahane/A.Rayudu, 5.S.Raina/S.Binny, 6.M.S.Dhoni, 7.R.Jadeja, 8.R.Ashwin, 9.B.Kumar,10.M.Shammi, 11.I.Sharma/Ic.Pandey/V.Aaron.

  • Nampally on January 13, 2014, 17:19 GMT

    @Johnny_129: I like your XI for 2 fundamental reasons - 1. It is balanced XI with 5 Bowlers + 5 Batsmen + WK. 2. It has all right names for batsmen & Bowlers. India's 3 best seamers for NZ, are 3 quickest ones. Kohli will bat #4 in Tests because he is the best suited at that position. Rahane needs to show his consistency. @criketsunami: India needs 5 bowlers in Test match "not 5 Fast bowlers". It could be a combo of 3/2 or 4/1- Seamers/Spinners. India has good quality of pace bowlers but they need experience & coaching, to pitch at the right spots with right field setting. Shami, Yadev & Aaron are all in 140+ KPH zone. That is as good as you can expect from any team in the world. Steyn & Morkel were in 145 KPH zone but they bowled at the right spots. Actually Steyn was 1 for 167 before he bowled his best in the second Test. India has good bowlers, with good slip catching they will succeed. Dhoni is blamed for playing with 4 bowlers instead of 5. It cost India the SA series Loss!

  • Temuzin on January 13, 2014, 16:38 GMT

    Dhoni is right. He has his own mind and has been successful with that mostly. This team will perform better than expected in foreign conditions. Just watch. And all critics will be hiding at that time.

  • Playfair on January 13, 2014, 16:28 GMT

    Dhoni's own position seems to be taken for granted even he has been under performing for quite some time now? For some reason, even though the South African did not perform to the level that was expected of them, the Indians were unable to take advantage of that and raise their game to take advantage of the situation

  • Voice.O.Reason on January 13, 2014, 16:26 GMT

    I am afraid Dhoni looks at the state of the Indian team like a bureacrat would. Leave that kind of thinking to the BCCI administrators!Yes, on the whole there is some improvement compared to past overseas results against top teams. The new players got some good experience against truly hostile attacks on somewhat lively pitches. But as a player, Dhoni needs to be feel disappointed. From a winning position you are almost at the brink of defeat. When a match is to be saved, you fold for about 150. Your tail doesn't wag at all. You get out to mediocre spinners. These are things that speak of a team that isn't putting maximum effort out in the middle and feeling satisfied with mere passing grades. Fans get infuriated by this kind of attitude.

  • Temuzin on January 13, 2014, 16:15 GMT

    How increasing number of fast bowlers from 4-5 would have helped India? Its not the quantity, it is quality of the bowlers and India has no quality fast bowler at present. Those harping on 5 bowler theory should realize that if India had just one bowler of the caliber of Steyn, we would have won the series. Replacing one failure with another or piling all failed ones together will not solve the problem. So stop blaming MSD. Get real and BCCI should try to rope in dozens of potential at an early age and start a scientific program to train as good fast bowlers.

  • Johnny_129 on January 13, 2014, 16:14 GMT

    India will have better chances of success if they play both Jadeja & Ashwin at the expense of Rohit. India desperately needs to strengthen their bowling. Naive fans are calling for Dhawan's head after a poor series in SA. Dhawan actually looked like he could get runs but kept getting out. Rohit, on the other hand, looked all at sea! Also Ishant is far too inconsistent to justify his place - Time for him to take a break. Zak is past his best but could stay in the side as a mentor for at least a couple more tours. India also needs a hostile pace attack. Current Test eleven in NZ should be as follows, in my humble opinion: 1.Dhawan 2.Vijay 3.Pujara 4.Rehane 5.Kholi 6..Dhoni 7.Jadeja 8.Ashwin 9.Shami 10.Yadav 11.Aaron/BK/Zak/Pandey. I would swap Rehane to 4 and Kohli to 5 as Kohli is a faster scorer who can lift the pressure along with Dhoni while Rehane is more of a steady player with a solid technique better suited at 3 or 4.

  • rphanikanth on January 13, 2014, 16:02 GMT

    How will India fare well in the T20 World Cup without playing more than a single T20 in the past 6 months? I can't believe the scheduling!!

  • SnowSnake on January 13, 2014, 15:58 GMT

    I think India needs a new wicket keeper. Dhoni should retire as his own performance is much below his own average.

  • Noni on January 13, 2014, 15:45 GMT

    The idea is right to back players but it should be done unbiased. I feel the same is not true for Yuvraj. Raina and Rohit have been given way too many chances and have been backed for a long time may be that also is a record in some way. Whereas Yuvraj is a proven champion and after the world cup he went through a lot. Now when he is trying really hard and did well in T20 against Australia in chasing 202 all he needed was continuous backing from his captain and selectors. He wasn't given much bowling and Raina was given way too much bowling. He still made more runs than Raina and they both are great fielders. I think Dhoni who is otherwise right on many occasions is not right on Yuvraj. If we are looking at a team of 2015 worldcup we have to bring Yuvraj and his confidence back.

  • CricketMaan on January 13, 2014, 15:44 GMT

    So much critics for Kholi, Pujara et all that SA pitches were dull and hence they got away. Yes SA pitches were not screaming, but is that Kholi and Pujara's fault? Dale did show his class on a flat durban but Kholi was unfortunate to be given out in that 2nd innings. Why not we wait at least until that England series when these 2 would have played a minimum of 9 tests overseas under different conditions before making a judgement. As fans we need to back our players not just keep criticizing for everything that they do.

  • Capricorn60 on January 13, 2014, 15:04 GMT

    With our pace bowling already being the weak link in all our teams, I hope Dhoni has realized after the recent SA tour that he cannot do well in an overseas Test having only four front line bowlers - as he does back home when his spinners take wickets by the bucketful. As we don't seem to have a genuine seam-bowling all-rounder at present, perhaps one option in having five bowlers is to have Ashwin batting at No. 6 as he is quite a decent batsmen & looks quite comfortable batting against good pace bowling too. It is also risky playing just four bowlers as one could easily pick an injury whilst playing.

  • sk123 on January 13, 2014, 15:03 GMT

    Agree with HennopsRiverEnd and Rajeshj. I'm not convinced that the team is up to the mark yet. The ODIs in SA exposed India and the pitches in test cricket were 60% of what they usually are in SA. I do like Pujara, Kohli and Rahane though and I'm one of the people in favor of Karthik (if he's backed by BCCI) as wk/batsman for the tests.

    Only good thing I noticed on the tour of SA was Amla's rare failures against India in test matches. He's pretty much automatic against India otherwise.

  • Nampally on January 13, 2014, 14:20 GMT

    @Jingopak: Yes, India had 135 runs & 450 runs to defend. They should have bowled out SA easily. But India had just 4 bowlers who were stretched in the first innings. No Nation in the world plays a 5 day Test with 4 bowlers. Also 3 out of 4 Bowlers were seamers- one of them, ZAK, 35 years old & playing after long lay off. Playing with 4 bowlers is insanity. Dhoni not only did this in the First Test but repeated it in the Second Test too, with disastrous results. Why were Yadev & Kumar on the bench in the second Test vs. SA instead of 3 "Tired" bowlers? Had India played with 5 bowlers, India would have won the First test easily + Second Test a Draw - at worst. So a winnable series was lost because of Captaincy blunders! As regards the leg spinners I mentioned- Chawla, Mishra, Rahul Sharma- why were they included in the squad if only place for them was on the Bench? They were in the squad based on Form & Performance. A squad of 16 is selected to replace tired bowlers with fresh Legs!

  • Arun.Iyer on January 13, 2014, 13:38 GMT

    For once, i would like MSD to accept that he needs to contribute more and lead from the front outside Asia. He is the most experienced batsman now, and hasn't scored a single ton outside Asia in tests. Never doubt his ability, but time has come to look at his own batting. He needs to score and score big abroad. When a captain leads from the front and attacks, the team normally comes out hard and triumphant.

  • HennopsRiverEnd on January 13, 2014, 13:11 GMT

    Don't understand why some Indian fans see their recent tour to SA as a 'success'. The Indian team did not win anything and were hammered in both ODI matches and lost by 10wickets in the Test Match. Of course batsmen will score hundreds, that's what they are meant to do... Pitches were relatively flat I must add

  • Rajeshj on January 13, 2014, 13:01 GMT

    Excepting Pujara, Rahane, Kohli and to a certain extent Vijay, the batting order doesn't appear still settled.. Let us not get too carried away by the South African tour.. Still one could hear whispers from players, ex-players and commentators that both the pitches looked more like a sub-continental pitch with slow-pace, no lateral movement etc.. We were clueless in the ODIs in SA, where their bowlers blew away our batting line-up.. And its still a mystery on why similar pitches were not used for tests... We need to evaluate the batsmen more on an Australian and English wicket before accepting Dhoni's statements.. Also, when he says he wants to give a long rope to his players, he needs to stick by it.. It doesn't just apply to Dhawan/Rohit/Ishant.. It also applies to Ashwin, who needs a few matches in overseas pitches consistently, before being stamped as an Indian pitch bowler.. Ashwin should have played in Durban ahead of Jadeja.. Dhoni appears a lot biased..

  • on January 13, 2014, 12:53 GMT

    I think dhoni spoke what rationally seems right. this side is pretty much settled except for some changes in the bowling line-up depending on conditions. indian overseas tours r normally 4 yrs apart which should b taken into consideration while judging any player. one bad tour doesn't make somebody bad. I think which should persist with the current bunch especially batters. Even the fab four became fabulous only after 5 yrs playing consistently as a close knit.

  • on January 13, 2014, 12:48 GMT

    Dhoni has always been positive and that in turn produced magical results in the past. But things are going to be different & the coming days are going to be the toughest for Dhoni as a captain since finding exact replacement for the retired stalwarts is not so easy. No doubt the new gen players are talented, but they will have to work hard to bring India back to it's past glory. I don't think India will be able to defend their title in the coming 2015 WC with current lineup, if they couldn't find a better bowling combination & suitable replacements for Yuvi & Sehwag.

  • irishhawks on January 13, 2014, 12:01 GMT

    So finally Captain cool or captain clueless says Indian Team is settled Unit...Yes indeed captain..India is pretty consistent side...When it tours abroad it repeats its pathetic performances again and again and you have no idea whatsoever how to win on foreign soil. Tke kiwis lightly and another shame will be added to your pathetic overseas record. But you cant be called undefeated at home too..You lost Test series to England at home...But as always you have bagful of excuses like some decisions went against us, boys are inexperienced but they showed good fight, it was not our day we tried our best...etc. Pity Indian selectors cant do something about it.

  • SekarSa1 on January 13, 2014, 11:35 GMT

    I think India should play more Warm-ups when they tour outside sub-continent. So, they will adapt their conditions more quickly. It will help our team to play with right combinations. I like England Team preparation for all tours outside their home country.

  • sony_sr on January 13, 2014, 11:12 GMT

    Our bowling line-up is far from settled. Infact its one of the weakest amoung test playing nations. We need to try out every single performing bowler in ranji trophy and see if he can perform at intl level. If not just replace him with a new guy and the process should continue until we find a good quality bowling lineup. Unfortunately dhoni is more comfortable with sticking on to the same team irrespective of performances. Even batting unit we can't say its settled based on 2-3 completed innings in SA. If they perform consistently in NZ, then in ENG and AUS later, then we can say they have settled.

  • IndianInnerEdge on January 13, 2014, 11:07 GMT

    Make Craig McDermott the bowling coach, he is the last hope for turning it around for IShant, umesh, et all.....

  • on January 13, 2014, 10:29 GMT

    In South Africa, though India did well in the first test, got blown away by pace in the second. Kiwis showed that they have improved particularly in the pace department, and that can be the bogey man for India. Indians over the years have shown they are vulnerable to the swinging ball and I am pretty sure the Kiwi administration will not have spinning tracks to support India. Sure Zareer, Sharma and the others are bowling well but the Kiwis have the ability to handle the swinging ball. This will be quite an interesting series because there is every possibility of Kiwis outperforming India with the ball. On paper the Indians look superior with the willow. But Kiwis have unearthed some new talent who looks pretty good and did well against W Indies. I predict a close series with Kiwis coming out on top.

  • Assertive-Indian on January 13, 2014, 10:29 GMT

    Australians are home track bullies. They lost 7-0 in abroad tests. The present Australian side is capable of winning at home only. I predict a 3-0 whitewash in February in favour of SA. And Pakistanis, let me ask you just one question: how many tests have you won in Australia in your entire history? After that find out how many tests India has won in Australia. Then we will talk...

  • Naresh28 on January 13, 2014, 10:22 GMT

    @rajurmaki - agree till we get a good bowling unit. We will only win tests in India not outside. BCCI has been aware, the fans have clamoured for changes.........we live and dream on.

  • loonykiwirocker on January 13, 2014, 10:10 GMT

    @Ausie_the_Great - you are fully entitled to your personal opinion on what the top 4 teams should be. If you feel that an Aussie team that has lost their last 7 tests on the trot in India, should be placed at 2, that is your problem. We prefer to rely on the ICC rankings that are far more reliable and unbiased. @israrak - last time I checked Pak had lost 10 consecutive tests in Aus including 3 consecutive series whitewashes. Will take some doing by any other team to match such a poor record.

  • INDSlider on January 13, 2014, 9:48 GMT

    @ Fijicricket: Please don't rate your homebulies with the top 4 for gods sake. Top 4 ranking teams in tests should be SA, Aus, Eng and Pak in that order. Current ranking system is flawed. You get humiliated in SA, loose to Eng, Pak at home, still at No 2..huh Even mediocre SL managed to beat SA in SA and Pak in UAE.

  • on January 13, 2014, 9:33 GMT

    @GRVJPR Look at Ishant Sharma's stats, you would understand what I mean...he has the worst bowling averages for anyone having played over 50 test matches. And 50 test matches is a lot. He should be a strike bowler but sadly he just doesn't have enough pace and aggression.

  • on January 13, 2014, 9:02 GMT

    Yeah I totally agree with u Dhoni.. we r a settled unit to lose abroad... Hahahaha :-D

  • on January 13, 2014, 9:00 GMT

    @GRVJPR : Your comments are hilarious, please never leave cricinfo! Your knowledge is amazing and I'm in complete awe!

  • israrak on January 13, 2014, 8:58 GMT

    @ Fijicricket and GRVJPR ... the two frustrated indian fans ... for ur analysis Pakistan just won an odi series in SA whereas ur team was thrashed 2-0 ... we also won against you at your own home 2-1 ... while you lost against ENG at your own home we defeated them in UAE 3-0 .... while you were thrashed in Aus 4-0 we drew with them 1-1 in ENG in 2010 where conditions are more tough ... so who is better ??? so stop commenting about other teams and focused only on your team ... its 0-9 overseas now ... maybe after 1 yr 0-15 ... lol

  • on January 13, 2014, 8:48 GMT

    Sorry India fans - if we prepare greentops our seam attack is going to pump your batters

  • on January 13, 2014, 8:47 GMT

    277 cmnts already and still flowing in. thanks to some outsiders.no doubt India is d most discussed be it the match between any country!!!

  • AquaNick on January 13, 2014, 8:38 GMT

    I think the Indian team might not do so well in NZ. All the SA hype put aside, the side still lacks tearaway fast bowlers. It is also unlikely that Dhone will give enough opportunities to the likes of Ishwar Pandey and Varun Aaron. Even Stuart Binny might warm the benches.

    PS : Rahul Shukla is the new Atul Sharma.. :D

  • Fijicricket on January 13, 2014, 8:21 GMT

    @mzm1499 There is just one 9-0 thrashing- That is Pakistan,s record losses against India in world cups!!! I assure you that record will never be broken. India has already beaten Australia- another thing Pakistan will never be able to match! Definitely not with bowlers like Junaid or Ajmal who can't even make it in a village team in India ! Pls concentrate on your lowly rated Pakistan and leave teams like India/SA/Austalia/England alone . It's a different ball game at that level! Good luck against Scotland/Zimbabwe/Afghanistan/SL. All these teams of same standard makes interesting cricket for you and Albert Cambell lolzzz

  • calcu on January 13, 2014, 8:15 GMT

    India is indeed a settled unit now. We have had a good year in 2013. However, taking Nz lightly can be a big mistake. They almost defeated Eng in a test series at home and crushed WI. My guess is that india will win the test series 1-0 and ODI series 3-2.

  • on January 13, 2014, 8:10 GMT

    indias pase balling unit is the worst among the major test playing nations. may be better than zimbabwe and bangladesh. At present Sri lanka is a better unit than india.

  • cricketpurist on January 13, 2014, 7:54 GMT

    Dhoni says and everyone agrees!! why is no one in media making any statement. He says 1 session in South africa cost us the game.!! can u belive it. He has nothing to say about the one day whitewash in south africa. Where are you building as a team it was a hard fought series win against aussie in one dayers. No one has forgotten the surrender to england on home soil. beating windies comprehensively everyone does that but other losses are flashing everywhere.

