New Zealand v India, 5th ODI, Wellington January 31, 2014

'Middle orders were the difference' - Dhoni

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Dhoni on where India went wrong

MS Dhoni has said that the series was decided by the gulf in class between the middle orders of India and New Zealand. Indeed, while Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor piled on the runs for the hosts, Dhoni and Virat Kohli were regularly left with too much ground to regain after the other Indian batsmen had disappointed time and again.

"More often than not we were chasing big scores. You know you can't rely on a couple of batsmen," Dhoni said. "What we have seen is that apart from one game, most of the times we have been behind, we have only been doing the catching-up work. And the run-rate goes too high. The last 25 overs, you can't really look to chase eight or nine an over. That was a setback to some extent."

India's problems began at the top where the openers could not build on their starts, and also ended up consuming more overs than usual. A more positive approach from his batting colleagues instead of caution would have helped, Dhoni added.

"At times people start to think too much. Yes they bowled really well. But at the same time we need to back ourselves to play the shots or the kind of cricket that we are known to play. To some extent we got bogged down. We didn't try a different thing. You may lose a few games but it's also important to see the kind of attitude that you bring into the game and try to play aggressive cricket. If you get out, you get out. At the end of the day if you lose too many wickets you are just hoping to save wickets. It has to be a real mix. It's not like this is the formula that will solve the problem.

"What is important is to have a positive intent right from the start and positive intent doesn't always mean looking for the big shots. Positive intention when it comes to defending a ball or looking for a single. So that's a change that we'll have to do."

In complete contrast to their Indian counterparts, Williamson and Taylor had three century partnerships in the series to go with a fifty stand, and Dhoni said not being able to strike in the middle overs was what eventually pulled India down.

"The main difference in the two sides was the middle order batting. They batted really well. They rotated the strike well. Kept wickets in hand and last few (overs) they went for the big shots. That has been the case throughout. If it wasn't Ross, Guptill played a brilliant innings. If it was not Kane, then it was somebody else.

"It was the middle overs that were very crucial and that's where they really dominated. That's the time when we are losing wickets and we are only doing the catching up."

Abhishek Purohit is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on February 4, 2014, 23:08 GMT

    The power of singles is overlooked by the young indian batsmen spoilt by T20 cricket and mediocre bowling attacks on subcontinent pitches. Some of them are too lazy and probably unfit (yes Rohit Sharma thats you) to play substantial overs and run tirelessly.

  • on February 3, 2014, 8:53 GMT

    Dhoni is biggest problem because he plays like it is one man show and everybody else have to do what he tells them to do. for past several years he has been very bad captain. india wins only when batsman chase down difficult target, India is not able to defend small target. This is the reason why both batting department and bowling department is under tremendous pressure. BAD CAPTAINCY . Dhoni has to remember he does not have Yuvraj singh, sachin tendulkar or VVS laxman to handle pressure now. Earlier dhoni used to take all the credit for winning the game but as far as i know he has been worst captain. Harbhajan singh is not getting a place in team clearly shows that dhoni only supports his favorite teammates and have no respect for experience old player.

  • Amit_4_Sachin on February 2, 2014, 1:45 GMT

    Problem lies in the whole of top & middle order in which everyone apart from Kohli failed. In bowling, Shami & Bhuvi were decent, Jadeja showed he can be a world class allrounder, Aaron improved with every match he played and these were the positives. India could had easily won the series wth a little better batting effort.

    India need to re-look at their strategy at the top & need one match winning bowler. Two new openers, two new middle order batsmen and a medium pace bowling allrounder (Pathan (when fit) or Rishi Dhawan) to replace Ashwin are the order of the day.

  • geevee97 on February 1, 2014, 19:39 GMT

    Ishanth sharma after bowling well in one inninings in south africa, he started telling that he has learnt and improved and also said that he has to to pitch the ball up to the batsmen on helpful conditons.. but in the subsequent matches he is always bowling short of length.. which tells that he doesn't have control over where he bowls.. and clearly he is also not a thinking bowler(remember 30 runs given by him to faulkner in an over that too in a chase).. keeping these sort of bowlers and how do you expect to take wickets.. Dhoni in a ridiculous statement said that he is choosing two spinners because of fear of over rate.. he is forgetting that he is the captain.. other captains are having five fast bowlers and completing the overs in the scheduled time. but dhoni is adamant that he wont change.. so his team also doesn't change.. look at the NZ, they changed their bowling combination almost every match which makes it unpredictable,where as any time, everyone knows what dhoni will do

  • lakmina on February 1, 2014, 14:34 GMT

    Dhoni should be sacked from captiancy...failed in Eng, Aus, SA & again in NZ. He should step down like the way dravid did after the previous world cup failures. Viru, Gauti & Yuvi should be back to the squad. Munaf & Kumar shoud be back to squad.

  • on February 1, 2014, 11:46 GMT

    From last 12 ODI [outside India], India won just 1, tie 1 [luckily] & lost 10 of them... So they are definitely Minnows... they should play in the 2nd tier of ODI with China, Namibia, Hongkong or Canada..

  • spinkingKK on February 1, 2014, 11:46 GMT

    @VipinGangwar, very well said. However, you do have to give weight to the fact that Ashes is a prestige issue for both teams. If you lose it badly, some prominent names are bound to go to oblivion. Having said that, I agree with you regarding the Indian selection. Inconsistency is never a problem in India. If you can score a double century in 20 matches, that will give you a life for another 20 matches. This is partly because there aren't may other options available either.

