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Dravid: Dhoni needs to take risks to win overseas

ESPNcricinfo staff

February 18, 2014

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Dravid: Dhoni needs to take risks to win overseas

Rahul Dravid has said that MS Dhoni's captaincy has been "defensive in critical situations". Speaking to ESPNcricinfo after the Wellington Test, which ended in a draw after India had been in a dominant position on day three, Dravid said Dhoni would need to take more risks to win Tests overseas.

"I think he [Dhoni] doesn't trust his bowling attack as much as I think he should," Dravid said. "I saw that even in the Test match in Durban, where he didn't take the new ball till 146 overs. In fact he was forced to take the new ball. He didn't trust his fast bowlers to be able to take wickets. He kept playing with the older ball because he wanted to control the runs. So I think that is a slightly defensive mindset that he's got into.

"I think he's got to realise this very quickly, that if he wants to win Test matches abroad, he's got to risk it all. He's got to take that chance that he's going to have to lose some Test matches. The only way you can win abroad is to take a few risks, take a few gambles."

Overseas, Dhoni has captained India in 23 Tests, of which they have won five, lost 11 and drawn seven. At home, his record is much better - 21 wins, three defeats and six draws. Asked if he should continue as Test captain, given India's upcoming Test tours to England and Australia, Dravid said Dhoni deserved a chance to set his record right.

"I've always seen this year of Indian cricket as these four big overseas tours, which is South Africa, New Zealand, England and Australia, with the World Cup next year in Australia," Dravid said. "Let's presume that Dhoni is going to be India's one-day captain and take India into that World Cup. I think he's earned the right to do that.


MS Dhoni walks back for 19, South Africa v India, 1st Test, Johannesburg, 2nd day, December 19, 2013
MS Dhoni hasn't won an overseas Test since June 2011 © AFP
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"In Test matches, I always saw these four Test [tours] as Dhoni's opportunity to redeem what has been a pretty poor overseas record for him as captain. He's achieved everything else. He's won one-day tournaments, he's won a World Cup, Champions Trophy, he's taken India to No. 1, he has a great record in India, [he] just hasn't had the results outside of India. And I think he deserves the right, the chance to play out this year, and assess it at the end of the Australian series. End of that series, we'll really know where Indian cricket stands and where Dhoni stands, both as a player and as a captain.

"But so far, look, there have been a few disappointments in the way he's not been able to win, I guess, two Test matches in the last four, [having] been in really really strong positions, but look, you can't always blame him. It also comes down to the quality of bowling attack that he has, and yes, so I'd like him to have an opportunity to be able to correct that poor overseas record."

Martin Crowe, the former New Zealand captain, said it might help India's chances of defending the World Cup if Dhoni steps down as Test captain and hands over the reins to Virat Kohli.

"The first thing I think you must do with any side, particularly a Test side, is you must pick the best team," Crowe said. "And then once you've picked your best team, you pick your best captain from that team. So I guess I throw out the question that if you didn't want Dhoni as your captain, then who would it be, and I think Virat Kohli is perhaps a little too young for that. I think he needs to get through the next World Cup.

"However, I would say that if India want to defend the next World Cup, I think MS Dhoni needs a rest somewhere, at some point, not necessarily from playing, but maybe it could be by not captaining the Test side for a period leading into the World Cup, to refresh him so that he can hit the ground running for that World Cup. So there's a couple of things to ponder there. I think he's an absolutely gifted player, a marvel at times, given all the formats that he plays, but I do wonder sometimes about how he regards Test cricket. Just a point that I'd like to throw in there. Overall, MS Dhoni is an incredible cricketer, and I think that the main fact is that he probably can't keep doing every format from here on in."

Dravid agreed that Kohli had the credentials to captain the side, but said it might be better for him to take over after the tours of England and Australia.

"I think that World Cup is going to be the watershed moment, and two big series in England and Australia, and after that I believe it will be time for [Dhoni], both personally and for Indian cricket, to assess whether it's time for a new man to take over," Dravid said. "Luckily, in some ways, we've got Virat Kohli, who's playing beautifully, so it's not that you don't have somebody waiting in the wings.

"You've got a young player who has, by all accounts, led before. He's led India Under-19 before, he's led Delhi before, he's led North Zone, he's got leadership experience. It's just that he needs to, like Marty [Crowe] said, establish himself little more as a player and by the time, come World Cup, with two more tough series of England and Australia behind his back, and hopefully with runs behind his back, I thInk he'll be ready to take over."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by AravindVatsal82 on (February 25, 2014, 12:39 GMT)

Dravid may be wright considering the fact the test cricket is being played in the recent years (5~7) where likes of newzeland pushing for wins under the conditions,irony to this indian bench strength has been not so good to back the pace bowling,where dhoni has to rely on the tiring old horse Zak or new fresh legged shami which is diffcult as a captain to build the pressure to produce a wicket at regular intervals & continue to take 20 wkts to win a test match,contrasting to this is feilding agillity to cash on 1/2 chances which goes down,as dhoni wrightly says Indian pace attack is not known as other department whihc are fired up unlike other asian southpaw pak,srilankan's where replacements has been genuenly good ofcourse with their own problems...with this BCCI has to invest more on pace bowling, overseas matches to be in contest of test cricket.