  • on January 13, 2014, 7:51 GMT

    india bowling is still weak. plus 2014 will be a bad year for india in test matches. they will be hammered in england and then australia later in the year . dhoni will deffo retire from test cricket

  • GRVJPR on January 13, 2014, 7:41 GMT

    Pakistan overseas record 55-0 in favor of opponent, Pakistan is worst cricket side in world.

  • GRVJPR on January 13, 2014, 7:40 GMT

    @ Vijay Swaminathan, Ishant sharma did very well in first test getting top order wickets. Problem was Zaheer Khan and not Ishant sharma. And mind you even Dale Steyn was wicketless for 77 overs in the series until umpire deiced to gift him few wickets. And about batting, Hashim Amla was a failure as well but no one in south africa cry like some of you Crying Like Babies about why Dhoni is Supporting his team. By your logic South AFrica should throw out Steyn and Amla out of team. Jadeja had an exceptional year. He did his ob taking 6 wickets on picth where overrated Ajmal could take only 1 tailender wicket. Jadeja won us champions trophy and many other tournaments with his fielding and batting skills. It was Jadejas run out in champions trophy versus south afrcia that turned the match on his head.

  • on January 13, 2014, 7:36 GMT

    dont be over complacent.that was the reason of rohits failure in the entire series and kohlis one day pethetic prformance.certainly you can do it if you have confidence not conplacency

  • on January 13, 2014, 7:33 GMT

    I think we too much appriciate NZ's, we know how good they are, we are talking too much about India's performance there. IF India looses both in ODI's and Tests, that means they have really a poor team like other minnows. It's very poor to considering NZ to better than India. They are not played whole year (like us). I just want to know now when Indians try to their best Overseas. These all talking are meaningless. U r No.1 team in ODI's and No.2 in tests, then perform like champions. Specially Mr. Dhoni in Tests. otherwise leave that place.

  • GRVJPR on January 13, 2014, 7:31 GMT

    @Shongololo, Mate, It's not my fault if your body has no brain.

  • on January 13, 2014, 7:07 GMT

    I should salute dada sarau gangulu for building the team what did dhoni do kicked out shewag gautam harbjan yuvraj zaheer and played hid players Vijay rohit ashwin jadeja suresh raina try to build a strong india politics is being played inside its not visible to people you have to sense it. dhoni is not playing his natural game remove his captaincy he will play the way he was out in second innings in 2nd test of south Africa reflects that

  • mzm149 on January 13, 2014, 7:04 GMT

    I am sure 9-0 drubbing of India be extended to 10-0 or 11-0 after this series.

  • on January 13, 2014, 7:00 GMT

    Dhoni makes sense, but having realized that the bowlers need to bang the ball in to extract bounce and pace of the pitch, there seems no improvement in bowlers like Ishant Sharma who has got good height and seems the only one who could do this job Ala Morne Morkel. But sadly he hasnt grown as a bowler and its time to look at other options like Ishwar Pandey, Varun Aaron. Ishant doesn't deserve a place in this team. Needs to go back to the grind of bowling in FC matches and gain some strength and pace to his repertoire.

  • on January 13, 2014, 6:59 GMT

    what is dhonis batting performance in south africs series why is this not counted, what is ashwins performance what is batting performance from jadeja did our opening pair perform well when compared to gautam and shewag was muralis and dhawans performance ok why did we loose test matches due to weak batting

  • CherryWood_Champion on January 13, 2014, 6:55 GMT

    First of Dhoni does not deserve a place in playing test X1 for any of the overseas test matches in Aus / SA / Eng / NZ. Rayudu should double up as a Wicket Keeper and a specialist batsman. Jadeja should start contribute in terms of runs also. And Indian team needs five bowlers to win matches in these countries. Dhawan deserves another chance. If he does fail Rohit should be tried as an opener. Pandey should be given a chance in the 2nd test by dropping non-performing bowler from first test. My Test XI would be 1)Dhawan 2)Vijay 3)Pujara 4)Kohli (Capt) 5)Rahane 6)Rayudu(WK) 7)Jadeja 8)Zaheer 9)Shami 10) Umesh Yadav 11) Varun/Pandey For ODIs/T-20s .. Dhoni is an automatic choice. My ODI/T-20 XI would be 1)Dhawan 2)Rohit 3)Kohli 4)Rahane 5)Rayudu/Raina 6)Dhoni(Capt & WK) 7)Binny 8)Jadeja 9)Bhuvaneshwar 10)Shami 11)Umesh Yadav/Ishwar Pandey The biggest lame duck selection for me is Saha. Poor chap he is being taken only to warm the benches and is the only one sure of not playing. sigh ~~

  • Iceman29 on January 13, 2014, 6:51 GMT

    Instead of finding faults in other teams why dont we acknowledge the faults in our own team.....There is no denying that we have found some 3 to 4 good players such as Pujara, Rahane, Shami along with Kohli for the test matches but we are nowhere near settled...The concern is mainly on Bowling department..Zak will not be there forever...Ishant is an useless bowler who provides a good performance once in a blue moon and dissappear....I dont even want to talk about Ashwin's performance abroad.....Why Ojha and Mishra are being denied regrularly??Why are the selectors not giving chances to allrounder such as Pervez Rasool??

  • BustIPL on January 13, 2014, 6:50 GMT

    The immediate challenge is to fare better then the lowly rated WI in NZ. WI have done well in few games despite being heavily depleted side both in the batting and bowling department. On the other hand NZ remain unpredictable in their backyard and can display variety of strengths ranging from the top ranking team to the minnows. Indian bats are flourishing and tough contest will be on the offing.

  • anver777 on January 13, 2014, 6:29 GMT

    As usual Dhoni is playing a mind game before a oversea tour.... NZ is tough at their own conditions & i still believe it has to be close battle even though Ind has a strong batting lineup....

  • GRVJPR on January 13, 2014, 6:27 GMT

    @soumyas, I have serious dobts about your criketing sense. Murali Vijay did exceptionally well in South Africa. His judgement of off stump was one of the best I have seen after Gavaskar. He was unlucky to miss out on 100 in second test match. He is still in his early days and there are many worst batsmen in world who are playing cricket for their countries than Vijay. That was the best bowling attack he was facing and he did really well and did not ran away from tours like some of the others making excuse of mental illness seeing the fast bowler.

  • sachin_equal_to_bradman on January 13, 2014, 5:58 GMT

    @Alexk400: Is it so??? then name a single indian captain who has won more tests than dhoni and name a single captain who has more trophies and world cups than dhoni and name a single captain who has more odi win % than msd!!! if u answer this then i wont talk abt msd.

  • on January 13, 2014, 5:35 GMT

    Dhoni is the only good thing happend to Indian cricket after Tendulker..Mark my words, whn Dhoni retires, virath or Rohit wont b able to handle the heat the way Dhoni has been doing it since he started playing International cricket!! I' am a Pakistani and regard ths guy alot..He is DHONTASTIC!! :)

  • Alexk400 on January 13, 2014, 5:01 GMT

    Dhoni is not always right. Anything he says about matches in india , he is 100% correct. But outside india his brain do not work. Simply because he is not a good captain when odds are stack against him. But when you give him tool he is excellant captain. He is not a guy who can bring best out when his team has weakness. he can not rally his team when odds are against his team. He is a guy who does well when he has strong team. Poor captains like rahul dravid , anil kumble lose with good teams. Dhoni great captain in india , he has kinda of aura around him when he play in india but he literally zero contributor as captain , player and wicket keeper in overseas TEST. He is awful outside india. So you have to take his comments his team settled with a grain of salt as it applies only in home conditions.

  • on January 13, 2014, 4:37 GMT

    yes i agree indian team is settled unit but only in home conditions...And i also agree with dhoni that the upcoming odi matches will be high scoring games(thanks to our bowling!)...

  • satchander on January 13, 2014, 4:32 GMT

    @Anand Kumar....We need green tops, dust bowls, hard pitches and everything in right proportion....I strongly feel this will test our bowlers under all conditions and would help us gauge which bowler(s) is able to adapt well and bowl well under most if not all conditions....I am sure getting all kinds of surfaces is the way to go forward instead of only having dust bowls in Ranji...

  • GRVJPR on January 13, 2014, 4:11 GMT

    India is in a settling process and they are doing it quicker than anybody else and that is what making people jealous and unsettling.

  • Fijicricket on January 13, 2014, 4:08 GMT

    234 comments already and the match is a week away!! THE POWER of India !!! thanks to SL and Pak fans like blade runner and Pakistani Albert Cmabell (nice name for a Pakistani) that India remains the most debated team from all outsiders!

  • GRVJPR on January 13, 2014, 4:07 GMT

    Dhoni is right, but people don't want to agree with him. This is because few people in India thinks if they don't agree with DHONI they will be called great cricket experts. But realty is that DHONI is right. He has seen the potential in younger lot and knows that with experience and exposure they are on the verge of making a really good side. Great Cricket Analyst's (who disagreee with dhoni) can continue to play their CRY BABY GAME.

  • GRVJPR on January 13, 2014, 4:04 GMT

    @Choolaka Hewawasam, South Africa can win only useless series at home only but always choked against India in world cups and maor tournaments. If India manipulate their picthes like south africa, SA won;t survive even a session of cricket in India. But when we make pitches to suit us they start playing CRY BABY GAMES.

  • GRVJPR on January 13, 2014, 4:02 GMT

    @ Choolaka Hewawasam, Who told you that?? We won the ICC cahmpions trophy and bilateral series vs South AFrica is nothing compared to that. First wins some real tournaments and then talk.

  • GRVJPR on January 13, 2014, 3:58 GMT

    @ cricketsubh, India ust don;t depend only on Kohli and Pujara. Rahane did very well in South AFrica, Also some of the men who got low scores are talented players. Not every one score in all series. Even Hashim Amla looked ordinary against India in a recent test series. I thought Indian openers were just about getting into form but series was too short. With that experience they will make up against new zealand. Good players don't miss out that often.

  • GRVJPR on January 13, 2014, 3:55 GMT

    @ Jake Hishon, We in India respect New zealand. In crunch times they are better than South AFrica and they don't choke like south africa. But here people are not giving the respect to young Indian team with experience of just 12 test matches in case of 90% of players who performed so well thus far winning us champions trophy etc. What is the fault of these youngsters if our old generation assembled horrible record overseas.

  • on January 13, 2014, 3:51 GMT

    "We are settled unit" that is ridiculous. Indian team is hammered in ODIs and beaten in Tests and MSD says we are settled unit. I think except Pujara non of them are good test players

  • on January 13, 2014, 3:28 GMT

    Dhoni's Policy: You back individuals. Individuals will back you. Am I correct? Never accepts his faults. Simply keep responding awkwardly to every question posed.

  • Harmony111 on January 13, 2014, 2:54 GMT

    @Greatest_Game:

    Tell me one thing, do you really do not know the context or do you pretend to be that ignorant cos the fool can't be fooled?

    Did you not see the context I had indicated when I said the Crunch Time i my comment? Did you not see what I meant when I talked about SA's failures in India and England in Crunch Times?

    Perhaps you still don't get it. Let me straighten this up for you kiddo. I was talking about WC & CT, yeah the real crunch times.

    It all looks very nice for SA to be scoring runs AT HOME vs a bowling attack that is rated rubbish by even Ind's most die-hard fans but the truth is, in crunch times, SA can't even score 180 runs on the so called Flat Tracks of India/SC. Do you remember how SA choked in the last WC? Not once, as they did in the past but TWICE.

    TWICE SA choked when asked to chase scores like ~175 & ~225. What a horrible team that !!!

    SA did the same in Eng too. In CT SF, they couldn't put bat to ball on SC like wickets & got only ~175.

  • on January 13, 2014, 2:50 GMT

    I don't think New Zealand are getting the respect they deserve here, everyone expecting a white wash ? look at what happens to everyone when they under-estimate our little country. Drawing 2 series with england just before they lost form and beating west Indies like they have they are in very good form, combine that with a home ground advantage and this will be a very interesting series

  • WC2011Champs on January 13, 2014, 2:48 GMT

    Jimmyvida, your comments are most sensible. Dhoni might have made comments like settled India team just to keep the morale high of the non-performers. We all know the bowling is not of the international standards. Outside subcontinent it does get exposed. Friend Nampally, chopping and changing is not the solution. We have seen them all - Yadav, Aaron, Ishant, Amit Mishra, Chawla and others. When they are in playing XI they don't exactly set the stage on fire. Last two years if any Indian bowler had mesmerizing spells that was Bhuvi. He needs favorable conditions and NZ tour (and England later) should provide him just that. His wickets are greatest of batsmen - Sachin first ball, Clarke after 3 double-centuries, Cook in top form, Pietersen, Bell, Trott, Morgan, Younis, Hafeez, Umar. Selectors must take a note of this. For a settled look that test cricket is all about Bhuvi, Shami, and Jadeja must be automatic. Add an express 145kmph and add one suited for the conditions.

  • cricketsubh on January 13, 2014, 2:45 GMT

    I don't think india will win test series in nz if they only depends on kholi and pugara to make runs this nz team is lot sattel under macullum and they got tayor in great from and also they got batter bowling attack then india if they make gud tracks like they made for series vs wl i think they should win the series if they make plat pitches like they made in last tour whien india tours i don't think they can beat india lot depends on what kind off pitches nz makes and its time for dhoni to perform and make runs for team in tests as a captain he need to lead from the front if he fails to make runs and if india lose in nz dhoni should step down the captain ship give other a chance to captain .

  • satchander on January 13, 2014, 2:38 GMT

    Agreed that you need to back individuals but at the same time you need to keep some healthy competition going. At least we need to change the fast bowling combination as per the performance. Ishant Sharma must be given a good break and lets please pick Bhuvi, Umesh, Varun etc. Why are we not rotating our fast bowlers and given them enough chances before settling on a good combination ?? Simply backing individuals such as Ishant and Zaheer blindly for many years is not going to be good. Please rotate fast bowlers on regular basis so that we can see who is really good under most conditions.

  • CricketFanIndUS on January 13, 2014, 2:35 GMT

    Dhoni is giving a vote of confidence to his players. He will get the best out of the team if the players are assertive and are backed by their captain. Players who have not done well in the last tour of SA need this as one bad series does not make a bad player. He also gently stated some of the weaknesses of the team that he is having to deal with 1) not having a seamer all rounder is always going to be hard on overseas tours 2) bowlers not extracting enough bounce on drier wickets 3) the tail not doing enough with the bat (to at least hang around and support batsmen). The recent SA test series was pretty close considering crucial bad umpiring decisions against us. We are getting close to having a good squad for test cricket.

  • balajik2505 on January 13, 2014, 1:47 GMT

    I see some hope in the present Ranji Trophy for the bowling. All the teams at the QF had a balanced bowling attack and by all accounts, the pitches had grass. If the Ranji Trophy continues like this, in a few years we may have many good seam bowlers, out of which some exceptional ones rise. Just hope they don't go back to dust-bowls next season. For all the training, cricketers are turned out by the domestic system. It is the case everywhere. Let us hope the domestic teams do that in their self-interest. For starters, the Chepauk wicket. In the 1970's Chepauk was widely called the fastest wicket in India. Today it is an apology of a wicket.

  • on January 13, 2014, 1:22 GMT

    The problem of using lively green tracks in Ranji is that mediocre bowlers like Vinay Kumar, Mohit Sharma etc take heaps of wickets. I have seen most of Mohit Sharma's wkts in Ranji are on green tops in Haryana. Even Nehra this season taking loads of wickets on green tops in Delhi. These bowlers are thoroughly exposed in Intl cricket. Green tops might help our batsmen but not our bowlers. It's on non responsive pitches we like our faster bowlers to perform. That is where Pankaj Singh is exceptional. He actually added a yard or two of pace.

  • baba6660 on January 13, 2014, 1:13 GMT

    In Sachin, Dravid, Laxman, Sehwag & Saurav we had a batting card, where usually atleast two out of the five were scoring a century and it was for that very reason the team were in a position to reach the number one status in Test Cricket. It was only in the last two series in Australia & England that these Golden Greats failed to perform as a unit. In the current side, excepting Kohli & Pujara and to some extent Rahane we do not have players with the technique, grit & determination to stay in the middle and play quality fast bowling. In South Africa, Rohit Sharma displayed poor body language, technique and looked lackadaisical. Shikhar is unable to curb the tendency to cut & hook the rising deliveries despite the knowledge that he is not in a position to control these shots. We need to find solid openers who can stay in the middle, play rising deliveries and provide good foundation for Test Matches. As far as the bowling department is concerned, we must find couple more Shammi's and a

  • Biggest_Cricket_Fan on January 13, 2014, 0:28 GMT

    Not sure what we can say about these comments from MSD. He is playing total fav purism in her. Except for few exceptions, yes I think team is stable, but some exceptions such as Rohit Sharma for #5 and r. ashwin and Ishant including MSD the team is ok, I personally feel openers need to be given few chances on tours, but I think RS and MSD and ashwin along with Ishant are total failures and need to be rectified at least on Australia tour. I would definitely like to see how Ashwin and Rohit perform on NZ tour which could be used as a yardstick for Australia tour.