  • spinkingKK on February 1, 2014, 11:41 GMT

    To me, the result is no surprise at all. But, India have found some positives from the series. Firstly, there has been some real lower order batting from Ashwin and Jadeja in one match. They have to keep doing it consistently and if Irfan Pathan comes into the side with Binny(if he is good), that will make a formidable lower order. Another positive is Aaron. The guy is bowling fast. Forget about the economy rate. I hope they keep faith in him and give him a very long run in the international matches. India should also give another extended run to Yuvraj Singh. He is a match winner and should be given a license to unleash his sixers with the assurance that he can't be dropped. Pack the team with more match winners. Yusuf and Irfan Pathan, KKD Karthik and Pujara are the other names comes to my mind. To be honest, Rahane has proved me wrong. May be he is more of a test player. Let's see how he performs in the test series. To me, Raina also should be persisted with.

  • lakmina on February 1, 2014, 11:32 GMT

    As an Indian fan shame to say we don't have talents to win overseas matches. Most of the time batting fails in overseas condition and bowling department has done okay. This time both batting & bowling failed. We can't accept 4-0 series lost to NZ. Dhoni should step down from captaincy after losing England, Australia, South Africa and now NZ series. We soon forget these loss and start enjoy our IPL and matches in Indian conditions. We should get Shewag, Gambir and Yuvi back to squad and throw shekar, Suresh raina and Rohit out to improve their batting. We should also get back Kumar, Munaf back to bowling squad and throw Ishant out.

    If we dont win test series, as an Indian fan I will stop buying all the products where we have current indian players in the AD. Atleast I can do this to show my frustration.

  • FTBRocks on February 1, 2014, 9:08 GMT

    Dear Dhoni,

    Dont Worry as T20 WC and Asia Cup, both are coming soon on FT for all your FTBs to Rock the World and We Indian fans will again be Happy till India's next away tour outside sub-continent..

    @Shane Bond..Nice to see you man..

  • on February 4, 2014, 23:08 GMT

    The power of singles is overlooked by the young indian batsmen spoilt by T20 cricket and mediocre bowling attacks on subcontinent pitches. Some of them are too lazy and probably unfit (yes Rohit Sharma thats you) to play substantial overs and run tirelessly.

  • on February 3, 2014, 8:53 GMT

    Dhoni is biggest problem because he plays like it is one man show and everybody else have to do what he tells them to do. for past several years he has been very bad captain. india wins only when batsman chase down difficult target, India is not able to defend small target. This is the reason why both batting department and bowling department is under tremendous pressure. BAD CAPTAINCY . Dhoni has to remember he does not have Yuvraj singh, sachin tendulkar or VVS laxman to handle pressure now. Earlier dhoni used to take all the credit for winning the game but as far as i know he has been worst captain. Harbhajan singh is not getting a place in team clearly shows that dhoni only supports his favorite teammates and have no respect for experience old player.

  • Amit_4_Sachin on February 2, 2014, 1:45 GMT

    Problem lies in the whole of top & middle order in which everyone apart from Kohli failed. In bowling, Shami & Bhuvi were decent, Jadeja showed he can be a world class allrounder, Aaron improved with every match he played and these were the positives. India could had easily won the series wth a little better batting effort.

    India need to re-look at their strategy at the top & need one match winning bowler. Two new openers, two new middle order batsmen and a medium pace bowling allrounder (Pathan (when fit) or Rishi Dhawan) to replace Ashwin are the order of the day.

  • geevee97 on February 1, 2014, 19:39 GMT

    Ishanth sharma after bowling well in one inninings in south africa, he started telling that he has learnt and improved and also said that he has to to pitch the ball up to the batsmen on helpful conditons.. but in the subsequent matches he is always bowling short of length.. which tells that he doesn't have control over where he bowls.. and clearly he is also not a thinking bowler(remember 30 runs given by him to faulkner in an over that too in a chase).. keeping these sort of bowlers and how do you expect to take wickets.. Dhoni in a ridiculous statement said that he is choosing two spinners because of fear of over rate.. he is forgetting that he is the captain.. other captains are having five fast bowlers and completing the overs in the scheduled time. but dhoni is adamant that he wont change.. so his team also doesn't change.. look at the NZ, they changed their bowling combination almost every match which makes it unpredictable,where as any time, everyone knows what dhoni will do

  • lakmina on February 1, 2014, 14:34 GMT

    Dhoni should be sacked from captiancy...failed in Eng, Aus, SA & again in NZ. He should step down like the way dravid did after the previous world cup failures. Viru, Gauti & Yuvi should be back to the squad. Munaf & Kumar shoud be back to squad.

  • on February 1, 2014, 11:46 GMT

    From last 12 ODI [outside India], India won just 1, tie 1 [luckily] & lost 10 of them... So they are definitely Minnows... they should play in the 2nd tier of ODI with China, Namibia, Hongkong or Canada..

  • spinkingKK on February 1, 2014, 11:46 GMT

    @VipinGangwar, very well said. However, you do have to give weight to the fact that Ashes is a prestige issue for both teams. If you lose it badly, some prominent names are bound to go to oblivion. Having said that, I agree with you regarding the Indian selection. Inconsistency is never a problem in India. If you can score a double century in 20 matches, that will give you a life for another 20 matches. This is partly because there aren't may other options available either.

  • spinkingKK on February 1, 2014, 11:41 GMT

    To me, the result is no surprise at all. But, India have found some positives from the series. Firstly, there has been some real lower order batting from Ashwin and Jadeja in one match. They have to keep doing it consistently and if Irfan Pathan comes into the side with Binny(if he is good), that will make a formidable lower order. Another positive is Aaron. The guy is bowling fast. Forget about the economy rate. I hope they keep faith in him and give him a very long run in the international matches. India should also give another extended run to Yuvraj Singh. He is a match winner and should be given a license to unleash his sixers with the assurance that he can't be dropped. Pack the team with more match winners. Yusuf and Irfan Pathan, KKD Karthik and Pujara are the other names comes to my mind. To be honest, Rahane has proved me wrong. May be he is more of a test player. Let's see how he performs in the test series. To me, Raina also should be persisted with.