  • on January 13, 2014, 0:28 GMT

    Shyam, u are taking rubbish, By now u must know that Dhoni & co like any other team will always strive for better performance. The Indian team had about 3 centuries and 3 missed centuries in their recent SAF tour which by any international standardsand that too against world class bowling is excepetionally good. Remember this team with the excepetion of Dhoni, Zak and to some extent Ishant Sharma was a fairly inexperienced team with lesser international exposure.

    To say that Dhoni will lose in New Zealand is a premature statement.

  • on January 13, 2014, 0:04 GMT

    I expect India to win ODI comfortable by 4-1 margin and Test Matches by 1-0. India is too good for New Zealand. It has too good batsmen and OK bowling. I do not see NZ beating India in ODI.

  • whocareswhowins on January 13, 2014, 0:03 GMT

    Most of the comments here are spot-on...MSD has been a fantastic ODI batsman and captain for India, winning ODI tournaments in India and abroad. Hats off to him, and we acknowledge that. HOWEVER, he is not a Test class batsman, his Test captaincy is pathetic and some of the things he is saying are utter RUBBISH. On top of that, he favours some very average players (I'm stopping short of saying 'cronies'). We all know who they are!! And that BRAIN-DEAD Ishant Sharma and the rest of the useless bowlers (except Mohammed Shami) will once again put in some mind-numbingly frustrating performances in NZ. We need a a new bowling coach (maybe Zaheer should be given that role now). To teach Ishant to pitch it up on a good-length and stop bowling back-of-a-length drivel at medium pace..

  • class9ryan on January 12, 2014, 23:55 GMT

    Potentially India has the team that can go forward with players like C Pujara, Rahane, Kohli, Rohit, Vijay. But at the moment they look settled but aren't good as MS probably thinks. For this batting unit to look good MS, Ashwin have to contribute overseas and Shikhar who has played just 2 games away has to play well at the top. This Indian outfit is good but not yet formidable, there is a long way to go.

  • Mr_Anonymous on January 12, 2014, 23:39 GMT

    I think Dhoni being optimistic about his side is good. I think what he is saying is that we have some players now who "can" do well in all conditions. Some of them have done well in a few games (like Jadeja in the last test against SA). However, that means we have now found a spinner who can do well abroad (we haven't had one since Kumble) and that he "can" be the spinner (Ashwin somehow does not make use of the opportunities given, maybe Aswhin should talk to Murali or Swann and get some tips on how to do well abroad). In the batting department, we now have Vijay, Kohli, Pujara, Rahane and Dhawan who "can" do well abroad (Dhawan in Eng for CT, rest in SA). I think the weak link is still the bowling department. Maybe Umesh Yadav and Varun Aaron are back to being fully fit (we don't know, Dhoni may) and they "can" do well abroad. If the core of the team does well, it will give new players (Pandey, Binny) time to find their bearings. The real question is: Can "can" become "will" in NZ?

  • pat_one_back on January 12, 2014, 23:03 GMT

    Interesting contrasting Dhoni & Cook, I mean who is India's coach & does it matter vs who is Eng's captain and does it matter with Andy Flower running the show and Cook unable to even comment on team composition. Completely opposite ends of the spectrum! Appropriate pre-tour talk from MS but no real substance behind it. Can only hope NZ play well enough to force India to question the sustainability of building batsmen who can't adapt to bounce and bowlers who give up pace due to the lack of bounce at home. A well rounded Indian team and a return to the more variable Indian pitches of the pre-Dhoni era would be amazing for Indian & world cricket in the long run. Spin & stroke play will remain strengths but there is room for all disciplines!

  • on January 12, 2014, 22:11 GMT

    he himself a good batsman but aside kohli and raina India doesnt have good batsman. With the bowlers like Ishant, India is not a settled team. IND batsmen will suffer in NZ especially Dawan, Sharma, and others who played bad in the SA

  • basusri133b on January 12, 2014, 21:34 GMT

    One area that India needs to improve is in close in catching. We have still not found suitable replacements for Rahul Dravid & VVS Lakshman in the slip cordon. R. Ashwin & Rohit Sharma are unsuited to field in this position. Neither of them have been endowed with natural reflexes, something that cannot be remedied with practice. Kholi, Rahane, Pujara, & Binny would be better suited to field in the slips.

    We could have beaten the South Africans in at least one Test, had we held on to catches at crucial stages. Ashwin & Sharma being the offenders.

  • jingopack on January 12, 2014, 21:22 GMT

    @Nampally our bowlers had 135 overs and 450 runs to defend in 1st test in SA series but failed ...forget wicket taking...not able to contain and even came close to losing it...imagine SA in tat position they would have won...from a dominant position india lost 2nd test...coz SA had a champion bowler dale steyn...by saying truely world class i mean somebdy like him..another ex is saeed ajmal...hav seen SA batsmen struggling to put bat to him..to give away only 2 runs in penultimate over in SA in tat series winning match was really incredible

  • jingopack on January 12, 2014, 21:10 GMT

    @Nampally...the bowlers you mentioned ...misras chawlas .. all belong to what geoff boycott says "dibbly dobbly" bowlers. all of them lack that X factor that champion bowlers like dale steyn or a warne or a murali has...mishras & chawlas were given chances...never there was a glimpse of tat special talent tat is required...remember how mishra was thrashed in tests in england.

  • DCricket on January 12, 2014, 21:02 GMT

    Its always baffling me that Dhoni has never admitted how bad we are in need of good bowling unit. India used to be having one of the best spinners on the world but not we are mediocre in that area as well. Fast bowling has always been our weak point and it still is. When we lose a game due to our bowling Dhoni is first to admit that we know our limitations and we did our best. Its like a one legged man running 100 meter race against Bolt and then loosing, then in press conference saying that I know my limitation and I did my best. Well you were in wrong competition. Thats the same thing what happens to us when we go out to play in England, Aus and South Africa. Recently in SA we were crushed. Still Dhoni thinks that we have a good unit. Good luck with that Mr. Dhoni. I think its time India starts nurturing another keeper and captain as dhoni is no good out side india, also he is weak caption in test cricket. So no need to take him to tours outside india anymore.

  • Greatest_Game on January 12, 2014, 21:01 GMT

    @ Harmony 111, referring to SA's ODI record, wrote "Come to think of it. SA can't score 180 runs in India's flat tracks ... but they score 300+ runs in SA."

    As usual, stats prove you completely wrong, & seemingly delusional if you believe what you wrote! SA played 23 ODIs in India & won 10, with 3 scores below 180, and 4 scores of 300 plus. India have 2 scores below 180, & 3 of 300+. SA HAS MORE 300+ SCORES IN INDIA, THAN IND HAS!!!

    In South Africa, Ind played 28 ODI matches, & won FIVE. Yes, won 5, lost 21. Sad. Even worse, Ind has NEVER scored 300+ in SA, but scored below 180 TEN times. SA has two 300+ scores, and 2 below 180 scores.

    SA has scored 300+ in India & SA MORE TIMES THAN IND HAS. SA has 3 scores below 180 in India, but Ind has 10 scores below 180 in SA.

    Overall, in ODIs SA has won 42 to India's 25 - W/L ratio 1.68. SA DOMINATE.

    How can you be so completely and utterly misinformed? Don't you check the stats BEFORE your daily mud slinging? Statsguru - try it. It works!!

  • SanjivAwesome on January 12, 2014, 20:57 GMT

    Despite Dhoni's bravado, history is against India achieving a winning result in NZ. Let me distinguish results from effort. The results in SA make for sorry reading for Team India - OneDays = Lost. Tests = Lost. Whereas the effort in SA makes for better reading. As a fan, I want to see effort translated into winning results in NZ. History is against that. I will post my observations as the NZ tour progresses.

  • spinkingKK on January 12, 2014, 20:40 GMT

    Dhoni said it right about why the likes of Australia and England are not criticized for not doing well in subcontinent. Anyway, talking about the New Zealand tour, I will be looking forward to the batting of Kohli and Rahane only. I am not all that convinced with the performance of others. You can easily ridicule me because Pujara has a truck load of runs and Vijay has scored well too. But, they seems to be very shaky when the bowlers really wanted to take a wicket. Only Kohli and Rahane are showing the quality to counter the pumped up bowlers.

  • Y2SJ on January 12, 2014, 20:31 GMT

    Let me check.. Lost series in England (at home and away), Australia and SA, and Dhoni says they are doing good everywhere? I dont think so. Against strong teams this team has done but losing.

  • Nampally on January 12, 2014, 19:38 GMT

    @Sir-Ivor: I entirely agree with you for running a coaching camp for the selected bowlers under a reputed coach who can train these guys to bowl at the right spots. As you rightly mentioned India has pace bowlers like Umesh Yadev & Aaron + others who can bowl consistently in 145 KPH range. But When these guys are adorning the bench & Dhoni crying out "we have no bowlers", what is your answer? Secondly, India should make it a standard Balanced Test XI, with 5 Batsmen + 5 Bowlers + WK. This eliminates Captain Dhoni from making his standard blunders of 4 Bowlers for Test matches. It also provides bowlers an equal status with batsmen. Above all India badly needs a visionary Test captain who is keenly interested in developing bowlers. I was shocked to see in SA second Test, India chose the same 3 "Tired" bowlers who played First test, when Yadev & B.Kumar had fresh legs! So India playing 5 day test with 3 "tired" bowlers out of Only 4 Bowlers, when fresh bowlers are on Bench - Justify that!

  • jimmyvida on January 12, 2014, 19:27 GMT

    Dhoni knows what he is talking about. Comments made by 'cricketfever' guy mirrors mine. Back in History. Do you know that G. Sobers was picked in place of Valentine, that great left arm spinner? Do you know that Kanhai was picked on that same tour of England. That team was murdered/humiliated. Sobers made around 200 runs in 10 innings. I said at the time that Sobers was too aggressive but he has class. The news media and cricket pundits could not stop denigrating the selectors for picking these young useless players. The selectors persisted. The rest is history. Trust in your selectors and captain. Your team did exceptionally well in SA. Be proud. Stop complaining..

  • Nampally on January 12, 2014, 19:05 GMT

    @Jingopack:India always produced world class Cricketers long before Tendulkar was even born. Batsmen Merchant, Hazare, Umrigar & bowlers like Phadkar, Mankad & Gupte are products of 1950's or earlier. India always have excellent talent in both batting & bowling. The trick is to find them & give them a chance to show their talent. There are at least a dozen bowlers in 135KPH range + an equal number of spinners. Mishra, Chawla & Sharma (leg spinners) adorned the bench for many games before being banished. For bowlers to develop there should be an incentive. When India plays with just 3 bowlers + 1 all rounder, as 4 bowlers in Tests, what incentive is there for a young guy to focus on Bowling rather than on Batting? Firstly ensure" 5 specialist bowlers" in Test XI. Next have a permanent coaching camp for training bowlers to bowl at the right spots under Best coaches. Do not select a squad where some bowlers are always on bench. BCCI, Indian Selectors & Captain need to get this message!

  • Iceman29 on January 12, 2014, 18:51 GMT

    @ Piyush Manocha: Ok buddy will give him some time as you say and see if there are any improvements....If Ind wins as you say I will never post anything against Dhoni...but I want to see your comments if our team continue to lose all the overseas tour..Peace

  • Cricfever_PM on January 12, 2014, 18:48 GMT

    @soumyas : Vijay have improved lot in Test cricket and the way he handled the Steyn & Co in SA test is really a master class and asking him drop is proving your sick mind!! He played in 1st three innings and faced most the New ball which reduced the pressure for Middle orders and he will do well in NZ too, Rohit has talent and you can't drop him as he will mature in future!! If you wanna drop, drop Dhawan if he will not do well in NZ as i think he is not Test material!!! This team need another 1 or 2 years to re build, so lets give these players most of chance and don't drop them in 1 or 2 matches as they will become great team in future!!!

  • jimmyvida on January 12, 2014, 18:32 GMT

    Have not seen Varun or Ishwar bowl so can't comment. I have seen Bhumi bowl. He is a class act. Most of the contributors keep picking on Ashwin and Rohit. These two gentlemen are very good batsmen. Dhawan failed in SA. So what? If he fails again in NZ, then you worry. So, the team recognized by contributors will/should be: Rayudu, Rishi, Anureet, Pankaj, Pujara, Kohli, Varun, Shami, Ishwar, Binny, Rahul and maybe Dhoni. WOW!

  • jingopack on January 12, 2014, 18:19 GMT

    i have watched cricket close to 17 years now... from one man army of sachin ..we have seen rise many world class batsmen who have played for india over the years...but still in search of that even one true world class bowler...a fast bowler or spinner...unfortunately not even one....anil kumble came close in later stages of his career as his performance was good even in away matches but still no one like a saeed ajmal or dale steyn

  • brusselslion on January 12, 2014, 18:14 GMT

    India has a potentially good young side and competed well in the 1st Test against SA. However, they were blown away in the 2nd Test and most of the team are untested in 1st class matches in either England or Australia. Therefore, it seems a bit premature for Dhoni to claim that ".. we have players who can do well anywhere".

  • vakkaraju on January 12, 2014, 18:09 GMT

    Our logic seems to be skewed. When Kohlia and Pujara score it is their brilliance. When the opposition scores it is our bad bowling. Recently the Australia's great fast bowlers were ripped apart too in India. It is international cricket and there are a lot of skillful players. The ability of the team to compete, and that this team has in plenty.

  • on January 12, 2014, 18:06 GMT

    Again team dhoni goinng to loose in NZ Tour...they can play only in India....

  • soumyas on January 12, 2014, 17:43 GMT

    They should drop Vijay from all formats and Rohit from Test cricket. Rahane should be a regular in all the forms, he can open the innings in tests with dhawan.

  • on January 12, 2014, 17:30 GMT

    The indian team suffer from attacking bowler who can maintain line and length in any given situation.The team had bleed ed over 300 runs in the ODI's played recently in India and South Africa and instead of blaming the changed field restriction rule, players like Ashwin,Ishant and Bhuneshwar are of no use and newcomers be tried in their place.We have to strengthen our domestic system by creating lively and green pitches to develop effective bowlers otherwise the future looks bleak.

  • on January 12, 2014, 17:29 GMT

    @iceman29 buddy I understand that performance hurts and even I had forgotten that we are current world champions, such was the jolt. But it's game! Dhoni has a weird approach to the game and I agree that it did not work recently especially in test cricket! But IMO no one else should be burdened with the test captaincy for such important tours and World Cup within an year span!! And I am being realist not an optimist when I say that Dhoni still has a lot to contribute and will do a job which will surprise you! Just next 14 months!! Every important tournament and series is scheduled within that span!! I would still trust Dhoni rather than someone like Kohli or some other youngster who is trying to attain next level of batting/bowling. A captaincy burden is not a good idea for their game for such important calendar year where every big trophy is at stake!! You have to trust Dhoni and he has done enough to deserve it!! Good luck to him and you!!

  • ABKhanISB on January 12, 2014, 17:22 GMT

    Yes India is a complete unit now only if a team could be complete unit with a very poor bowling power

  • RAKKKAAA on January 12, 2014, 17:11 GMT

    we just need to take saha instead of dhoni in test matches...den only india can win outside subcontinent...he izz wasting his energy by playing test cricket should concentrate on odis...

  • Iceman29 on January 12, 2014, 16:47 GMT

    @Piyush Manocha: Buddy may be you got used to the losing streak....still how many overseas test match loses do you require to come to the conclusion that Dhoni is not right for Test captaincy or for that matter he doesnt fit to play test matches???you have to wake up...

  • Iceman29 on January 12, 2014, 16:40 GMT

    @Piyush Manocha: I appreciate your optimism my friend but that doesnt gonna help us matches am afraid..First of all Dhoni is not a Test material, it may be hard to accept but that is the truth...he is marvellous in shorter formats of the game...but for test matches you need players with good technique and temperment..second as long as he is there Rohit sharma, Ishant Sharma and Ashwin will be there in Test matches and Dhoni itself is a walking wicket ...He has to give away the test captaincy for sure...Pointing other teams overseas performance when our team is pathetic is not the right answer isnt it...

  • Al_Bundy1 on January 12, 2014, 16:27 GMT

    Now we know we've got players who can do well anywhere' - Dhoni. Really?? Do you think you can win with bowlers like Ishant Sharma, Ashwin and 36 year old Zak?? Ashwin can't take wickets outside India's dust bowls, Ishant is clueless as ever, and Zak is getting old. Yadav has not control and Varun Aaron gets injured too easily. Shami alone can't take all the wickets. India needs fresh, young pace bowlers like Rishi Dhwan, Anureet Singh or Pankaj Singh, and hard working spinners like Parvez Rasool, Iqbal Abdulla or Ali Murtuza.

  • on January 12, 2014, 16:18 GMT

    @iceman29 And this NZ tour will be an ideal preparation for the big challenges of England and Australia to come and I assure you Dhoni's experience will be required in altering our past 0-8 score line ..if not 8-0, there will a series win somewhere!! As I said you need Ice!! Dhoni is the man who changed the loser attitude of Indian cricket! Not just a lucky chap!!