  • lakmina on February 1, 2014, 11:32 GMT

    As an Indian fan shame to say we don't have talents to win overseas matches. Most of the time batting fails in overseas condition and bowling department has done okay. This time both batting & bowling failed. We can't accept 4-0 series lost to NZ. Dhoni should step down from captaincy after losing England, Australia, South Africa and now NZ series. We soon forget these loss and start enjoy our IPL and matches in Indian conditions. We should get Shewag, Gambir and Yuvi back to squad and throw shekar, Suresh raina and Rohit out to improve their batting. We should also get back Kumar, Munaf back to bowling squad and throw Ishant out.

    If we dont win test series, as an Indian fan I will stop buying all the products where we have current indian players in the AD. Atleast I can do this to show my frustration.

  • FTBRocks on February 1, 2014, 9:08 GMT

    Dear Dhoni,

    Dont Worry as T20 WC and Asia Cup, both are coming soon on FT for all your FTBs to Rock the World and We Indian fans will again be Happy till India's next away tour outside sub-continent..

    @Shane Bond..Nice to see you man..

  • on February 1, 2014, 4:46 GMT

    @Sk123 I hate to say, but last time you came here NZ were in tatters and your board twisted our board's arm to prepare roads. This is true, either you believe it or not.

    It is high time you guys prepare green pitches (last time I went there I was assured grass grows in India). It will nurture your bowlers Shami who bowled well and aaron. Greenish tinge and dry surface will only contribute in better performance of your team.

  • fudgys11 on February 1, 2014, 4:31 GMT

    Its high time Dhoni starts to take some blame on himself for the actions on the field and selection mistakes. Any other captain would have resigned by now. We have a decent enough history of his poor captaincy on foreign soil. If he has enjoyed the bouquets for his captaincy in India , he should be responsible for the failures too. It can't be that we win series by his captaincy and lose series by someone else's fault. He might have batted brilliantly this series and the last series but in captaincy he has looked out of his depth. Just like we chose him when there was no alternative candidate, we should take chances with somebody else. We cannot go much worlse than we already are.For all you know , you might find a new captain. Remember we lost 0-8 last year and this year too the figures are reaching that and he has the whole world to blame except himself. No player would want to get castigated by his own captain publicly. This brings down the morale of the team.

  • rajuramki on February 1, 2014, 3:40 GMT

    Indian openers were playing the one dayers as if they were test matches. The openers were consuming too many overs for two few runs . By the time they realised this, the reqd run rate has already become too high with the result that they lost their wickets trying to accelerate . aIn every match, the middle order was under pressure not ony to protect their wickets but also accelerate .Kohli and Dhoni did their best but that was not enough . India should have technically correct batsmen like Pujara and Vijay who can rotate the strike to keep the RRR under control . As for bowling, no bowler was upto the mark . With a bunch of mediocre bowlers that India has, I can be certain that India does not stand a chance in the forthcoming world cup .

  • AvidCricFan on February 1, 2014, 2:28 GMT

    India failed on both fronts, batting and bowling. I don't think Dhawan and Rohit Sharma have right skills to succeed on seaming and bouncy wickets. Sharma may have range of shots, but has major weakness outside the off and has very poor batting game plan. Dhawan is completely out of sorts. Rahane was unimpressive and Raina has been enough chances at this point. He needs to be shown the door now.

  • on February 1, 2014, 2:10 GMT

    This is what dhoni calls preparing for the WC !! All the good players are thrown out of the team and left with bunch of clueless individuals. lol Simply on merits , from the current team , I think only Kohli deserves a place in the team. And Shami + jadeja to some extent. Rest all should be removed. Would love to see Yuvi , Gauti and Viru back in the fold

  • Rufus_Fuddleduck on February 1, 2014, 1:50 GMT

    Dhoni had 25 in around 50 deliveries and at that point Kohli got out. Both events not entirely disconnected. Playing yourself in and throttling the guy who's been running the show - this is not the first time this has happened, so difficult to see coincidences anymore. After that the great one can either take over and corner the glory, or still get a decent score and fail, and be mentioned honourably. Either case the purpose of the team victory has been subordinated. Wonder why our statisticians cannot analyse this pattern.

  • prjnua6 on February 1, 2014, 1:04 GMT

    So Captain cool is saying if Top order performs well means Rohit and Dhawan, we can win bc that puts less pressure on middle order. And if they play slow or bad, middle order is not capable of making required runs. Well, if you want to win matches, mix or bunch have to perform. Rohit, raina, ashwin are not doing great job. Irfan should def get a chance. He is seam bowling allrounder. Bring Pujara into the ODI. Hes a run machine.

    I think Kohli should be captain. Dhoni has too much workload and responsibility as great Dada said once. Lets dhoni rest and only handle keeping. Odi team should be: 1) Pujara (opening) 2) Dhawan / Gambhir (who performs better gets to play 3) Kohli (amazing player) 4 ) Dhoni (should bat at this position 5) Shehwag / Rahane 6) Jadeja (good batting find in NZ) 7) Irfan 8) Zaheer 9) Shami 10) Bhuvneshkumar 11) Sharma/ AAron

    7 batsman. 5 pace bowlers. 2 spin bowler (Jadeja and shehwag)

    If bowling is the problem, then fix it instead of complaining. I did it.

  • VipinGangwar on February 1, 2014, 0:16 GMT

    Look at England, they lost 1 series that badly under flower, and he is a gonner. Fletcher is still there without doing anything which justifies his stay.

    Prior played badly in two outings, he was left out midway, Swann retired. they could not survive a series or two. Raina, Ishant and Rohit are there for years without performing even to respect for their time in the team.

    Cooks captaincy is in doubt after loosing one tour, Dhoni has survived for the years without winning a significant test abroad.

    Dhoni, Raina, Ashwin and Rohit all are IPL stars and their presence draws a lot of money. So BCCI will play them to generate more revenue rather than quality of cricket.

  • on January 31, 2014, 22:30 GMT

    Its a really funny look holding the cricketing world to ransom when your pants are around your ankles india! You have to say nz is simply a better team at the moment. I wouldn't bet against 2 nil in the tests either. You dont have the bowlers to even threaten taking 20 wickets. Constantly chasing cash and pushing your weight around has caused you to take your eye of the ball on the field and you are left with these embarrassing results. Why did you shorten the tour...just because you can.... give us and the rest of the cricketing world the respect we deserve. Hey india...please don't ruin cricket for everyone!!!

  • on January 31, 2014, 20:55 GMT

    Bring in players from Ranji, this will help India team to have good players in India and outside India. BCCI please stop giving chances to raina, rohit(no hit sharma), Ishant sharma(no wicket sharma), Ashwin(don't know how to take wicket), Dhawan(junior shewag). India team need few more players like kholi, who perform regularly. Dhoni should stop thinking of world cup, if he keeps this kind of team

  • myStraightTalk on January 31, 2014, 18:55 GMT

    The problem is with Dhoni and not with the indian team. If india lost closely then it make sense for Dhoni to make this comment. India lost big in all the series played abroad. Indian cricket lovers will change the captainship soon.

  • on January 31, 2014, 18:50 GMT

    This ICC ratings is a fluke. How could a number eight team beat the number one team 4-0 and that number one team only move down to second position? For such a beating from a lower ranked team that number one team should have been much farther down the order like 5 or 6. How could you be still so highly ranked when all you could do was barely squeezed out a draw from five straight games? Look how quick they push West Indies down the order from losing just a few games,the same amount as India lose.

  • kumarcoolbuddy on January 31, 2014, 18:43 GMT

    That's right. Even if a player hits centuries he cannot win the matches while the other players are fragile. It happened for Sachin and for Kohli. He is the only confidence India has. The more I think the more I feel that on these kind of flat pitches we cannot expect much from bowlers especiialy when our batting line-up doesn't seem confident on defending the scores. I saw Dhawan's face and he was like "God,what should I do" as if he never played any shots. Lets talk about bowling on test pitches but I have never see this Indian team so bad in batting on flat pitches.

  • mucheemaann on January 31, 2014, 18:42 GMT

    Dhoni says that death bowling is a problem for his team. Dhoni says that his bowlers do not think. Dhoni said that his team relies on couple of batsmen. All this is making sense because 4-0 results reflect that. What he did not say is that wins and defeats are part of a cycle.

    They go abroad, they lose; they play in India, they win. As long as they have a fair balance of India games and abroad, Dhoni can claim at least 50% win percentage. The problem is that India recently played two series abroad continuously which is hurting the perception. South Africa ODI series should have been followed up with a high scoring series against West Indies at home, and then they should have gone to NZ.

    I hope BCCI will understand this and learn from their scheduling mistakes.

  • sk123 on January 31, 2014, 18:12 GMT

    ha ha .. reminds me of the last India tour of NZ. Sehwag's confidence was outrageous. The same Mills was hit for 6s and 4s from the 1st ball of the game. Mills had the same look on his face that Dhawan has this entire series - scared and confused. Sehwag didn't score many runs, but at least the batsmen following Sehwag didn't think that there were demons in the pitch. I hope Kohli understands how it was to be Tendulkar in 90s. It's not easy to win a game by yourself when others around you don't have a clue.

  • KallisTheGreatest on January 31, 2014, 17:58 GMT

    Mr.Dhoni, who bowled middle overs for you? Your two IPL buddies.isn't it? Why not give others a chance? If you pick your bowlers considering their batting skills more than bowling skills, then you can't expect a better result than this !

  • niazbhi on January 31, 2014, 17:21 GMT

    NZ had Williamson and Taylor (guys who can build) in the middle. India had Kohli. India's Rahane, Raina and Puajara did not shine, but they had some success. India needs Dhoni and Jadeja to play 4 and 5 (Jadeja at 4) and see how it goes. India does not have someone like Corey Anderson and Brandon (if Dhoni plays at 5). But if Kohli, Dhoni and Jadeja do well, someone like Ashwin or Raina can play some shots. NZ fast bowling is better than india's. I would argue, if NZ plays as much test cricket as India at home and gets to play against big nations, they can be ranked at the three or four.

  • on January 31, 2014, 17:10 GMT

    Its really shameful that Indian captain hardly praises his bowlers..so much hype around Indian powerful batting line up but they still unable to give a target of 300+ or chase 300+ overseas while chased down 350+ in India..moreover what about players like Raina, Dhawan (2nd Sehwag), Rohit..they are playing only just because of their one good series...I realy don't remember when last time Raina played a good inning..Shikhar is also after champions trophy n Indian soil..no big score..Rohit hardly get ball at bat overseas..NOW I ALSO BELIEVE THAT INDIAN TEAM IS A TIGER TEAM ONLY ON PAPER...last time in England & Australia..now in SA & NZ...4 quality team & they showed how good they are overseas...

  • on January 31, 2014, 17:06 GMT

    dhoni should pick pujara for batting and irfan pathan as an allrounder...

  • dabbadubba on January 31, 2014, 16:16 GMT

    bring back sachin tendulkar

  • on January 31, 2014, 16:12 GMT

    May be if Dhoni attacked a bit more in the middle overs, rather than letting the new Zealanders dominate in the middle, then it wouldn't be a problem? He keeps persisting with his spinners who have consistently let the new zealanders settle into a comfort zone especially Ashwin. He bowled what..about 45 overs in the series and managed 1 wicket? And most of those overs were around the wicket. Negative defensive tactics are the ONE OF THE reason India is getting dominated. Why is his captaincy so secure? How many times does this team need to get white washed before the board puts pressure on him? And as far as selection goes just wow... drop Rohit Sharma who has been very selfish in his slow starts even when chasing huge totals (someone remind him this isn't subcontinent), drop Raina & Ishant Sharma. Bring in Pujara, and give fringe players chances.