  • ThemanID on January 12, 2014, 16:17 GMT

    What rubbish. We are OK in batting. 2 out of 7 performing doesn't mean we can play anywhere. Rohit sharma is rubbish on any pitch outside India. Ms dhoni is a flop in tests, Dhawan is inconsistent, same as vijay. Only kohli and pujara are top class. Rahane you can't tell after 2 matches which he did actually play well. And let's not talk about our bowling

  • on January 12, 2014, 16:15 GMT

    @iceman29 do not discredit a man who is India's most successful captain in any form of the game and arguably one of the best captains in the world! Do not, not so easily!! Put some ice on!! Now on to overseas 0-9, 8 of the test matches were played with the old horses who were unwilling to hang their boots and could not provide India the requisite 400 plus score to win a test match either in Aus or Eng! Our bowling was never so great even when we challenged them during the last decade, it was our batting a effort and occasional good spell of newbie bowler like irfan!ishant, yeah same ishant and the most underrated great kumble if India! Now coming to last two outings against the best test team in the world!! We batted well like the last decade and challenged them, even shocked them with their resolve! Ya the bowling magic did not happen,,.bur trust me it will begin from NZ! Somebody like Varun/shami/Ishwar will prove a point and get you your 20 wickets on seem friendly NZ pitches! Ice!

  • on January 12, 2014, 16:01 GMT

    On Irfan Pathan:

    Getting tired of reading about the advocacy of Irfan Pathan. I used to be a fan of Irfan Pathan. But no more. Not only, he gets injured so often, but also declining rapidly both in bowling & batting. He is no more an automatic choice even for Baroda.

    I wish people should figure our about a players CURRENT condition, before taking up his case.

    On Rishi Dhawan:

    Yes, I do understand , all the pleadings to try out Rishi Dhawan. On the basis of the form in two consecutive domestic games, and the one going on now, he looks the best bet, to be developed into the missing link in the team: A Fast(?) Bowling All Rounder!

  • TimeKiller on January 12, 2014, 15:59 GMT

    Settled? do well anywhere? come on...they are far from it. Some of the top Ranji teams can defeat this Indian Test team if a 5-day match is played on a sporting track either in India or abroad.

  • AvidCricFan on January 12, 2014, 15:54 GMT

    It is ok to back players who show signs of improvements and have right skills. In the case if players like Ishant Sharma, that is not true. He has been around over 5 years and doesn't show any improvements. In fact, he has deteriorated from the start of his career. Even players like Rohit Sharma needs a closure look on their skills to perform in overseas conditions.

  • on January 12, 2014, 15:38 GMT

    Well India do have a settled look when it comes to Batting but I seriously hope Dhoni isnt talking about the bowling as it toothless at the moment and the decisions being made are horrendous. Umesh Yadav and Varun Aron the only genuine speedsters are not backed as they leak runs but they give you wickets and that is what you need atleast in tests. India should back all the allrounders in Rishi, Binny, Irfan Pathan and to an extent Parvez Rasool. Groom bowlers like Umesh, Varun, Ishwar, Pankaj, Shukla, Kaul and many more lost in the domestic just because they leak runs but these guys will give you wickets and that is how matches are won. Also have DK and Saha on A tours and put them on the radar. In tests better play Jaddu or Rasool instead of Ashwin abroad as all 3 are allrounders and the former 2 are better bowlers than Aswin is abroad.In the named bowlers - Umesh and Varun are fast, Ishwar and Pankaj are tall and the others including the allrounders are seamers. BCCI MUST CONSIDER!

  • on January 12, 2014, 15:24 GMT

    why dhoni is giving chances to suresh raina, Aswin ....team selection is total under dhoni control we know how he clears the seniors now he was enjoying with juniors . why dhoni giving presser to yuvi and gambir ...with the selection committee and dhoni our india clean sweep in sA . with the help of seniors we got world cup and T20 world cup.

  • GRVJPR on January 12, 2014, 15:14 GMT

    even though captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni does not quite carry the god-like status of Tendulkar, his influence on Indian cricket is arguably greater as he became the first player to captain India in 50 tests and has almost broken the mould of 'longevity and Indian cricket.

    Dhoni, who is seemingly unaffected by media demands and expectation, has led India in 26 of their 34 ODIs last year, of which they won 22, along with eight Tests and has also not wearied by the pressure of crouching behind the stumps.

    Although India does not have the big batting names of past visits, but the likes of Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina and Dhoni would not need a second chance to threaten 400 if the pitches are docile and the bowling a touch wayward.

  • balajik2505 on January 12, 2014, 15:10 GMT

    The batting looks OK. Even if one or two fail, there are people waiting. It is the bowling which is worrying. Indian domestic cricket has a tendency to destroy its quicker bowlers. Very few have survived to make a mark.

  • Anil_Koshy on January 12, 2014, 14:40 GMT

    India will never win in New Zealand, if they play Ashwin as a main bowler, he can at max be an all rounder, he can play in place of Rohit Sharma, who is not doing anything to justify his place in the side, Dhawan should be given more chance. Apart from Shami, there is no other bowler in the side who looks like taking wickets.

  • on January 12, 2014, 14:28 GMT

    Zaheer couldn't even trouble Maharashtra batsmen on a green Mumbai pitch. NZ batsmen are certainly better than Maharashtra batsmen. Starting with Zaheer is effectively equal to starting with 3.5 bowlers and if there are no early wickets, it becomes 3.25 bowlers. Ishwar Pandey is fresh. Ishant, Ishwar, Shami and Jadeja should be our best bet. Dhoni might even be tempted to play Aaron in place of Rohit Sharma given the strength of batting to give us best chance to take 20 wickets

  • on January 12, 2014, 14:12 GMT

    How will his team take 20 wickets to win test matches outside subcontinent ?

  • on January 12, 2014, 14:10 GMT

    Hope they do well. I think India will be playing all there matches in aus for the world cup but nevertheless it should still be a good contest.

  • Iceman29 on January 12, 2014, 14:07 GMT

    The first reaction of me seeing this topic in cricinfo made me laugh like hell...We are no where near settled Mr.Dhoni..for God's sake you are still picking Ishant sharma dn Ashwin as your main bowlers that tell you lot about our options...There are some serious Allrounders and bowlers in our country yet the selectors keep on ignoring our bowling departments failures..Only God can Save Ind team...NZ is going to beat the pulp out of us this time...

  • Iceman29 on January 12, 2014, 14:00 GMT

    Settled?? Are you kidding Mr. Dhoni...We are 9-0 in away test record and yet to win a test match...whitewashed in ODI series in SA..Dont have a proper seam nor a spin bowler who can take 20 wickets in test matches and you are saying this is a settled Unit...Now I know the reason why Indian team is not able to perform abroad..it is because of this guy new bowlers or batsmen with talent are not selected...and he call this a settled team.....And he talks about other teams away record...Pathetic.

  • Allanwilliams23 on January 12, 2014, 14:00 GMT

    We have a very good Batting line up Dhoni should bat up @ 5 , our bowling Sami , Yadav , Aaron , Ashvin , Jadeja , Ashwin for the ODI"s

    Test Zack, Shami , Yadav, Aaron , Ashvin or Jadeja this should be for overseas where the ball swings & bounce

    we have to give them a chance to perform I think Inshant has had his days have to encourage New Young fast bowlers.

  • anupamraj114 on January 12, 2014, 13:59 GMT

    Every test playing nation barring SA is king in home conditions and beggar outside. Why are we thinking that Indians only have a poor record. We are a young team and signs from sa tour are really encouraging. Lets hope for the best.

  • sharma987 on January 12, 2014, 13:39 GMT

    Well india will perform in nz........bowling line up looks varied but of course not settled.....bt shud have given chance to fresh talents for 2015 wc........why are they ignoring all rounders like rasool,shukla,bowlers .

  • army7782 on January 12, 2014, 13:36 GMT

    problems with our indian pacers.......bhuvneshwar,lacks pace....mohit sharma,lacks pace and also line and length....yadav,lacks accuracy........mr.ishant sharma,lacks....lacks everything!!!!!

  • AamirKhan-SuperStar on January 12, 2014, 13:27 GMT

    On the basis of rankings these two teams don't match well but put in NZ conditions and both look equals. While there is a growing batting talent on one hand on the other there is a very impressiv upcoming pace attack. One dayers may produce mouth watering contests given the strengths of these sides, In tests it may well be another learning curve for Indian youngsters while it will test the skills of the home team as well given the lack of competition they faced from Windies. Overall its gonna be one hell of a tour from cricketing point of view. All the best men in blue.

  • on January 12, 2014, 12:41 GMT

    There is NO WAY India will win in New Zealand. They are not able to take 20 wickets in a series never mind a match. secondly they wont be helped by the pitches like they were in South Africa, and the ball swings like crazy in NZL. When last could any Indian face proper swinging conditions

  • on January 12, 2014, 12:37 GMT

    India lol. Despite indian conditions in SA. India still lost pretty bad in ODI and Test series. What's settled about that??

  • Jaga2011 on January 12, 2014, 12:19 GMT

    @Rakesh Roshan...My friend, your point is taken. But can someone demonstrate the value of Dhoni's batting and captaincy in Test matches? Why not try a bowler captain in the form of Zaheer Khan for a Test team with a 5-bowler lineup? The approach may be completely different.Let him bowl just 15 overs in a inning, that may even be enough!

    Dhoni is increasingly looking tired these days, why not divide his workload - let him do ODI's where he is king - batting, keeping and captaincy. Let someone else take a shot at Test matches.

    To those here saying that all teams are losing away from home, so it's okay for india too to be like that, that sounds like asking fans to settle for being mediocre, like the old days of indian cricket!

    The teams with Tend, Laxman,Dravid, Gang, Harbhajan, Kumble etc won several tests in Aus and Eng. A proud record which should not be destroyed!

  • on January 12, 2014, 12:10 GMT

    Flat wicket and small grounds in India are hampering the growth of our cricketers. It is sad to watch cricketers like Rohit Sharma struggle in South Africa, who just recently made double hundred in a one-day match against Australia at Bangalore. In my opinion, scoring 50 runs in Perth wicket is equal to scoring 200 in a flat Bangalore wicket.

  • armchairjohnny on January 12, 2014, 11:32 GMT

    Even with a decent batting line-up, every ardent test lover knows that it's bowlers who win matches and series. The Indian 'bowling' is virtually non-existent. Even in areas where the nation was once traditionally strong (Spin bowling) there is very little promise in terms of test-class. I have seen associate sides (Afghanistan, UAE, Italy) with more potent bowling attacks than this India side!

    Dhoni is in dream land if he thinks this team will be able to cope overseas. Sure enough, the young batsmen have shown some promise in South Africa but unless they are given a bowling attack capable of dishing out the same level of venom as the opposition, then even the confidence of the batsmen will no doubt vanish as well. Dhoni himself is a weak link in this team and the selectors really need to ponder over his test future. A technically adept player like Karthik could do wonders in test cricket if only he were given a chance. Dhoni is a lion in colored clothing, but a sheep in whites.

  • on January 12, 2014, 11:26 GMT

    I read so much about the need for a seam bowling allrounder but I aam left to wonder why Lakshmi Ratan shukla never comes to the equation he has this year singelhandedly taken Bengal to the semus. Mach winning innings in at least 5 occastions ciming after top order collapse in green tops anad one square turner.He is also an outstanding fielder. his bowling also breaks partnerships and he can bowl long spells.

  • indianpunter on January 12, 2014, 10:54 GMT

    I must have been watching a different series ! India have now lost 9/10 overseas tests ( really should have been a perfect 10!) and the captain calls the team settled ! delusions of grandeur, Mr MSD! The continued presence of Ishant sharma in both test and ODI teams is a slap in the face of the indian cricket fan.

  • Capricorn60 on January 12, 2014, 10:53 GMT

    Although our batting looks good and the ones who didn't do well in SA should be given more opportunities - particularly in playing overseas - our pace bowling is still very weak as we saw in SA. In the 1st Test, we almost lost defending a 450+ total & in the 2nd one, MSD showed a total lack of confidence in his pace attack by not taking the new ball on the 4th day - which is why we ended up losing the Test & the series. So MSD may say these things now but even we Indian fans are not stupid in believing all of it! We desperately need to find some good young fast bowlers & to give the likes of Yadav, Aaron etc more chances rather than continually picking perennial failures like Ishant!

  • on January 12, 2014, 10:32 GMT

    You can't be serious! The mighty bowlers couldn't win the first test with 450 to play with. If they didn't lost the test, it was because SA could not hit the final nail. The brave batsmen folded up in the second test and the mighty bowlers bowled all day.

    What are you talking about?

  • on January 12, 2014, 10:30 GMT

    India do have a fast bowling all rounder option in Irfan Pathan. Yes he is past his prime and has lost the pace he once had but he can still swing the ball and can score some handy runs. He has shown it in the IPL where he has scored quick runs and maintained pressure with accuracy and swing. Better management and he could be an all rounder option for India for the next 2-3 years at least

  • cricpanther on January 12, 2014, 10:27 GMT

    Very important series going to start against NZ. We all knew that 2015 world cup is also playing on NZ and Aus. So the experience of these pitch and conditions can certainly test India better here and NZ team in big time form and spirit is up, so it will be more difficult tour than SA. Give MSD last chance for his own and team performances, if India losses badly here then straight away call for bigger and bolder changes, certainly MSD should step down from captaincy. Look at yuvi has few bad innings, and MSD has thrown him out even though he was man of the series for 2011 world cup and Match winner for India that time. So why captain gets extra chances..even though Dhoni completely fail to deliver himself and on team.....Who is He?? Enough Dhoni....

  • AltafPatel on January 12, 2014, 9:53 GMT

    India could hardly first test in SA with negative bowling in last stage. Second test they lost by 10 wickets. Still ignore the facts and shows over positives. Could have more acceptance like their bowlers failed and batsmen could not perform under pressure.

  • on January 12, 2014, 9:39 GMT

    As everyone here as suddenly become either the national selector, coach or the greatest analyst of the game, let me add my 2 cents here:

    1) people asking for Gambhir; the whole point of developing a younger team was to look past the older players and honestly, the years have caught up with him and that little bunt shot he tries to play to third man. The openers faired okay in SA, Vijay left the ball well and wore down the shine, and Dhawan, just give him some time to start performing overseas.

    2) people talking about his comment about India's recent performances overseas: have you looked at the stats for touring teams? In 2013, there were very few victories away from home, which I think was only Pakistan winning in Zimbwabwe. No team does well away from home; before the "heroics" of Australia winning 5-0 at home, they lost 7-0, if I'm not mistaken, away from home.

    Back your team just like how a captain has to back his players even if it seems a ridiculous selection to you.

  • MichaelBurton on January 12, 2014, 9:32 GMT

    We definitely be a settled unit until the next match...pathetic.

  • mathewjohn2176 on January 12, 2014, 9:24 GMT

    Posted by ICCexpert.... on (January 12, 2014, 8:55 GMT), you have a short term memory loss ,Gajini.Under dhoni captaincy, india won the first test series win in NZ 2009 .@ Harmony 111 , This Indian team is relatively a new team and as always everyone wants them to win the series at the word GO which our previous Indian team of fab 5 failed to do so.Now all are after dhoni, mainly they are the fans of dropped players and ex cricketers.So nothing surprises there that they want to see dhoni out of this Indian team.They all want sehwag captain, Gambhir captain or even zaheer khan as captain but forgot that we don't have good fast bowlers to take 20 wickets.Now everyone wants kohli to be captain this Indian team, but inside you have to feel for kohli as well in the future, these same Indian fans will be after his head.Its sad to be an Indian cricket player nowadays.@ GRVJPR, well said.we need to wait for this team to play outside subcontinent and get experience .We should judge later on.

  • TruthWarrior on January 12, 2014, 9:24 GMT

    ..experience allows you ample diplomatic answers, M Dhoni the reality is India is no more settled than they were when their recent flat track bullies, Sewag,Ghambir,Dravid,Tendulkar & Yuvi were playing. It is the results that confirm how settled a team is, over the last many years, apart from Champions trophy, what is there to prove India is now a settled team? recent tour of SA, check the ODIs, i think it was a whitewash & the test matches where India could not bowl the opposition out for 500! & lost the 2nd test in a typical Indian fashion....

  • IndianInnerEdge on January 12, 2014, 9:12 GMT

    Well...he has to say something and sound confident...what do u expect...him saying "we are here for the scenery, and hope our boys will not get toasted in every match they play?".....It is all good sounding confident, giving the sound bites, the reality is does India have the bowling to take 20 wickets in all conditions? The answer is a resounding NO. Our pace attack is pathetic, spinners struggle outside india, and if u throw in a 4 bowler, 6 batsman policy, those 4 bowlers will be totally drained come th third test of the series - eg durban test which was back to back from joberg test. The biggest solution is HIRE Craig McDermott as our bowling coach. Look at the results he has given to the OZ team, he practices the virtues of pitching it on a length, further up and taking wickets. Ishant, umesh, kumar will be wasted for lack of guidance, IShant is just cannon fodder nowadays, the less said the better about Zak who should hopefully play his last tes. Please CCCI hire Craig MCDermott!