  • raj-m on January 31, 2014, 16:06 GMT

    Finally, they(team management) have recognized & acknowledged it. This(taking too many balls up front & leaving the balls or shouldering the arm just for the sake of it) is been the case, especially with Rohit Sharma ever since last year's champions trophy but since then most of the matches & tournaments were won by us no one cared to even mention it. The biggest problem is that Rohit Sharma takes 70-80% of the strike in the first few overs, some times even 90%,only if they are able to stay beyond 10-15 overs then Dhawan is getting a decent percentage of strike. And adding to that(barring this match) Rohit Sharma mindset is too occupied in not loosing his wicket(it might be the criticism of throwing away his wicket, that resulted himto get into this mind frame). Is he benefiting from this no,because if you are not going to have at least 70-80% strike rate after playing 30-40 balls that too in first ten overs, then you'll definitely fell the pressure & eventually loose the wicket.

  • tim_peace on January 31, 2014, 15:47 GMT

    I'm having a laugh thinking that after the several embarrassing defeats abroad, India is still ranked second in all formats! Dhoni and coach Fletcher have to tell the nation what their plans are. While Dhoni seems to have one eye on WC2015, he is not taking any concrete decisions with respect to building a team to play in overseas conditions. When other teams travel abroad, they spend a lot of time training and playing practice matches to get used to the conditions. We are just busy hopping around from game to game. I pity the Indian players who suffer under BCCI's Money First policy. Due to IPL, Ashwin has become a magician whose tricks have been mercilessly exposed by playing alongside foreign players who have also understood Dhoni's thinking and the weaknesses of Indian players. May BCCI see Cricket First and focus on strengthening the weaknesses of our players and May Dhoni take a short break that he needs and come back afresh!

  • on January 31, 2014, 15:36 GMT

    until Rohit is in the team, India will never win at overseas. I don't know how Rohit looks talented to many of the ex-cricketers like Gavaskar, Ravi... I wonder how Dhoni still has faith with him

  • on January 31, 2014, 15:35 GMT

    this is the perfect time for senior get place in team Eleven..... at least the three peoples 1. gambir 2. yuvraj 3. zaheer..........

  • Srmu on January 31, 2014, 15:24 GMT

    Why are we going with the tried and tested 5 specialist bowler theory ? Lets play with extra batsman. In anycase we know from the past 15 odd matches irrespective of the conditions our bowlers have been chasing 300 plus total. . Irrespective of how many runs a bolwer concedes the specialist bowlers have to complete their 10 overs. Why cant our bowlers bowl to their fields? Why cant our bowlers be taugh to hit the same spot six times in an over. Do our batsmen get freebies from opponents bowling attack? Its high time our bowlers learn from opposition.

  • chandramohan123 on January 31, 2014, 15:06 GMT

    if india needs to starts winning , kindly drop Rohit Sharma

  • on January 31, 2014, 15:05 GMT

    You are absolutely right JewelJoseph....That's what happening with present team......so now, I couldn't comment more after all these...

  • kumarcoolbuddy on January 31, 2014, 15:01 GMT

    I was expecting different conditions to that of Indian pitches but it didn't happen. So this was series was so intersting for me. But NZ performed very well and they deserve this win. NZ team looks like a T20 team (probably that is hwy they chose flat pitches) except couple of batsmen but they outplayed India in all departments especially fielding and to some extent bowling. Our team selection was so bad that Ishant Sharma was replaced with Varun Aaron who cannot even bowl to domestic level. This great Indian batting lineup's body language was showing as if they were playing in toughest conditions. No one can understand what was putting them under so much pressure. I don't wanna waste my time talking about Ashwin.

  • Vikram_Rathore on January 31, 2014, 14:59 GMT

    Rohit IPL Sharma has got the kind of talent that only the expert eyes of Gavaskar, Ravi Shastri & Dhoni can see. Rohit should become a soft skills trainer for IT professionals on how to stay in the team, despite being a bottom performer. How did Ambati Rayudu with a 1st class average of 45.32 get into the National Side!?? Ajinkya Rahane has an ODI average comparable to Ashwin & Jadeja. Ambati Rayudu, Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, is it a coincidence that several bunch of Mumbai players have made into and have been lingering around in the team despite not performing!

  • ProdigyA on January 31, 2014, 14:49 GMT

    Why does Rohit always have to start with a couple of maiden overs. I remember when Viru was playing, he would so often start of with a boundary and I would be disappointed if he did not start that way. The feeling was the bowler needed sometime to loosen up which Viru made sure they paid for it.

    But nowadays, I'm glad even if we start we get a single in the first over. The feeling now is batsman need to get used to the wicket so he can play out a few over at the start.

    What a huge difference it makes when a batsman with Viru's mindset plays, the bowlers are already on the defensive.

    I'm not suggesting that we need to bring back Viru but we definitely are missing that aggressive approach.

  • sray23 on January 31, 2014, 14:27 GMT

    I think it is hard to blame the batsmen only. India now needs to seriously ask itself questions on why, despite all its playing and financial resources, it does not product good solid bowlers. Otherwise, no matter whether BCCI secures 30% or 50% or 80% or 200% more revenue from ICC, India will never ever gain any respect (and rightfully so) as a serious cricketing nation.

  • on January 31, 2014, 14:13 GMT

    I find Dhoni's comments to be a fun read after India continue to lose. Yesterday it was the fast bowlers before that it was the openers and today it is the middle overs. Oh well. CLT is just a distant dream now. Losing so comprehensively is not fun. I am grumpy.