  • mahi_b on January 12, 2014, 8:59 GMT

    I don't agree this. Our players are (like Rohit, dhawan, vijay, bhuvi, ishant) need to learn more to play outside asia pitch. In ODI, it is better to give chance to Robin Uthappa or Samson instead of rohit sharma as opening batsmen. Rayudu, Binny and I Pandey should get chance in playing XI.

  • ICCexpert.... on January 12, 2014, 8:55 GMT

    Dhoni has short term memory loss, Ghajini. He has not won a single test series outside India and is saying they can play anywhere. Did you forget the white wash is Australia, England. And the recent loss in SA ? Be ready for NZ now.

  • on January 12, 2014, 8:53 GMT

    Dear Jaga2011. did you really said that team should be led by Zaheer for now... are you serious??? I mean you want a captain, who himself is not a permanent member of playing 11 (fitness issue). Going by performance also, his and Ishant days are gone. See their performance 3/4 years back and see them now toiling so hard to beat the batsman once. After Bhuvi, Aaron, Umesh, Shami, I do not think to go back to Zaheer, unless you want to bowl him 10 overs and seat rest of the match in the pavilion, I am a great fan of Zaheer, but you got to understand that he is done. Do not want to get a position of playing 11 wasted..... For the moment Dhoni has got no replacement.

  • MichaelBurton on January 12, 2014, 8:28 GMT

    "I think this is a tagline which has been associated with us and you guys [media] just love to say it". We have been given this tagline on poor overseas record for a reason. What we have to do is to get rid of this, not to blame the media and others. This shows inherent weaknessess of Dhoni. For gods sake, you step down Dhoni and give the capataincy to Kholi.

  • on January 12, 2014, 8:27 GMT

    yeah. anywhere except in South Africa, Australia and England.

  • Harmony111 on January 12, 2014, 8:26 GMT

    @GRVJPR:

    Anything related to India, be it Sachin or Dhoni or Kohli or Dhawan or India's stand against DRS is criticized cos it is about India. You would never hear anyone saying that Cook can't play short ball but Dhawan & Rohit, who are like 4-5 tests old, they are supposed to steamroll Steyn etc and if they fail then they are obviously FTBs. These ppl will never praise India, just accept this.

    @din7:

    You are obviously not an Ind cos there is no way an Ind fan would be that pessimistic to say that Ind would never win a series in SA or Aus. Since you fool no one in your attempt to sound like an Ind fan here so you better stop using this 'us' thing in your comments.

    Had Kallis not been given out in the 1st Test, SA would have never got that close to the target. Playing a few 4s here & there does not mean Kallis would have continued at that pace considering his career SR and the way in which he got his final 100 at the royal SR of 36. So SA were actually helped there.

  • Sir_Ivor on January 12, 2014, 8:25 GMT

    I said earlier that the Indian bowling needs to be addressed and it has to be done with urgency. The first thing that should be done is to have a bowling coach who is understood by the bowlers and who himself was a good exponent himself. Sahun Pollock,Fanie De Villiers and Alan Donald are suggested names. If McDermott is free he could also be very good.Those that have been with the IPL teams look settled and should be preferred. The fast bowling is what needs special attention immediately.Shami, Yadav,Aaron Ishant and Bhuvi need to be fine tuned in regard to bowling the slower balls the yorkers and the leg cutters. The others who come to my mind from what we have been seeing in the domestic games are Sardul Thakur,H S Sharath Sandip Warrier,Rakesh Shukla,VRV Singh and MS Gony. The ideaa is to have bowlers who lookto have the potential. Akshay Patel,Shreyas Gopal and Parvez Rasool could become good spinners with brushing up.If a pool is built up all the formats could be catered for.

  • on January 12, 2014, 8:16 GMT

    I wouldn't be so complacent about NZ. Trent Boult and Tim Southee form a menacing new-ball attack, and batsmen like Williamson, Taylor and Anderson have the skills to take a game away from you. I do think India will perform well in NZ, but New Zealand could surprise.

  • Rajeshj on January 12, 2014, 8:15 GMT

    Strange that Dhoni says Jadeja's performance was good.. Jadeja took 5 wickets when the opposition scored 600 runs and few of his wickets were gifts from batsmen.. Even part-timers from SA took 6 wickets in that match.. Looks like Dhoni is hell-bent in promoting Jadeja, in spite of common knowledge that he is an average spinner...

  • bumsteer on January 12, 2014, 7:59 GMT

    Same old, same old.......Unless there is a mindset change India will still be an also ran. How about some attacking captaincy??

  • Jaga2011 on January 12, 2014, 7:51 GMT

    IMO, Based on performances, Dhoni has lost the right to be either part of the Test team or captain of it. The captain is certainly a mentor for the junior team-members but cannot exclusively be only a management guru of the team; It could perhaps be acceptable for the coach to be like that, only giving 'gyaan' to everyone around, but not the captain.

    My 2 cents: Dhoni should be dropped from Test and T20 teams. Test team should be led by Zaheer for now with Saha/Dinesh Karthik keeping. T20 team should be led by Kohli with Saha/Dinesh Karthik keeping.

    Dhoni is definitely great in the ODI format and he surely as the right to captain that team by way of performance.

  • RyanHarrisGreatCricketer on January 12, 2014, 7:44 GMT

    Dhoni says its better for everyone to leave together for an overseas series, so it was a good decision to skip Ranji quarters.

    But, if my emory serves me right, all the players did not leave together for the tour of Australia in 2011-12. What happened then? Oh right, some of them were busy playing an ODI series against West Indies, at home. How sweet!

  • drpramit on January 12, 2014, 7:25 GMT

    Every captain has some favorites, so has Dhoni. guys like raina & yuvi have done well in the past thats why they were given chance in SA. Raina will be dropped very soon if he failed to perform in Nzl. Ii do agree with the point on fast bowling all rounder, we dont have any bowler who can really bat well. Jadeja is doing a good job with the ball but he hasnt performed with bat. Similarly Raina can bowl few overs here & there & good thing is that all of them field well. Pujara & Rahane are good batsmen but they are not all rounders, this has been another reason for not picking them quite often in ODIs. Now coming to Nzl tour, India definitely needs 4 fast bowlers & 1 spin combination, now we all know how poor our bowlers are so we have to stay with this combination

  • sergio11 on January 12, 2014, 7:19 GMT

    @@@Mahi Bal......Rohit Sharma cannt face new ball??? in Champions thropy and WI tour after that he batted in real testing condtn..with two new ball it wasnt easy...and he did really well..in both tour..he is technically very correct..and the perfect guy to do that job..see of the new ball...yes in SA he got beaten by steyn plenty of times..in the first odi..if u can notice..he was standing more leg stump in first odi..and was pokng at balls out side off..hence got beatn..bt he adjusted that in 2nd odi and in test..was attackng the ballng..was tryng to move to off stump...see..its nt easy to make even a smal adjustmnt in a span of 2 days...unfortunatly he didnt get many runs..bt dnt jz write of that guy yet...

  • ithed00fus on January 12, 2014, 7:14 GMT

    I'll cover up for dhoni here... "Now we know we've got players who can do well anywhere....... In India" and players imply only and only those two in the picture. One of them, albeit being talented, is capable of losing his head as frequently as he recalls everyone's mum and sister.

  • Jaga2011 on January 12, 2014, 7:13 GMT

    "We don't play with five specialist bowlers:.. And Mr.MSD, can you please tell us why we cannot play with 5 specalist bowlers?

  • on January 12, 2014, 7:05 GMT

    I can't believe people are still talking about Rohit's place in the team after just one bad series ...He had one runout, one rank bad decesion and two jaffer of deliveries to make his four dismissals ......!!

    Rohit, Ajinkya, Pujara and Kohli are India's future. Add Shikhar and you have a potent plan for many years to come. If someone needs to step away from the test side it's Dhoni himself. He's a poor test batsman, average wkeeper and below average test skipper. Dinesh Karthick hould be brought in immediately, with Robin Utthappa as his backup keeper.

  • sergio11 on January 12, 2014, 7:03 GMT

    @bhushanB....bro Raina won us the ODI series against ENG single handly wen last time dey tourd india...dnt be so cruel :P how many teams hav won a series bcoz of the batting by a number 6 batmens?? dat boy has got talent..yes he is having prob against short ball...bt nt just him...except Rohit,Virat and Dhoni no1 play pul and hock dat well...bt he s jz 26..let him work on his games..Rohit just scored 1200+ odi runs his year and he dnt have any prob wth pace n bounce..he did really well in 2007 CB series against AUS whch was his debut series...its jz one tour..he will come gud in NZ..Ojha is nt as gud as jadeja..having played al his game in india stil to avg abve 30+ is nt a gud record..keep in mind harbajan avg only 32 in oversea test alne...if he is nt "exceptional" in indian conditions..he cannnt never be lethal away frm home..

  • devil_in_details on January 12, 2014, 6:56 GMT

    Just to reemphasise my earlier point, we have the raw material to be a superb team with a very good bowling attack but we MUST have a bowling coach. The pacers have potential but their fitness needs to be monitored and they should be told what lengths to bowl as per the situation- yorkers, bouncers on the body whatever may be suitable. Look at the impact of Australia's bowling coach on both the home whitewashes they have achieved against India and England. He has converted a bunch of bowlers with potential, into a lethal attack. On the other hand when he was not there the Aussie bowlers performance was ordinary. We need that Craig Mcdermott kind of coach and BCCI with its enormous money can hire the best. THEN we would be a truly settled and great side in all forms of the game.

  • on January 12, 2014, 6:25 GMT

    Many players lik ojha,yuvi,Gambir nd karthik axed, young upcoming players lik Parvez Rasool nd sanju samson not selected becas of our captain favourism, Why not he not used pujaara fr onedays against NZ, why dhoni repeatedly selecting Ishanth,Raina,Ashwin nd Jadeja despite many failures in onedays, Rohith sharma cant bat as a opener in one days becas his inability to face new ball ..

  • on January 12, 2014, 6:22 GMT

    Lot of people commenting about India not wining in SA and AUS, well both places have been a nightmare for visiting teams and especially for subcontinental teams. But if talk about Aus, we have come close on winning a series at least thrice but circumstances denied us, 1977. 2-3 loss. Score line says it, 2004, 1-1 draw with Buckner not willing to give LBs, 2008 seemed like a ACB controversy with host of harsh decisions against India, Symonds stumping on TV example, still we won in Perth and scoreline 1-2. Now SA has not been around only since 1992, while we have played test with Aussies since 48. I guess the underline reason has always been an absence if a lethal fast bowler like Mitch who can wrap up teams overseas BUT times change and may in 2014 by the end of England your we will have the right resources to go dine under and thrash the Aussies. That is like a Varun Aaron and Ishwar Pandeys revelations!! We will beat Australia and SA in Their backyards within this decade, I AM SURE

  • on January 12, 2014, 6:09 GMT

    Yes Mr Dhoni, I believe you. After all, you manage to draw a test which you were suppose to win, and lost a match you were suppose to draw. How nice! But your fans are not delusional. We want RESULTS!!!

  • Giant-Guru on January 12, 2014, 6:07 GMT

    Well NZ is not as good a team as SA, pitches may not be slow but their bowlers are not as deadly as the SA's - so a big relief for players like Rohit Sharma, Dhawan and more importantly Dhoni himself. MS can now play his helicopter shot and not take new ball for 150+ overs. But what about our bowlers, new additions to the team are good, but these young bowlers need to perform, Varun is good but with poor fitness, can't say anything about Ishwar Pandey but in any case they would be better than Ishant

    The strength of India's attack in the past has been its spin bowling, but looking at R. Ashwin (who hardly spins) I wonder why is he on the team other than "Super Kings" factor. Well selectors need to break the shackles and stop looking at the past performances (few years ago) in deciding the present/future selections, like in the case of R. Ashwin. India should seriously think of having a specialist spinner like Hafeez of Pk. Jadeja needs to do more with the bat to find a spot in the team

  • SLslider on January 12, 2014, 5:59 GMT

    @ VKholi_theGreat What are you talking about? Dhoni is the best captain in the world with the bowling attack he has most of the time, he can not win matches abroad and can only go for draws. But he still always plays the game with the spirit. He never tries to slow the game so opposition doesn't get full overs. I wish we had a captain like him. Dhoni never asked any Indian spinner to bowl a no ball so a century can be denied to a batsman.

    He wins trophies for India. He has won all the ICC tournaments outside India as well. We are yet to win a single one. We infact have not won a single test match in AUS and IND. Our record is the worst. Look at our bowling attack, out of four frontline bowlers 2 average more than steyn. Pathetic.

  • mahi678 on January 12, 2014, 5:57 GMT

    'Now we know we've got players who can do well anywhere' - Dhoni- words by good tactician to protect himself from pressure. selectors should decide not dhoni. i would say victories over the years due to quality of players not dhoni himself. dhoni won champions trophy because of bhuvi and world cup because of yuvi(home advantage for yuvi). now both are disregrded by dhoni. bhuvi is good bowler but lacks confidence from captain. ishanth got hell lot of confidence from large array of failures.... ha ha. great leader dhoni.

  • bhushanB on January 12, 2014, 5:55 GMT

    @muthukumar.velusamy

    Totally agree with you.... by favoring his buddies.. Dhoni definitely destroyed the careers of several young and aspiring talents.....

    Some are favored...persisted with after several failures and are on the verge of playing 100 ODIs and/or 50 Tests, with nothing significant to show for.. some are buried even after being a man of the series, or a man of the match with a 10 for or a ODI hundred etc....

    Pujara, Rahane, Ojha, Bhuvi, Umesh should find their truly deserved spots in the team.... Rohit, Raina, Ishant should look back their 6+ years of career and contemplate if they truly deserve their places..... I will have to wait a little longer to comment on Ashwin, Jadeja's place in the test X1... especially outside India... because so far they've played on spinner paradise pitches...

  • fairfan70 on January 12, 2014, 5:53 GMT

    Wrong, Mr. Dhoni. Only the batting has come back up to the desired levels with the retirement of faded stars (thankfully there is even more talent waiting in the pipeline, so no worries on the batting front). However, beyond the batting, the team has no top class allrounder yet, wicket keeping is weak (yourself) and the bowling is just ordinary (they can do well only in helpful conditions). We still need top class spinners and pace bowlers who can consistently bowl at 140+ with decent line and length. Unfortunately, in the current test side three of the 4 pacers like to bowl at 125 to 130 kmph so they can complete their quota of 7 or 8 overs before catching a breath.

  • devil_in_details on January 12, 2014, 5:46 GMT

    Would like to disagree with Dhoni here. In one dayers we need replacements for Yuvi and Raina- Rahane and Pujara/Rayadu seem the obvious candidates. In one day bowling only Shami and Jadeja seem to be certain. Ashwin is innocuous on pitches which dont give him assistance therefore it is crucial that we develop a medium pacer all rounder. After that we will need two pacers more - Zaheer maybe and one more. In test matches, batting is settled but Dhawan, Rohit and Dhoni need to really learn fast which they have the ability to do. In test bowling, Jadeja has done well so needs to be given an extended run now. We need one fast bowler to accompany Zak and Shammi- most likely develop a group of promising pacers like Yadav, Aaron, Bhuvi, Pankaj and its here we desperately need a good bowling coach. Finally Jadeja shud be for now, considered purely as a bowler but if he can contribute 30-40 runs consistently with the bat, well that would be a huge bonus.

  • LongLiveTestCricket on January 12, 2014, 5:45 GMT

    Except that you have a poor bowling unit and by retaining poor performers as Ishant and Ashwin, you are blocking the career progression of much more deserving candidates. By giving this explanation again and again that our bowlers have bowled well when there is help from the conditions but ZERO when there's no help, does not cap much ice. Even in the SL-Pak series, some inexperienced pacers shown great maturity and discipline and bowled with a lot of purpose to get batsmen out on really flat wickets.Particularly SL pacers who are not in the same class as Pak pacers, have shown a lot of promise which is heartening for test cricket, thanks to Vaas.A lot of Indian pacers would do well to watch the series for consistent line and length bowling with very few bad balls bowled. It is shocking to see Indian bowlers spray the ball in 6 different areas in one over in Test matches, with no consistent lines or lengths. Clearly they need a lot of work with bowling coach.

  • GRVJPR on January 12, 2014, 5:45 GMT

    India need to get rid off Zaheer Khan as soon as possible and invest in Umesh Yadav. It seems to be going the same way as old batsmen. We dragged oldies for too long. JUst like young batsmen have adjusted, have faith in young bowlers as well.

  • crikhardcore on January 12, 2014, 5:43 GMT

    So Dhoni saying that he doesn't have seamers who come in and hit the pitch hard,well look no further than Umesh Yadav.He could have made a real difference on that last day in Joburg.Hope Dhoni finally gives him a chance in the NZ tests at the expense of his beloved Ishant.Zak, Shami and Umesh could form a very potent seam trio who all have different traits.The guile and skill of Zaheer,movement and control of Shami along with the pace of Umesh.I just don't see what Ishant brings to the table other than being a containing bowler at best wih those very rare moments of brilliance like in the first innings at Joburg.Bring in Umesh and i'm sure this attack will get that much reqired venom.

  • SLslider on January 12, 2014, 5:41 GMT

    Its completely outrageous to call India bad travellers. Our SL team is yet to win a single test match in AUS and even in IND. We don't have 10% of batting talent what India has. If a player like Mahela is a legend in a team who wouldn't find a place in Bangladesh team then what can we expect.

    Reason could be that India is expected to do well and are heavyweight team but our SL team is a mid level team. ICC rankings never lie. We can see which team is where in the rankings. India has always supported teams like SL whenever we have been facing financial issues. Though India always thrash SL everywhere.

  • Alexk400 on January 12, 2014, 5:35 GMT

    Dhoni is great captain in india even without steyn & co. But he will be great captain overseas also if he have bowling resources of high caliber. Same thing you can say that with any good captain. Dhoni is really average when his team do not have resources. He do not bring the best out of players in overseas tour because of his negative tactics. He is awful contributor in overseas matches

  • Ramesh_Joseph on January 12, 2014, 5:32 GMT

    India has a settled batting side. Cant say the same about the bowlers. India in test matches just cant afford to play both Ishant and Zaheer Khan. Between the two of them, they are equal to one bowler. I hope Dhoni sees the error of his ways and plays Yadav in the Tests and 'rest' Ishant Sharma, who must be the worst bowler in the world to have played more than 50 tests. Ishwar Pandey too should be given a chance. But knowing Dhoni, this is not likely as he has some set favorites. The only hope is that Ishant bowls so badly in the ODIs that Dhoni would be forced to drop him for the tests.

  • MichaelBurton on January 12, 2014, 5:28 GMT

    "I think this is a tagline which has been associated with us and you guys [media] just love to say it". We have been given this tagline on poor overseas record for a reason. What we have to do is to get rid of this, not to blame the media and others. This shows inherent weaknessess of Dhoni. For gods sake, you step down Dhoni and give the capataincy to Kholi.

  • din7 on January 12, 2014, 5:25 GMT

    HAHAHAH yes we do have a settled unit thanks to indian conditions in S...what will they do in aus 4-0! despite indian conditions we didnt win a single match in SA.we played ok in SA..but sayin india have settled unit..let them beat NA first who arent goin to be pushovers! @harmony111..steyn got lucky with kohli? didnt india got lucky with kallis wicket in 1st test..shldn't i say then SA would have won that match if that wrong decision was not given? stop cryin..ur cryin wont help india win anywhere..truth is we nevr won a series in SA, Aus and never will! Let them keep their record of winnin in NZ which looks difficut considerin how nz play at home! CRY OUT LOUD MATE!

  • muthukumar.velusamy on January 12, 2014, 5:17 GMT

    Some times Dhoni's Insticts become problem for players who is not in his good book. We seen in the past players like Tiwari, Badrinath, Amit misra fading from International Scene as he never backed their talent.Players Like Rohit sharma, Ishant sharma, Flat Pitch batsman Suresh Raina are persisted even with little success as Dhoni Backs them. I fear the same may happen to Pujara in ODI format.Inspite of Success in Tests at SA, he was not selected. If not now tat too in overseas condition wen Pujara going to play ODI.As a Die-hard cricketing fan of Indian team, followers like me wants an answer.Although Dhoni may be one of the finest captain Indian must had. But Need to accept Many players Lost their International career because of him. Even Poor Rahane waited for Years for his chances , but fortunately he grapped his cvhance at SA.if not hwe would been dropped for NZ series.

  • GRVJPR on January 12, 2014, 5:17 GMT

    India lost the second test because of poor umpiring and nothing else. Umpired gifted out best batsmen wicket to toothless dale steyn who earlier resigned to his fate in the test when started bowling round the wicket defensive lines to run off the park. ust imagine if one decision had gone India's way in first test at Johannesberg on final day. Indian would have dominated, in fact the did most days.

  • on January 12, 2014, 5:16 GMT

    i think,dhoni shoud out of team,his performance is so bad,total match...SEHWAG is super as comapred to Dhoni.He should play ranji trophy not Sehwag.i dont like dhonis batting.his batting style is bad as like a boatman.

  • rsr89 on January 12, 2014, 5:14 GMT

    What most "expert/analysts" are forgeting here is - India have never been good overseas tourist even when they had FAB5 and Kumble, Harbhajan, Srinath et al. However, the new lot of Indian cricketer are good enough and confident to do well than their older greats and that's Dhoni meant presumeably, which is accurate considering inexperienced side. Also people claiming Dhawan and Rohit failing in SA mustn't forget that they were playing their first series overseas so give them chance before shooting 'em off.

  • GRVJPR on January 12, 2014, 5:13 GMT

    @Harmony111, Spot on mate. Few people here see only negative things or try to project something negative about Indian always. I think there is problem with their mindset. One fellow commented that Virat Kohli shouldn't have waited for umpire to give him out LBW. That's the most SILLY thing I have ever listened to.

  • Harmony111 on January 12, 2014, 5:08 GMT

    Greatest_Game:

    Howsoever loud you may be about India's failure in SA recently, nothing really come remotely close to the monumental failures SA have had in ODIs. Losing a bilateral series when you had no time to prepare is not all that a shocker really. The real shocker is when a team routinely fails to score even 200 runs on wickets that have been labelled as Flat Tracks and where other teams score 300 runs while still snoozing & where others chase even 350+.

    Your team manages to win a few matches here & there but when it is crunch time, they collapse & become soggy like a biscuit dipped in tea.

    Come to think of it. SA can't score 180 runs in India's flat tracks AND SA can't score 180 runs in England but they score 300+ runs in SA.

    Who is the Home Bully then huh? The moment they step out, they are exposed even on the flat tracks of India. It must be the ultimate insult for a team not to be able to score even 200 runs in those dead wickets. Come here when you can do that.

  • Percy_Fender on January 12, 2014, 5:04 GMT

    I feel the Indian team is an impressive work in progress. It was feared that after the retirement of the famous five India would struggle. That has been allayed to a great extent already. Their batting is almost ready with a mix of robust and flair. They need to make some changes though which could make further changes not needed for some time to come. K L Rahul is the opening batsman who has the technique, temperament and strokeplay to be the kind of opener India has not had after Sunil Gavaskar had made such a big impact in world cricket. The fact that Rahul does well in adverse conditions and on sporting wickets makes him a precious asset.Along with Rahane, he could forge a great combination. Both of them have the Dravid influence. With Pujara and Kohli well settled they should look to bring in Zol and the batting is settled. Samson could be the wk. Bhuvi,Yadav,Aaron Jadeja and Ashwin would be the bowlers to choose from for the present.The bowling will have to be addressed soon.

  • on January 12, 2014, 5:03 GMT

    for people who are backing ishant saying that he l prosper overseas plz have a look at his stats and then talk- he s played more tests abroad than in India and the biggest joke is that he has a better average in India! so much for all your 'hit the deck hard' and 'put it in the right areas' theory! if a pace bowler can't prosper abroad after having an experience of 25+ tests then how on earth is he being hailed a special talent?!! at least are we trying to improve the bowlers who have pace? no! umesh and Aaron will never get the right guidance so that they can stay injury free and bowl well in tests(ya limit their IPL schedule).... also dhawan rohit and dhoni hardly lasted a session each in the last series; imagine pujara and kohli getting out with the score on say 100-120... will dhoni and co. be able to push that score to 270-300? in my opinion only pujara kohli rahane vijay and shami have earned their places for the NZ series

  • on January 12, 2014, 5:03 GMT

    It has ti be agreed that this is a relatively new side. Just recall list of players who retired in the recent past. ST, RD, VVS -all these were the backbone of the Indian batting and they were playing regularly together for at least last 12 years or more. No one has doubt about India's batting ability. Need to improve the bowling and this is the best chance for Aaron, and yadhav to prove themselves. Gambhir should have been recalled. He is the best test opener available in India at the moment. Let us see hos long can Murali Vijay survive.

  • GRVJPR on January 12, 2014, 5:02 GMT

    DHoni is a very good captain because I have never seen him cry about lack of bowling resources (like Michael Clarke before ashes), wickets not suiting him (like Grame SMith in recesnt test series), like Alistar Cook (about lack of preparation). He always tries to get best out of very small resources he has got. Give him Steyn, Morkel, Johnson and he will show you how good a captain he is.

  • GRVJPR on January 12, 2014, 4:59 GMT

    India took least time to put up a decent team after the retirement of greats. Out transition period is shortest compared to Australia, West Indies etc. England will take another 7 years and South AFrica after steyn will be an ordinary team.

  • Naeem578 on January 12, 2014, 4:57 GMT

    Although ind has done well in S.A but the bitter fact is that they were not able to win a single game there. So on that basis it is too early to say that they have a settled unit for overseas. But again this is what indian cricket is all about, always over hyped n exagerated thinking. I think with that kind of bowling attack they will also face problems in N.Z ODIs. Although N.Z is way below in icc rankings but sure that they will give realy tough time to ind. Will be an interesting watch.

  • optimiser on January 12, 2014, 4:56 GMT

    Dhoni is a very defensive captain. How on earth can his thoughts dont carry criticism at all?

  • on January 12, 2014, 4:56 GMT

    where is gautam gambhir?

  • GRVJPR on January 12, 2014, 4:54 GMT

    Dhoni is right, but people don't want to agree with him. This is because few people in India thinks if they don't agree with DHONI they will be called great cricket experts. But realty is that DHONI is right. He has seen the potential in younger lot and knows that with experience and exposure they are on the verge of making a really good side. Great Cricket Analyst's (who disagreee with dhoni) can continue to play their CRY BABY GAME.

  • on January 12, 2014, 4:52 GMT

    Yes, we are shacking in our boots here in New Zealand about the prospect of playing India, especially how last time India thrashed us at home. Please take it easy on our team, most of them are very young and have so much to learn. Its going to be so much harder now that India has all their quick bowlers back and they should be able bowl us out twice in a day.

    Also January and February the weather is a lot more settled here, so I expect India to be making 800+ when they bat.

    We have no players in the IPL because they are not good enough and could you guys while you are here help our young spinners to teach them how to bowl at your batsmen out.

  • YesKayR on January 12, 2014, 4:49 GMT

    Are we being too critical of Dhoni's batting abilities. I feel we infact are comparing Dhoni's ability to Dhoni's ability itself. Just check backwards and see how many Indian wicket keepers have a better batting average than him or kept wkts as consistently like him. To list a few prominent names - Kirmani, More and Mongia. Others did not even perform well on home soil and faded off. True that Dhoni does not have a test hundred abroad. He still has seventies, eighties and nineties. ( a ninety in his previous SA tour 2010-11). He should be considered equivalent to a Kapil Dev type. Apart from one hundred in WI Kapil dev has no hndreds outside subconti. Dhoni has never boasted that he has is the best technically equipped batsman in the Indian team. In fact he has scored 30s and 20s consistently abroad which our so called specialist batsman have failed to. Even Wridhiman Saha, Parthiv patel who scores consistently in domestic have been total failures in tests even at home.

  • on January 12, 2014, 4:48 GMT

    ha ha ha what can we say about dhonis chamatkar.,he is going on doing that chamatkar from england to SA but he never accepts his weekness as a a captain in abroad.. now a days he is very insecured about his captaincy.. so he is firing all of his senior opponents like viru, gauti, unfortunately yuvi..but he cant take action on kholi. if he do so that will be a suicide for him. sanju samson is hunting him . if dhoni looses his cap he will be out of team as well. he knows that very well and fighting for captaincy.definatly he should take responsibility for those losses. instead of doing that he is trying to divert the things. by giving these kind of non sence .what is he trying to say that " i will do wonders with this team please dont take off my captaincy" hmmm it is tough to beat even bangladesh in their home nothing great winning matches in india. calling weaker oponents and winning here and feeling iam the greatest man ever made by god. inisa success in rec

  • GRVJPR on January 12, 2014, 4:44 GMT

    It looks as if DHONI won't give chance to Stuart Binny. Many people wanted Rish Dhwan but you need to look at batting position. I think at 7 Binny is a better bat becuase of his style of play. Good hitter is what needed mos times at 7 or in ODI cricket. Rishi dhawan is a steady player but if 30 is needed of last 3 overs, BINNY is the MEN to do it.

  • on January 12, 2014, 4:41 GMT

    "we know weve got players who can do well anywhere" .. in conditions ordered and approved by the BCCI for Indian player comfort and success.

  • ZkAneela on January 12, 2014, 4:34 GMT

    Completely overrated comment by dhoni.If bowlers can't take 10 wickets for 458 runs on Jo'burg wicket on the last day of a test match where the the ball is keeping low and bouncing acquardly how mr.dhoni is giving a statement of settled team.Infact ur bowlers were on the verge of loosing that test match.Even bangladesh or zimbabwe will get those 10 SA wickets.Think a bit before you speak sometihing dude...

  • S.Seshachalam on January 12, 2014, 4:33 GMT

    What is Dhoni talking? How can he claim a settled unit with Zak & Ishant in the team?!! Also Ashwin always falters very badly overseas ....Hight time selectors look for suitable repalcements for Zaheer and Ishant and also unearth a couple of good spinners who can perform overseas. What happened to Parvez Rasool who did not even get a single chance in Zimbabwe and then conveniently forgotten?!! It is high time to get rid of regional & IPL politics and select the best 11 for Team India if we have to witness consistent good performance. Hope atleast the present selection committee rises to the occasion.

  • GRVJPR on January 12, 2014, 4:12 GMT

    The problem in India is that most people wants instant results. It always take time to build up a good team. India is on the right path. We have identified good batsmen and now we can focus on bowlers. People stop bashing Jadeja. He is no liability infact his bowling and fielding is outstanding in every condition. That's 2 out of 3 departments. His batting fails because of his batting positions. Most times he's batting when only 3 to 4 overs are left and that too with taileneders. Only once in 30 matches he finds himself with good number of overs available, but then the team is in trouble with 6 wickets down and tailenders alongside him. Given a chance to bat up the order he will do well there as well. What else do you want form 1 men. Why others like Rohit SHarma don;t stand up and be counted.

  • on January 12, 2014, 3:57 GMT

    Dhoni is blabbering! He doesn't know how to end a game. Already started talking of smaller grounds in NZ. He is a non-performer in tests, dropped some crucial catches compounded by his poor batting skills. Hope the selectors are watching!

  • karthikrby on January 12, 2014, 3:55 GMT

    to wolf777, india non performers outside? Who won CL in England? We won T20 WC in SA. Aus miserably failed in india, england beaten in Aus now. All the team have their own problems as none got settled. We have a bunch under 25 who really performed well in SA tests. Show me a team with 6 to 7 people under 25 who can really perform well outside their home conditions?

    PAK? LOL AUS? LOL again, When watson/clarke/Johnson out, Aus will look like zimbawe England? LOLLLLLLLLL SA? Apart from ABD/Quinton ded cock, not seeing any prospect, When steyn/morkel is out, again a much waited zimbawe

    To me apart from india, NZ is only team have some good youngsters who may turn to great players. Same on other countries.

  • on January 12, 2014, 3:41 GMT

    binny deserve a chance

  • on January 12, 2014, 3:38 GMT

    i think sturt binny is also seamer all rounder it deserve to chance

  • bhushanB on January 12, 2014, 3:36 GMT

    Talent to perform in one format, then you can do well in others...

    TRUE if you are talking TESTS --> ODI --> T20

    If you think the other way is also true, you are the most idiotic person on the earth.... If that is true, then people like Yusuf Pathan, Raina, Yuvi, Dhoni will be stalwarts of Indian TEST team

  • bhushanB on January 12, 2014, 3:34 GMT

    Who will do well.... so a 0-3 in ODI and 0-1 in the tests... is a great showing? how worse can it be..... 0-3, 0-2?

  • bhushanB on January 12, 2014, 3:33 GMT

    Just because you got your buddies into the team.. does not make the side settled... win a overseas series or two.. before calling it a settled side.....

    Other than Pujara, Kohli no one else is settled in the team

  • bhushanB on January 12, 2014, 3:32 GMT

    Settled unit.... so IND settled for another 0-9 score in the next 10 away tests?

  • on January 12, 2014, 3:10 GMT

    I am a bit shocked with Dhoni's comments. Exept for Murali Vijay, Pujara, Kohli and Rahane- all other positions are up for grabs with no real competent staking a strong claim on these 7 vacant slots. Sikhar-- need to improve on his temperament, Ashwin and Jadeja- should show that they are good outside also. Shami need to be tested more. That's it. we can talk about 8 guys and from where you are getting another 5 to 6 players. Wicket keeper-- Dinesh karthik, Gambhir-- in place of Rohit Sarma. Bhuvi can be another contender. Find a good captian also.

  • on January 12, 2014, 3:07 GMT

    Settled team? I haven't seen anything that shows india is a settled team now.

  • ThilankaK on January 12, 2014, 3:07 GMT

    AWAIT with head to head comparison !!

  • ThilankaK on January 12, 2014, 3:04 GMT

    This time also same story like what happened in SA !!