  • criclover2 on January 31, 2014, 13:55 GMT

    Whereever pitch does not support spin it means india is in trouble bcoz dhoni's overdependent on ashwin jadeja

  • 6pack on January 31, 2014, 13:46 GMT

    Man... Indian fans should be very worried - bludgeoned by a well put together NZ unit. Really does pose some serious questions for the defending champs... defending the cup won't be easy at all... out of their familiar environment.

  • gosinghal on January 31, 2014, 13:45 GMT

    Why does the selection Board not say that enough is enough. The Captain has so much ego that he thinks that he has become the Lord and no one can question. There waas only one player Sehvag who foreign bowlers feared. Common him. Sstatement was if they could get Sehvag out they would be able to get the entire team out. D oni's argument was that Sehwag is out of form. In South Africa tests Dhoni's average was <25 and average of his star players was even less. Gambhir is another case - he perhaps felt threatened by him for his captainancy. Often argument is given that Dhoni is working to raise the team for 2015 word cup. So let him be the captain for 20-20 or inter. one day and bring Sehvag and Gambhir back to play in foreign soil where Dhoni is useless. Make the only player who is doing well Virat Kohli as Captain. If Dhoni wants to be included as a team menmber so far so goog othervise bring Didesh Kartik as Wicket keeper and Sanju as stand by.That is the only way for test team.

  • crkt4evr on January 31, 2014, 13:39 GMT

    if williamson and taylor scoring was the diff thn why dint dhoni pair up with kohli at 4 to do the same for india!

  • on January 31, 2014, 13:38 GMT

    At last!! Mishra need to play!!

  • on January 31, 2014, 13:36 GMT

    If teams are to be taken as per IPL standards, this is the result we should expect. New generation lack ethics as they are filthy rich and playing with franchise T Shirt and country T shirt are the same. BCCI's days as rich cricket body are counted, audience are looking at the way how standards are handled. Time for Dhoni to give up test captaincy, greed is not good for the country. 5 fielder rule has finally exposed India's stamina. If India wants to continue with cheap leagues and spin pitches (unique for India) we can see mediocrity and will be humiliated in every overseas tour.

  • sumit_fan on January 31, 2014, 13:33 GMT

    MSD is gaining expertise not just as a finisher but also as an after match spokesperson for the losing Indian side. He is too hell bent on trying his own methods and does not want to give players a fair run. What wrong has Pujara to not be part of a team which does not have technically strong batsman to cope with such bowling. The likes of Pujara/Pathan/Binny will have to go to CSk if they need to build a career with the national team. He needs to give certain players a kick on the back and send them packing. Ashwin's average for a frontline spinner is appalling. Well, Fairness is just a term used by fairness creams these days.

  • JewelJoseph on January 31, 2014, 13:32 GMT

    Most of the comments here are about bringing players like Sehwag back.But they are struggling in domestic circuit,even on flat tracks against mediocre attacks.And Rohit is not incapable of playing big shots.It is his attitude that needs to change.He is too concerned about his personal performance to change his attitude and play positively.Dhawan on the other hand is a showman who loves to make a statement and he throws his wicket away too often trying to do so.And its too quick to write off Rahane and Rayudu.We don't have world class fast bowlers.Zak has lost his venom and others don't make an impact.And Dhoni's strategy over the years was using spinners and part timers to squeeze in overs.With the new rules,this ploy backfires sometimes,And when it does,Dhoni is out of options with his average pace pack.Wake up call to men in blue!

  • UNIVERSAL_CRICKETER on January 31, 2014, 13:27 GMT

    These results are a huge kick on the butt of all those who forced Sachin Tendulkar to retire HASTILY...he should have played till 2015 World Cup..IN AUSTRALIA & NZLD...at the least....This is NOT sentiments or emotions for the God of cricket....but Realistic & Pragmatic facts..... When at least 2 to 3 batsman are failing consistently...what harm was there in playing Sachin ...What the team would have got back was infinite...1.a world class batsman averaging near 50...2.experience of 22 years...3..worlds best batsman for free as BATTING CONSULTANT...4..a confidence booster & calmness giver for the dressing room 5..Sachin taking the scrutiny & limelight off others...6..opposition still fearful & wasting energies on how to get Sachin out leaving others peacefully....7..a crowd puller for empty stadiums...8..a interlocutor between players & board...He saved Harbhajan & Sourav!!... The emphasis is...THIS Indian team, especially the batsman were not prepared for Sachin's retirement...

  • tanstell87 on January 31, 2014, 13:25 GMT

    middle overs are the difference then why not selecting bowlers who can pick wickets in middle overs as Ashwin who has taken 1 wicket since SA tour cant pick wickets...why not give chance to other spinners - Mishra, Ojha, Harbhajan, Rasool, Jalaj Saxena...oh they dont play for CSK

  • jay_vkjay on January 31, 2014, 13:21 GMT

    Have a look at R Ashwin's bowling statistics: In South Africa: 4 matches, 70 overs,5 maidens, 277 runs,'1' wicket & strike rate of 420.00 in New Zealand: 5 matches, 44 overs,0 maidens, 227 runs ,'1' wicket & strike rate of 227.00

    Still he is Dhoni's first choice bowler!!!!!!!!!!! For me Dhoni's hapless captaincy cost India the series. In 4th ODI with Binny around,Dhoni gave Rayudu 4 overs only 1 over to Binny,then dropped him in 5th match. Fed up with Dhoni's obsolete tactics.

  • SANATP22 on January 31, 2014, 13:15 GMT

    Time to take strong discussion on team combination & Drop S Dhawan,Rohit Sharma, R Ashwin, Bhuneshawar Kumar, Ishant Sharma and A Rahane from 15 member squad and time to bring G Gambhir, VIjay Zol,Manoj Tiwary,RL Rahul, S Samson, Rishi Dhawan,Yuvraj Singh,Harbhanjan Singh, Irfan Pathan and Parveen kumar to team.

  • on January 31, 2014, 13:11 GMT

    As a indian fan we have to accept some facts & if we want to get to semis (atleast) in 2015 world cup we have to make some serious changes in our batting & bowling. 1. First please dont include raina or rohit in the world cup probable. Raina playing for almost 190 odi's doesnt even take the responsibility when the team is in trouble. He always gets those quick 20 & 30's but doesnt got that match winning ability to take his team over the line Rohit: Most over talented & classy batsmen as many say.he is not worth to be part of the team. He play an elegant shot for a six & plays 20 dot ball building pressure not only to him & also to the non striker.so let him go back to domestic cricket & learn to rotate strike instead of going to big shots every 20 balls. 2. Bring back Zaheer & Irfan to the ODI team. If Zaheer is fit to play test then he is more than a asset in odi's. He gets the yorker right 9 out of 10 times. Irfan will bring the X-factor with batting.

  • tim_peace on January 31, 2014, 13:09 GMT

    Dhoni's interviews are as flamboyant as his batting skills. Unfortunately his views don't seem to be falling on the ears of his own players! When Dhawan and Rohit were dawdling aimlessly, what was the captain doing then? Allowing them practice for the upcoming test matches? Its easy to blame everyone after the game. But the captain has the power to control things. He has to tell each member that they have to win their spot or make way not guarantee them a permanent spot. Accountability is important and also to showing some emotion during the game will make some players wake up from their complacency. Enough of Captain Cool! We are frozen dead!

  • SamRoy on January 31, 2014, 13:04 GMT

    Any way losing meaningless ODIs is not a big issue. I just hope Dhoni doesn't pick Ishant and Zaheer for tests. Losing tests 2-0 will be a big issue (and Dhoni should be sacked without delay if that happens but with his boss as BCCI President and soon to be ICC President doubt that will happen). If you pick Zak and Ishant India's bowling becomes basically 2 bowlers Shami and Jadeja and neither are they that good or experienced to take 20 wickets. Preferably India requires 5 bowlers but the only genuine pace-bowling all-rounder in the country is Rishi Dhawan and I still don't whether his batting is steady enough. So we have to go with 6 batsman and 4 bowlers in overseas conditions for the tests. The bowlers should be Bhuvi/Pandey (one of those two), Umesh, Shami and Jadeja. Aaron as back-up would have helped as well. Batting is fine though Gambhir should be reserve opener (and replace Dhawan if he fails) and preferably Saha/Yagnik in place of Dhoni in green pitches for tests.

  • sumgad on January 31, 2014, 13:02 GMT

    For someone who has such a high reputation in India, MS Dhoni has shown himself to be a below average captain. He made the job of Williamson and Ross Taylor so easy by not changing his bowling attack.Both Kate and Ross seemed so comfortable with unchanged Indian bowlers. He had to try out Amit Mishra. His field settings were devoid of any logic ..more reactive than insightful. All through the series, he blamed respectively his openers,bowlers or middle order. So who does this leave Indian team without blemish? In final analysis, India is not just good enough to play anywhere else except in the sub continent.Its batting skills are suspect and bowling below par. And captain too rigid and devoid of creative ideas.

  • on January 31, 2014, 12:59 GMT

    I am surprised with selectors and Dhoni. Why would they ignore a fine Player, Pujara. MSD, it is not nice to make less then intelligent decisions and then turn around and blame middle order.

  • ShanNachimuthu on January 31, 2014, 12:56 GMT

    With this current bowling attack India can not win matches even at home. Need to strengthen the bowling department. No matter how good batsmen you have with this bowling you can not win matches consistently.

  • on January 31, 2014, 12:45 GMT

    This is where the importance of Yuvraj, Sehwag lies. They bring so much into the table. They may fail in some innings, but the attitude, the aggression that they bring into the field, infects others and results in a much better and positive show.

    I feel India's fate was decided in the first few overs of the first ODI match against SA, where Rohit Sharma was literally afraid to even strike the balls of Dale Steyn. He showed no intent to play a single ball outside off stump, as if it was a test match. And that inferior attitude infected the whole team. We need someone like a Sehwag..who plays a no-fear cricket and never allows a bowler to get on top of him. Without such aggression, such results were expected.

  • on January 31, 2014, 12:34 GMT

    yes dhoni pointed out right thing.difference between ind vs nz in this series is middle order. but our bowlers did not bowled well as we expect from them. negative approach at the beginning of the innings is not negotiable. try to overcome that battle if you lose 1 or 2 wickets nothing will happen. momentum is good to follow the next batsmen.but that didn't happended in the entire series

  • on January 31, 2014, 12:32 GMT

    It does not take a captaincy degree to figure out that you need a Rahul-Dravid alike at no 3 when india tours abroad. With strike rates of 85-90 and pulling the team along as others strike is important. Ganguly got it and used Rahul as his sheet anchor. Dhoni is really trying to slug it out with T20 and flat track bullies even in overseas conditions. Similar to Kane Williamson, India have Pujara, why was he not considered? Dhoni is rewarding loyalty and alignment more than content. His team cannot pull it off outside India. he has to first realize that.

  • hayer on January 31, 2014, 12:29 GMT

    Pujara is much needed in India top order. We have so many big hitters but need someone to hold one end to keep wickets in Hand. I would prefer Pujara over Rohit because of his consistency, temperament and hunger to score. No doubt Rohit is a good batsman but India can't afford to give him same amount of time to settle down overseas as much as he was given to settle down in India conditions. Management should realise that Talent is not everything. Biggest thing is how you many runs you score. Kambli was much more talented than Dravid & Ganguly. But he is left far behind. Sometimes I do feel that long failure has made Rohit bit selfish. He is not willing to rotate strike which slows down his SR and act as a bottle neck at the top. Sometimes he score more boundaries then Dhawan but still Dhawan keeps better SR by taking the singles. I am not blaming one person for this series, there are Raina, Dhawan and Ashwin as well apart from quicks. No need to mention Sir Ishant.