  • on January 12, 2014, 2:59 GMT

    Our batting is settled & promising, but the bowling is not by any means. In SA, we did not show the ability to take 20 wickets, even when defending 458 in the fourth innings of a Test match. Unless that changes, this team will find it very difficult to win abroad.

  • on January 12, 2014, 2:59 GMT

    Dhoni is the only player after sachin in india has more fans... And there are many haters for him also.. I feel ashamed about it.. India really played well in tests vs SA. Our bowling led us to defeat in 2nd test and draw in 1st test.. Wat is the use even u cant defend 458.. Zak bowls very slow below 130's even though he is fit.. Its tym to replace zak with umesh yadav and ishanth with varun aaron ... U need bowlers to take 20 wickets and i feel we dont have that.... Dhoni must have a look at Zaheer..

  • SydneyIndi on January 12, 2014, 2:32 GMT

    Dhoni is partly right in saying we have a settled unit. Good ones are Vijay, Pujara, Kohli, Rahane, Shami and Yadav. Others like Dhavan, Rohit and Jadeja have talent but yet prove O/S. The worrying fact is we are carrying O/S non performers Dhoni, Zak and Ishant. As for Dhoni, he is a champ ODI and T20 player but he has shown that his technique is no good in Tests especially O/S. When was the last time he scored a 50 or 100 O/S? with so many O/S tours he has undertaken? He is no Gilly or a Sanga in Tests. Truth is we can win under any captain (even a donkey) @ home (see histoy) bcos we have enormous talent pool for home conditions. As for Zak & Ishant, their labouring run up and slow bowling doesn't linspire and hasn't been successful recently. Time to change & not waste Yadav and the like. Fast bowlers like him should not be given confusing messages; keep it simple, ask him to aim at offstump and bowl fast/full with frequent deliveries to the chin, or something simple like that.

  • anupkeni on January 12, 2014, 2:24 GMT

    Indian bowling attack is like cannon fodder for the opposition batsmen even on bowling friendly pitches outside the subcontinent. Zaheer Khan struggling to pick up wickets even in the Ranji Trophy is simply pathetic. And Zaheer is supposed to be the spearhead of the Indian bowling attack!!! Ishant Sharma has also got too many opportunities but has hardly any performance to boast of. Mohammed Shami is the only promising fast bowler that Team India has at the moment. Even among the spinners, Ravichandran Ashwin is pretty barren while playing overseas. Even in batting players like Shikhar Dhawan , Rohit Sharma and even captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni are like walking wickets while playing overseas. Only players like Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane have shown promise while playing overseas. Under such circumstances, one has to wonder how Dhoni can call Team India a settled unit especially while playing overseas.

  • Lamp on January 12, 2014, 2:23 GMT

    Yes, with the likes of players like Rohit Sharma Dhoni and Ashwin, India can do well in tests outside the sub-continent too.

  • captaincool on January 12, 2014, 2:22 GMT

    " but if you have the talent to perform in one format, definitely you have the talent to perform in others too." What happens to Dhoni in Tests then? We certainly know he is one of the finest in ODI.

  • on January 12, 2014, 2:19 GMT

    Perhaps the batting unit is settled.. The bowling unit is as unsettled as it has ever been.. Zak and Ishant must not be selected in the future tours.. Ashwin is not the best spinner in the country.. In this form, he can be selected ahead of Rohit Sharma is the 6th batsman in the team for overseas tests though.. Amit Mishra and Umesh Yadav need to play every test match from now on.. With Shami and Bhuvi, they are the most genuine match winners as bowlers in the Indian team.. Rishi Dhawan needs to prove himself for at least another season before he is blooded in..

  • cheatsdontprosper on January 12, 2014, 2:19 GMT

    Seriously One OK 2 game Test series vs South Africa and MSD says India can play away from home ! this maybe One Overrated Comment by a Good Captain, it is also WAY to soon to start making Outrageous statements just for the SAKE OF IT. The main problem i see is as always is India's bowling unit which has not changed for the better for years Ishant is too old as is Zaheer, why not bring in the youngsters as India have done in there batting lineup ? it is about time Yadav got a FIRM place in the side by stepping up his game, MSD is guilty of not giving the young pacers a proper chance at proving themselves as they need to do especially before going to Australia again. We all remember the last series was AWFUL a Whitewash in Australia and the Uk. If i was MSD i would keep SILLY comments like this too himself and continue to Improve the Pace attack and all round game plan.

  • on January 12, 2014, 2:11 GMT

    Settled team? is he joking or what? never saw such statements before the SA series.. any team can beat NZ, even Bangladesh thrashed them and keeps thrashing them. a good series for India to win and tell that their overseas record has improved and hide the defeat of SA series.

  • sixesandfours on January 12, 2014, 2:00 GMT

    Its time for India to find all rounders and enough is enough on mediocre spinners like Ashwin on oversees tours. I think ODI team selection is good and Dhoni should look forward to give opportunities for new comers and prepare a good team for ODI worldcup in NZ/AUS next year. Keep Raina as part time off spinner and Give Binny and Jadeja as all-rounders to the team. Team for First ODI should be - 1. Shikhar 2. Rohit 3. Virat 4. Rahane 5. Raina 6. Dhoni 7. Binny 8. Jadeja 9. BKumar 10. Shami 11. Sharma/Ishwar Pandey/Varun Aaron. Best Wishes to India on their Oversees trip tours.

  • on January 12, 2014, 2:00 GMT

    @ satish dhoni is not a chracter who leads by example in test cricket.... I dont consider him as best captain ever born.... Dont forget captains like imran khan, steve waugh, stephen fleming, clive lloyd

  • on January 12, 2014, 1:56 GMT

    If you have settled team then show how To win overseas....

  • Greatest_Game on January 12, 2014, 1:53 GMT

    @ CricketChat writes "They are definitely a competitive side on ODIs."

    In the SC - yes. In SA - no. They were taken apart and exposed in ODIs in SA. Only rain spared them the full whitewash. They were not even close to competitive. They were absolutely, completely and utterly thrashed - a hiding of monumental proportions. India could not bat out 50 overs!! All out for 217 & 146. Fate spared them a 3rd innings. Maybe they would have joined the under 50 club?

    Take a look at the Indian ODI stats here: http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/records/averages/batting_bowling_by_team.html?id=8269;team=6;type=series

    Only Dhoni acquitted himself. Jadega has the 2nd best batting average, though with the ball he averaged 139! The heroic, mustache twirling Dhawan averaged 6. Rahane 8. Kholi 15.5. Rohit, the double centurion hero, floundered with 18.5.

    India were proved to be ODI home bullies. New Zealand have every chance of taking them apart in tests and ODIs. They probably will.

  • amitgarg78 on January 12, 2014, 1:49 GMT

    Not with Raina and ishant in team. Raina is a walking wicket in newzealand. Ishant fails to take wickets or control run rate anywhere. Need some one else to step up and replace these.

  • YesKayR on January 12, 2014, 1:48 GMT

    While highlighting team's positives, it is certainly required to look at team's weaknesses which we have in plenty. We have no quality spinners. Sparing Mohammed Shami, our pace attack is mediocre. Jadeja's 3 triple hundreds in Ranji is no use, if he continues scoring single digit scores in internationals. Gambhir can be bought in for Dhawan. Get in Ojha or Amit Mishra for Ashwin. It is not they are the best in the world- just that they are better than ashwin. Yadav, Shami And Zaheer can be our pace attack - Here also we seem to have no other option. Our pace bowlers lack pace, accuracy, skills and lacks that killer instinct to run thru the opposition.. more often than not we let off opposition after taking a few quick wickets. Has been like that even during Kapils' time. Selectors seem to get quickly impressed with pacers like Mohit Sharma, Goni, Vineet Kumar and so on, who all at their best cannot even scare a FLY with their pace. Wishing Team India all the best for NZ tour.

  • on January 12, 2014, 1:41 GMT

    Dhoni knows what he is doing so please let see what he bring out in newzeland

  • Greatest_Game on January 12, 2014, 1:37 GMT

    @ Asif Hussain wrote "i agree....every day of sa test was competitive...unlike the previous foreign tours.....aur and eng specially…"

    Every day??? Not likely. Have you forgot tong how after day 1 in Durban the SA attack simply slaughtered the Indian batsmen? Only Rahane had any answer in India's 2nd innings. You might enjoy revising history. It might make you feel good. It will always be a load of rubbish. What is done, is done. Be honest about it. India had TWO MAJOR batting collapses: 5 for 16 and 5 for 14. Fortunes waxed and waned. That is reality. Try to recognize it!

  • TheBigBoodha on January 12, 2014, 1:35 GMT

    Dhoni knows full well that India have had Avery lucky run with "foreign conditions" of late. The SA' put down dry flat tracks for the first time in living memory. I'm sure Dhoni also knows what went on behind the scenes to create this dramatic change of policy by the SA board. The CT tracks in England were also inexplicably dry, slow, flat and grassless. I won't even begin to imagine why that policy shift occurred by the CT admin people.

    At any rat Aus will provide standard conditions when India tour - bad news for Dhoni and co. Dhoni averages 18 in tests in AUS, and that isn't going to change at his age.

  • baba6660 on January 12, 2014, 1:35 GMT

    Dhoni needs to realize that the current team is still work in progress as far as playing on bouncy tracks such as Australia & South Africa. Imagine India playing a three test series (let alone five tests) in Australia. Excepting Kohli & Pujara and to some extent Rahane we do not have players with the technique, grit & determination to stay in the middle and play quality fast bowling. Shikhar is unable to curb the tendency to cut & hook the rising deliveries despite the knowledge that he is unable to control the shot. We need to find solid openers who can play rising deliveries and provide solid foundation for Test Matches. As far as the bowling department is concerned, we must find couple more Shammi's and a quality spinner. Ashwin is unable to perform outside the sub-continent and Ojha & Mishra do not seem to have the confidence of their captain. If Jadeja is considered an allrounder, he needs to show greater responsibility in shot selection.

  • Greatest_Game on January 12, 2014, 1:32 GMT

    @ Thomas Cherian wrote "Kohli Pujara and Rahane that is it every other slot including Dhonis is weak and floundering . As for bowling only shami as for sharma less said the better."

    Your analysis is right on the money, and a very fair assessment of India's strengths. Always encouraging to see sensible voices in these conversations.

  • Greatest_Game on January 12, 2014, 1:19 GMT

    "According to the Dhoni, the first one, to South Africa, proved that the team had players who could perform in all conditions."

    The ODIs were played on SA wickets, with bounce & movement. Indian bowling was looted, the batting slaughtered. The World Champion & #1 Ranked team was dismembered, their batting superstars exposed as incompetent against bounce & movement. Thisis true "PROOF" that they have "players who (can not) perform in all conditions." Nice try MS, but that horse has already bolted.

    The test pitches were mysteriously sub-continental. In Test 1 the SA attack was poor. Steyn had his worst ever test. Morkel was nagging, conceded only 1.47 per over, but could only bowl in the 1st inns. Philander adapted & found ways to make the track work. Ultimately, Ind came within 8 runs of losing.

    In Test 2 SA's attack performed, & India were rolled over.

    In SC conditions Ind could not win. You call THAT performing? Pujara, Rahane, Kohli & Shami performed. The rest were hopeless.

  • CherryWood_Champion on January 12, 2014, 0:57 GMT

    First of Dhoni does not deserve a place in playing test X1 in any of the overseas test matches in Aus / SA / Eng / NZ. Rayudu should double up as a Wicket Keeper and a specialist batsman. Jadeja should start contribute in terms of runs also. And Indian team needs five bowlers to win matches in these countries. Dhawan deserves another chance. If he does fail Rohit should be tried as an opener. Pandey should be given a chance in the 2nd test by dropping non-performing bowler from first test. My Test XI would be 1)Dhawan 2)Vijay 3)Pujara 4)Kohli (Capt) 5)Rahane 6)Rayudu(WK) 7)Jadeja 8)Zaheer 9)Shami 10) Umesh Yadav 11) Varun/Pandey

    For ODIs/T-20s .. Dhoni is an automatic choice. My ODI/T-20 XI would be 1)Dhawan 2)Rohit 3)Kohli 4)Rahane 5)Rayudu/Raina 6)Dhoni(Capt & WK) 7)Binny 8)Jadeja 9)Bhuvaneshwar 10)Shami 11)Umesh Yadav/Ishwar Pandey

    The biggest lame duck selection for me is Saha. Poor chap he is being taken only to warm the benches and is the only one sure of not playing. sigh ~~

  • Shongololo on January 12, 2014, 0:45 GMT

    Dhoni would do well to concede that in South Africa, he got pitches he and his players could only dream of...and still ended up losing. So much for performing away. The Test track at The Wanderers was not your traditional Wanderers surface while at Kingsmead in Durban, India got a wicket more akin to conditions back home. I somehow doubt the New Zealanders will be as generous.

  • teo. on January 12, 2014, 0:31 GMT

    Sorry MSD, as seen by your teams performance in SA, your team could not even take 20wickets in a test, both tests... Only 27 or 28 versus 40 from SA. Even on a slow wicket in Durban tailor made for India, your bowling unit struggled. Your batsmen can score 900/0....but you still need wickets mate. Maybe one day......

  • on January 12, 2014, 0:24 GMT

    Team India shouldn't more depend on their batsman only to win overseas tests. As 20 wickets are to be taken in bouncy and seaming wicket like New Zealand, the batsmen should be praised if they gather 550-600 runs together in 2 innings, so the rest responsibilities should go with the bowlers whether they can mange the total enough to role. No other way. And Dhoni as a pioneer has slight to do more in making century in abroad. Cool Dhoni might be aggressive from the beginning of his Innings 2-3 good timing definitely shows him to way to reach hundred (shorter boundary in New-zealand). Thick edges might advances you !

  • Nampally on January 12, 2014, 0:13 GMT

    The real reason for India's resurgence was inclusion of guys like Pujara & Rahane- the very same guys benched by Dhoni. India needed players who are disciplined, patient & have correct technique to cope with pace & bounce. Kohli, Pujara & Rahane + Vijay led the way. Rest of the batsmen are still failing including MSD. However the biggest issue is the bowling - the number of bowlers & right names. Aaron & Yadev are the fastest & likely to succeed at their pace. Shami is the third seamer with will & determination. Ishwar pandey has been added to the list & is considered to be >135 KPH too. Use these guys + do not ever play a Test match with 4 Bowlers - EVER AGAIN! India has bowling if only they are coached & used properly with right field setting. A fast bowler needs a deep third man & a deep long leg at all times. Ishant bowled to Smith with no deep third man & the first ball was cut for 4. Field setting needs to be well thought & logical. Dhoni needs to observe these basic rules!

  • sergio11 on January 12, 2014, 0:10 GMT

    @Madan Shivakumar...mate jadeja hs played only handful of test matchs so dont judge his abilities with bat yet by seeng dose..because of his action and accuracy he doesnt need a durban pitch to succed..and considering the fact that kiwi batmen doesnt play spin well..watz the point of dropping him?? ashwin right is nt dat gud to bat at number 7 at overseas..may be in india..in oversea top 6 must be pure batmen and dhoni at 7..den if u hav got at jaddu at 8...datz a huge advantage..hw dhoni taking care of jaddu is the ryt way to do it..let him contribute with bolw and nt put pressure on him to score runs,with more and more games he wil only improve with the bat..else ul see another agarkar...thats the way to the do it mate..:)

  • correctcall on January 12, 2014, 0:06 GMT

    Don't be fooled by the un characteristic wickets you got to play on in SA Dhoni. NZ, Eng and Aus will not bow to BCCI pressure to reduce the pace and bounce as the Saffers did. Time for you to practice on some Indian pitches with zip. You can still have your dustbowls for home test advantage but surely the BCCI brains trusts can see this would be an advantageous strategy in properly preparing India for overseas tours

  • on January 11, 2014, 23:33 GMT

    I am not sure why they are hailing india's performance in S.A. they were comprehensively beaten in all series.

  • TommytuckerSaffa on January 11, 2014, 23:23 GMT

    Indians burying their heads in the sand again. Dhoni is not Test match material overseas - how many more examples do we need. Great for ODIs and T20.

  • on January 11, 2014, 23:11 GMT

    Big joke..can't win a series overseas n got brutally humiliated in eng,aus,odi in SA n 1 Gud test ..u think our team got settled ..dhoni himself doesn't perform Gud in overseas ...actually he never perform 1s a while luck goes with him n he takes all the credit..He thinks he his giving chance to other batsmen to perform at top order n he comes 4 or 5th down n makes few scores ..really bad ..as a experienced batsmen he should come up the order like 2nd down n build Gud platform for other batsmen bt he never does....this team gonna b out in early stages in coming World Cup (2015)..he should stop playing politics in selecting players who he like ..sewagh,gambhir n yuvi deserve place n they r far better than current batsmen..Indian selectors destroyed irfan Pathan as he was Gud all rounder..our bowlers r worst of all teams..DHONI sucks big time n doesn't deserve playing in tests ..sewagh gambhir n yuvi should b in tests...Srinivasan should b kicked out of BCCI...Kapil dev should b inn..!

  • TommytuckerSaffa on January 11, 2014, 22:54 GMT

    Very weak test captain. Proven time and time again overseas.

  • on January 11, 2014, 22:24 GMT

    Is Dhoni talking about the recent performances in Test series in South Africa, prior to that in Australia and England? Keeping in view the performance of the Test team and drubbing in the hand of Auatralia and England, Dhoni should not claim such type of accolades. People of Cricket loving India very well know, what is Dhoni capable for and he is absolutely a total failure as far Indian Test Cricket performance in overseas is concerned.So his Test team is no way better than any other past Indian team as far as touring overseas and keeping India's hope in Test Cricket as esceptional(except Test Team under the leadership of Sourav Ganguly , who had shown some calibre and guts to beat other test playing nations in their home soil).

  • anumadhu on January 11, 2014, 22:23 GMT

    Dhoni comments are disrespectful to senior cricketers who felt they should have played in Ranji. Ranji is and should be considered a prime tournament. He is not performing well in the tests and should get some experience from playing in Ranji. Most of England and Australian players do play in their domestic tournaments regularly. I can not remember the last time Dhoni played in any domestic tournaments.

  • on January 11, 2014, 22:07 GMT

    Hah...just got drubbed vs south africa in odis and tests !! No way its a settled unit yet !

  • MasterClass on January 11, 2014, 21:38 GMT

    Not having DRS works against Shami because he is the bowler most likely to get batters out LBW since he swings the ball both way at speed, and also reverse swings which tend to get batsmen falling over. I'm convinced with DRS India would have won in SA.

  • gauravm5 on January 11, 2014, 21:27 GMT

    The most unsettled player in Indian TEST team is himself MS Dhoni. There is no doubt that Dhoni along with AB De Villiers, Amla, Bailey and Virat is one of the best ODI batsmen in the world but his test batting outside subcontinent is not so good, not even acceptable. Even Ashwin is better than Dhoni in tests outside subcontinent...........

  • cricpanther on January 11, 2014, 21:24 GMT

    Omg why dhoni speaks out these days very much ? you can see him on the field talking too much behind the wicket to his bowlers (show offs) and out the field also speaking too much. Is he feels insecure? absolutely YES. Mr. Dhoni please dont worry about team and speak for yourself..your performance and your settlement in team as you need to perform and win matches from here or else leave the team asap as world cup is starting soon next year!!!!!!

  • priceless1 on January 11, 2014, 21:23 GMT

    settled unit only on flat tracks , they were not even competitive in the last ODI' series in SA

  • on January 11, 2014, 20:57 GMT

    what? come again dhoni. did you mean anywhere in india? because we haven't forgotten the odi series bashing, a drawn test tht shud have been won n a comprehensive second defeat in the second test. we also did not forget wat happened when india toured aus n england last time. you shud make this comment wen this team performs well all over. not jus in india. had a gud laugh at ur comment though.

  • TSJ07 on January 11, 2014, 20:55 GMT

    Again too much talking by the captain.No bowler has permanent place in this Indian team and few batsmen like Dhawan,Rohit have yet to prove themselves in the longer run.Kohli,Pujara will be playing for India fo very long and Vijay,Rahane seem to be on right path but heck even captain is not certain to play in tests if selectors are honest about it.Next few months will prove that overseas he is big big failure and we are going to face this embarrassment for next few months.

  • sembiyan on January 11, 2014, 20:49 GMT

    This is not a good way to present in headlines stating that dohni feels ( like you have some other better thoughts) , in the article Dhoni words follwed by his name, finally in first line Dhoni belives!!!. Feels ? Belives ? or just conveying his message ??

  • on January 11, 2014, 20:48 GMT

    ashwin can not bowl well in overseas..thats for sure..he can't be uarbhajan or kumble...coz he is in team coz of dhoni as a captain of csk..grow up dhoni plz...as well as indiam team selecter...there are so many options u got in india..atleast trt them....good luck....

  • heartbreakerz on January 11, 2014, 20:42 GMT

    india have lost 9 out of their last 10 overseas tests n dhoni is blaming the media...lol

  • TRAM on January 11, 2014, 20:38 GMT

    yearright .... Ishant and Zaheer have taken several 5 wkt hauls recently and hence are a settled bowling attack. If there are no 2 players by name Pujara and Kholi this team is will be crushed by any team.

  • on January 11, 2014, 20:22 GMT

    i respect MSD for his work as leader n captain of Indian side but as cricket lover i think Dhoni is playing smart here as both the tests in SA were played on low bounce wickets with respect to what SA pitches offer in recent times. he is right that pitches were dry but they also had an almost same type of bounce on offer which is much in favor of Asains teams. also i feel Dhoni should use Jaddu as an allrounder as his first class batting Avg. is 50 which shows he can bat long also by doing this he can play an extra bowler to take 20 wickets. with playing only 7 batsmen including himself its hard on ZK n M Shami to do the job in NZ. bcos they ll prepare seaming wickets for sure as they cant bat against spinners of this quality plus they ve got better pace attack with two bowling allrounders which favors them to go with the bounce. MSD should start thinking abt taking 20 wickets in test rather than making pacers toil hard where they can take wickets in two pairs with good effect.

  • East_West on January 11, 2014, 20:19 GMT

    what Dhoni really means is ...."Now we know we've got players who can do well anywhere in INDIA":)

  • Savvy-Cricket-Analyst on January 11, 2014, 20:14 GMT

    After India's loss of Irfan Pathan, the team was never able to get a genuine fast-bowling all-rounder. And this is the biggest cause of India continuing to remain unimpressive on pitches abroad. Stuart Binny is just a 'bits-and-pieces' player, like Robin Singh of yesteryears. He himself has confirmed that he is no-good for test matches and hence has concentrated only on limited overs cricket. Against quality teams, his batting was always a disaster (as proved by his performances in India A). He bowls gentle medium pace, like Sourav Ganguly or Mohinder Amarnath. How is he going to be a useful 'all-rounder' that India is looking for? On the other hand, the highest wicket-taker in Ranaji Trophy this season, Rishi Dhawan, is a genuine all rounder. New Zealand tour was the right opportunity to try him abroad, when he is in a red-hot form. By neglecting him, India has brought down morale of many aspiring cricketers who feel merit and talent is not rewarded in Indian cricket.

  • on January 11, 2014, 20:11 GMT

    'Now we know we've got players who can do well anywhere' - Dhoni...how can you say this man.....feel very very bad....our bowler and some bad captaincy let us draw 1st test match... which player do you say that can do well anywhere...i dont think so as per the performance of there star players noo ne stood enough to prove they are any were near to win the match abroad anywere in near future...Dhoni...Graph will go down....down...down ....down

  • on January 11, 2014, 20:08 GMT

    The first time I have heard a captain say this having lost about ten test matches abroad and having returned with empty wins in the last tour! That's a settled team ?

  • boomslanger on January 11, 2014, 20:07 GMT

    @Madan Shivakumar and everyone who will cry for Ishant Sharma's sacking till he hits the pitch hard In NZland.. Ah Ishant Sharma baiting is back on track. Just two days into the SA tour the word was "Oh Where is Ishant? Bring back Ishant before the South Africans score like a five hundred runs in each ODI" Now its' back to "Why Ishant? Sack Ishant!'. Oh ye of little memory and lesser cricketing acumen! Remember Morkel and the grief he caused Indian batsmen? Well, Ishant is a bowler in the same mold.

    Even if Ishant hits the pitch at a 130KPH he is going to cause more grief than Yadavs of yore bowling skiddy at 140KPH. The reason is Hitting the deck will cause the ball to bounce AND seam. Only Ishant can do that, I am hoping that Pandey will be another but even if he is, only one such bowler is a single point of failure. Ishant is still young and can add to his pace if he is bowled in short bursts and not like nine overs in a trot. Ishant can and should be faster...but that's a topic

  • on January 11, 2014, 19:56 GMT

    dhoni u r saying u have that , u did that, just play without kohli n we will c what would happen, try it, and we will c ur captaincy, or let kohli to b captain n u can sit outside as an audience then u will c who deserves to b captain from talent not luck

  • Al_Bundy1 on January 11, 2014, 19:46 GMT

    Except Pujara, Kohli, Rahane and Shami, nobody else should be guaranteed a place in the test team. If Ishant, Rohit, Ashwin don't perform in NZ, they should be dropped. Rishi dhawan and Rasool are good all rounders - they deserve a chance

  • Cpt.Meanster on January 11, 2014, 19:40 GMT

    WELL SAID MSD !! That's the way you answer the media and some cricket lovers (including certain Indian fans) who always have only negative things to say about this wonderful young cricket team. Before you start tagging India as a poor overseas team, take a look at what other Asian teams have done in the same time. Also take a look at the pathetic records of AUS, SA, ENG, and NZ in India. It's time everyone are treated according to merit. Any team that visits India and loses needs to get the same stick as team India. Well said MS. Yes, we have almost a settled unit of players across all formats except the bowlers I am afraid. We need to make sure we play 5 bowlers in tests because time and time again, we have let the opposition off the hook. In ODIs, we are the BEST in the world so I don't mind the 4 bowler theory.

  • HarrowXI on January 11, 2014, 19:31 GMT

    MSD is so biased as a captain. He keep playing same player again & again and ignoring real talented players. India is unable to defend 2015 WC with players like Ishant,Dhawan,Zak and Rohit. Time to bring Pujara,Rahane,I pathan in ODIS. Selectors are doing good job by picking good team but MSD dont select them in playing 11. Rahane & Raydu been warming the bench for more than a year. I wont be suprised if this happens to Ishwar pandey, Umesh yadav and Varon Aaron. B Kumar is such a good talent but dhoni never backs him. But some how Ishant & Rohit sharma always seems to get captain backing. Pujara will get into any ODIs any team in the world but not in india. DHONI should be sacked as a capation before WC as he is too biased. Its been frustrating to read his coments. I pray India loosed badly against NZ and Dhoni got to eat his words. :)

  • Albert_cambell on January 11, 2014, 19:29 GMT

    Corey Anderson has a great opportunity to break his own record. He made his record breaking century against a good bowling attack. Now he will be facing a school boy attack. So he will mostly likely break it. Best wishes to Kiwis from a protea fan.

  • suchet7gmail.com on January 11, 2014, 19:15 GMT

    Indian team proved their ability to do well outside the subcontinent by winning both odi and tests in their last tour of New Zealand2009. On this tour India may not be having likes of Sehwag, Gambhir, Dravid , Laxman, Tendulkar who were instrumental in teams success in both the formats especially Sehwag in ODI through its blistering knocks of raipd fire hundreds. In my opinion indian team has come a long way now. Current players like Dhawan, Kohli and captain Dhoni are able to handle the bounce and pace in NZ. Moreover NZ doesn't have that fire in their bowling as that of SA , ENG or AUS. Indian team is likely to do well in ODI's . Mr. Dhoni should not aim at winning but goal should of comprehensive wins like 4-1 or even 5-0 whitewash of NZ and this form should be carried further in test series also. The top teams in table don't aim of just winning against the bottom placed opponents but aim for winning comprehensively.

  • sabmasti on January 11, 2014, 19:04 GMT

    agree with nlambda - that test match was there for the taking. His underbowling of Shami and overbowling of a tired ineffective Zaheer was confusing to say the least on that last day.

  • on January 11, 2014, 18:49 GMT

    some really surprising comments by dhoni... he says there s tough competition among bowlers whereas ishant sharma has literally had a permanent slot over the past 3-4 years; zaheer can't be dropped if he's in the squad; so the third seamer becomes a scapegoat irrespective of how he bowls; why can't umesh yadav who is certainly faster and better than ishant be the 2nd Pacer? ... he says there are no fast bowling all rounders available! why didn't he push for rishi dhawan s selection when he s had an excellent ranji season? he feels that spinners will play a major role abroad; does he expect a Durban like pitch in new Zealand? also I have a question - whenever people have qualms about jadeja dhoni defends him by quoting his bowling credentials..if jadeja is permitted to be purely a bowler then why can't we replace ishant with jadeja and get an extra batsman in..why cant ashwin bat at 7?

  • on January 11, 2014, 18:48 GMT

    it wont be wrong to say Dhoni is the best captain ever born, his analysis is soo simple and fantastic & he reveals it all like no other catain ever did

  • on January 11, 2014, 18:43 GMT

    India's problems continue as they don't have any good allrounders. Once they find that, they will be unstoppable. Until that, they need to rely on luck and batting.

  • wolf777 on January 11, 2014, 18:42 GMT

    Well you have earned the tag line of Non performer in overseas...don't fault media. Despite the fact that your team has difficulties in taking 20 wickets, you still persist with 6 batsmen theory. How many times we have seen India letting the opposition escape to safety after getting rid of top order cheaply. Why can't you go in with 4 bowlers and one allrounder combination? You have Jadeja to work with now and still you fall back on the same old six batsmen combination.

  • CricketChat on January 11, 2014, 18:35 GMT

    I think MSD shot off his mouth too soon when he says Ind is a settled unit. Definitely not in tests. Dhawan and Rohit just showed on the SA tour that against top quality pace attack, they are walking wkts including Dhoni himself. The spin bowling is no good except on dust bowls. They are definitely a competitive side on ODIs and T20s but not in tests by a long shot.

  • on January 11, 2014, 18:31 GMT

    Kohli Pujara and Rahane that is it every other slot including Dhonis is weak and floundering . As for bowling only shami as for sharma less said the better

  • on January 11, 2014, 18:18 GMT

    i agree....every day of sa test was competitive...unlike the previous foreign tours.....aur and eng specially...

  • on January 11, 2014, 18:17 GMT

    A sensible analysis by Dhoni.

    Wish him and the team all the very best...

  • vrkp on January 11, 2014, 18:17 GMT

    I do agree with Dhonis comments about other teams. If we look at the last 30 years, only once Aus, eng, SA have won a series in India. WI & NZ never won a test series in India in last 30 years and SL HASN'T even won a test in India.

    Pak was even beaten by Zimbabwe in Zimbabwe. AU's, before The 5-0 win, lost 7-0 tests overseas.

    Every team is playing like lion at home and like lambs in away Matches.

  • ranjahna on January 11, 2014, 18:17 GMT

    he is always derating early players by saying such irresponsible comments such as "now we have players who can play any where etc" hope all back fires a sincere indian fan wish

  • on January 11, 2014, 18:15 GMT

    settled to loose abroad?

  • ranjahna on January 11, 2014, 18:13 GMT

    ALL are fine except msd..who is nt worth a slot in team i mean test squad...iam sure he wont forget 2014 his last year in indian test team its downslope frmhere....

  • on January 11, 2014, 18:11 GMT

    is.... Mr dhoni thinkzz wit tis bowling attack he can win matches in forieng pitchzzzz

  • vrkp on January 11, 2014, 18:08 GMT

    Its too early to say that. Except for pujara, kolhi, rahane and to some extent vijay none of the other batsmen played well in SA Odis and tests. Even in bowling, except in the first innings of the first test, our pacers were poor. We may have to wait until at least England tour before making judgements.

  • nlambda on January 11, 2014, 17:53 GMT

    Where are the bowlers? India's attack is largely toothless. Dhoni should still be smarting at failing to win the 1st test vs SA - I know I am.

  • nlambda on January 11, 2014, 17:53 GMT

    Where are the bowlers? India's attack is largely toothless. Dhoni should still be smarting at failing to win the 1st test vs SA - I know I am.

  • vrkp on January 11, 2014, 18:08 GMT

    Its too early to say that. Except for pujara, kolhi, rahane and to some extent vijay none of the other batsmen played well in SA Odis and tests. Even in bowling, except in the first innings of the first test, our pacers were poor. We may have to wait until at least England tour before making judgements.

  • on January 11, 2014, 18:11 GMT

    is.... Mr dhoni thinkzz wit tis bowling attack he can win matches in forieng pitchzzzz

  • ranjahna on January 11, 2014, 18:13 GMT

    ALL are fine except msd..who is nt worth a slot in team i mean test squad...iam sure he wont forget 2014 his last year in indian test team its downslope frmhere....

  • on January 11, 2014, 18:15 GMT

    settled to loose abroad?

  • ranjahna on January 11, 2014, 18:17 GMT

    he is always derating early players by saying such irresponsible comments such as "now we have players who can play any where etc" hope all back fires a sincere indian fan wish

  • vrkp on January 11, 2014, 18:17 GMT

    I do agree with Dhonis comments about other teams. If we look at the last 30 years, only once Aus, eng, SA have won a series in India. WI & NZ never won a test series in India in last 30 years and SL HASN'T even won a test in India.

    Pak was even beaten by Zimbabwe in Zimbabwe. AU's, before The 5-0 win, lost 7-0 tests overseas.

    Every team is playing like lion at home and like lambs in away Matches.

  • on January 11, 2014, 18:17 GMT

    A sensible analysis by Dhoni.

    Wish him and the team all the very best...

  • on January 11, 2014, 18:18 GMT

    i agree....every day of sa test was competitive...unlike the previous foreign tours.....aur and eng specially...

  • on January 11, 2014, 18:31 GMT

    Kohli Pujara and Rahane that is it every other slot including Dhonis is weak and floundering . As for bowling only shami as for sharma less said the better