  • on January 31, 2014, 12:16 GMT

    Nothing to do with middle, top or lower order MSD. You can only win matches in played in India. We do not NZ of all gave us a thrashing. Bangaladesh beat NZ comprehensively. Something is not right with our team is it. Perhaps if we play proper cricket we might get good at it. Embarrassed to be an Indian supporter.

  • A.Ak on January 31, 2014, 12:14 GMT

    Yes middle order failed, BUT the OPENERS is the problem. Rahane and Rayudu are very to ODI, but those flat track bullies at the top are the reason for no victory in 8 overseas games, particularly after so called in-form home series.

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  • A.Ak on January 31, 2014, 12:14 GMT

    Yes middle order failed, BUT the OPENERS is the problem. Rahane and Rayudu are very to ODI, but those flat track bullies at the top are the reason for no victory in 8 overseas games, particularly after so called in-form home series.

  • on January 31, 2014, 12:16 GMT

    Nothing to do with middle, top or lower order MSD. You can only win matches in played in India. We do not NZ of all gave us a thrashing. Bangaladesh beat NZ comprehensively. Something is not right with our team is it. Perhaps if we play proper cricket we might get good at it. Embarrassed to be an Indian supporter.

  • hayer on January 31, 2014, 12:29 GMT

    Pujara is much needed in India top order. We have so many big hitters but need someone to hold one end to keep wickets in Hand. I would prefer Pujara over Rohit because of his consistency, temperament and hunger to score. No doubt Rohit is a good batsman but India can't afford to give him same amount of time to settle down overseas as much as he was given to settle down in India conditions. Management should realise that Talent is not everything. Biggest thing is how you many runs you score. Kambli was much more talented than Dravid & Ganguly. But he is left far behind. Sometimes I do feel that long failure has made Rohit bit selfish. He is not willing to rotate strike which slows down his SR and act as a bottle neck at the top. Sometimes he score more boundaries then Dhawan but still Dhawan keeps better SR by taking the singles. I am not blaming one person for this series, there are Raina, Dhawan and Ashwin as well apart from quicks. No need to mention Sir Ishant.

  • on January 31, 2014, 12:32 GMT

    It does not take a captaincy degree to figure out that you need a Rahul-Dravid alike at no 3 when india tours abroad. With strike rates of 85-90 and pulling the team along as others strike is important. Ganguly got it and used Rahul as his sheet anchor. Dhoni is really trying to slug it out with T20 and flat track bullies even in overseas conditions. Similar to Kane Williamson, India have Pujara, why was he not considered? Dhoni is rewarding loyalty and alignment more than content. His team cannot pull it off outside India. he has to first realize that.

  • on January 31, 2014, 12:34 GMT

    yes dhoni pointed out right thing.difference between ind vs nz in this series is middle order. but our bowlers did not bowled well as we expect from them. negative approach at the beginning of the innings is not negotiable. try to overcome that battle if you lose 1 or 2 wickets nothing will happen. momentum is good to follow the next batsmen.but that didn't happended in the entire series

  • on January 31, 2014, 12:45 GMT

    This is where the importance of Yuvraj, Sehwag lies. They bring so much into the table. They may fail in some innings, but the attitude, the aggression that they bring into the field, infects others and results in a much better and positive show.

    I feel India's fate was decided in the first few overs of the first ODI match against SA, where Rohit Sharma was literally afraid to even strike the balls of Dale Steyn. He showed no intent to play a single ball outside off stump, as if it was a test match. And that inferior attitude infected the whole team. We need someone like a Sehwag..who plays a no-fear cricket and never allows a bowler to get on top of him. Without such aggression, such results were expected.

  • ShanNachimuthu on January 31, 2014, 12:56 GMT

    With this current bowling attack India can not win matches even at home. Need to strengthen the bowling department. No matter how good batsmen you have with this bowling you can not win matches consistently.

  • on January 31, 2014, 12:59 GMT

    I am surprised with selectors and Dhoni. Why would they ignore a fine Player, Pujara. MSD, it is not nice to make less then intelligent decisions and then turn around and blame middle order.

  • sumgad on January 31, 2014, 13:02 GMT

    For someone who has such a high reputation in India, MS Dhoni has shown himself to be a below average captain. He made the job of Williamson and Ross Taylor so easy by not changing his bowling attack.Both Kate and Ross seemed so comfortable with unchanged Indian bowlers. He had to try out Amit Mishra. His field settings were devoid of any logic ..more reactive than insightful. All through the series, he blamed respectively his openers,bowlers or middle order. So who does this leave Indian team without blemish? In final analysis, India is not just good enough to play anywhere else except in the sub continent.Its batting skills are suspect and bowling below par. And captain too rigid and devoid of creative ideas.

  • SamRoy on January 31, 2014, 13:04 GMT

    Any way losing meaningless ODIs is not a big issue. I just hope Dhoni doesn't pick Ishant and Zaheer for tests. Losing tests 2-0 will be a big issue (and Dhoni should be sacked without delay if that happens but with his boss as BCCI President and soon to be ICC President doubt that will happen). If you pick Zak and Ishant India's bowling becomes basically 2 bowlers Shami and Jadeja and neither are they that good or experienced to take 20 wickets. Preferably India requires 5 bowlers but the only genuine pace-bowling all-rounder in the country is Rishi Dhawan and I still don't whether his batting is steady enough. So we have to go with 6 batsman and 4 bowlers in overseas conditions for the tests. The bowlers should be Bhuvi/Pandey (one of those two), Umesh, Shami and Jadeja. Aaron as back-up would have helped as well. Batting is fine though Gambhir should be reserve opener (and replace Dhawan if he fails) and preferably Saha/Yagnik in place of Dhoni in green pitches for tests.