Posted by Oracle_Magus on (February 21, 2014, 7:36 GMT)

It's easy for Dravid to comment on Dhoni's Captaincy from the pavilion. One can always point out that the great Indian team in their full strength lost in the qualifiers of WC 2007 under Dravid. And MSD captained India to a WC victory in 2011. Dhoni is the greatest Captain India has ever produced and whatsoever anyone says can change that fact. A team is only as good as it's weakest link & there are lots of weaknesses that the Indian team and the management has to tackle. Dravid or any other Indian Captain, has the stature to comment that MSD's leadership is the cause of our team's failure. Virat is a great batsman & has good leadership qualities which needs to be nurtured. This Asia Cup will be a good foundation for him, but I believe that Dhoni should remain Captain for at least another three years so that Virat will be fully capable of handling the Captain's role.

Posted by PravinJP10 on (February 20, 2014, 10:09 GMT)

@ cricketsunami You must have forgotten about the test series victory in England in 2007, their first triumph in England since 1986. It was under Rahul' captaincy. FYI http://www.espncricinfo.com/engvind/engine/series/258452.html . He is such a fine talent who can talk and question about Dhoni's captaincy.when you have bits and pieces of cricketing knowledge and talk about RD, why can't a cricket genius talk about MSD's captaincy? So before you speak think twice. And with the little pieces of knowledge on cricket you cannot become a cricket guru. So know the game and players well.

Posted by Naresh28 on (February 20, 2014, 8:37 GMT)

GREAT ARTICLE to read. @arvind - DROPPED CATCHES could be added to your list as well. Test cricket is more about gritty players, Does India have those?

Posted by   on (February 20, 2014, 7:21 GMT)

what we can do or captain do when crucial catches were dropped to oppositions key batsmen and they went on to win matches. what about umpiring decisions. Better to accept DRS system.

Posted by praneethtz on (February 20, 2014, 6:16 GMT)

This is a very young team and it has be recognized that Indian cricket is undergoing transition where legends have left. During this time of team building, I think its only fair to give the team more chance. Looking at this team's performance in last two overseas tournaments it is not bad when compared to the performance with the stable team (star-studded) which struggled in England and Australia. Coming to Dhoni's captaincy, I dont think there is no one more efficient or worthy enough currently to replace him. Kholi is still young and needs more mentoring before he can handle captaining. Defensive or offensive depends on the bowling resources available at the hand. In India people are restless/fast food culture and have a very bad habit to bring down their heroes/achievements ignoring the realities and assessing dispassionately.

Posted by Jimmyvida on (February 19, 2014, 17:25 GMT)

As long as you play cricket you will drop catches. Which one of you played cricket and never dropped a catch? India's problem is not only dropping a lot of catches, their FIELDING is atrocious. That is putting it mildly. Go back and watch Ashwin bowling. Dhoni has a mid-on short to save singles and unless the ball is hit straight to the fieldsman he lets it pass. If it is hit softly they take two. Against NZ, that is no run. All the teams playing against India get easy runs like this all day. And you jokers have the gall to say it is Ashwin (bowlers)who leak runs. If you have ever played cricket you get sick looking at India's fielding.

Posted by RaviNarla on (February 19, 2014, 15:25 GMT)

Another thing is preparation before you go to series. You need to simulate the foreign conditions and practice in it. If you are going to New Zealand or England Have hard bouncy Green wickets in Dharmasala and practice there. The wind will be something similar to NZ and England. For SA and Australia go to MRF pace foundation and practice there. You also have McGrath there who can give some tips for the bowlers. Dubai has pitches of exact same type from 10 Different countries. Funny thing is Dubai is just an associate nation whereas India generates billions and still don't have one like that.

Posted by Coolcapricorn on (February 19, 2014, 15:18 GMT)

MSD shows total rigidity in sticking to certain players or in his team composition - despite failure after failure! We saw how his 2 spinners or just 3 seamers policy didn't work in SA in Tests or ODI's but despite this, he persevered with this in NZ too & we again got drubbed or threw away winning opportunities. He chooses these bowlers, then shows no confidence like he did in the Durban Test & handed SA a win + Kallis a farewell century! With a better captain choosing the right players, we could have won both the Test series in SA & NZ but ended up losing them due to him! Anyone would think he has a winning team the way he sticks with his favourite players & not give others a chance! He then spouts this rubbish saying 'he has a settled side, his bowlers has done well, he sees improvements' etc - probably sees this wearing rose-tinted glasses! With him still in charge, I can see us being comfortably beaten again in England & thrashed by a resurgent Aussie team. Time for change NOW!

Posted by RaviNarla on (February 19, 2014, 15:15 GMT)

Continued... But I would always say Indian Fielding and Bowling was scratchy. Even the best of the fielders dropped simple catches. I always sympathized for Srinath for the numerous catches that was spilled in slips. A team's bowling is as good as its fielding. And the bowling was sporadic too. They would bowl amazing for the first 6 wickets and it would take them for ever to claim the remaining four. It is just not MucCullum's partnership with tailenders. This has happened many times in the past which has led to Test failures. Key thing is getting the combination right. You cannot have a strong batting lower order at the cost of bowling. If top 7 cannot perform neither will your 8,9,10 and 11. For me 8 to 11 are Genuine wicket taking bowlers with some batting ability that can scratch around.

Posted by RaviNarla on (February 19, 2014, 15:15 GMT)

The best combination is 5 Batsman + 1 WK batsman + 1 Allrounder + (2 Fast bowlers + 2 Genuine Spinners) or ( 3 Fast Bowlers and Spinner). This is what Dhoni is striving for. Dhoni is trying to fill that allrounder with Jadeja and he also wants No. 8 to be a good batsman that can score 30-40 runs. Basically he wants 100 runs from the lower order for his top orders failure. The problem is the top 5 is not consistenly scoring 300 runs. When they do the team will be settled one. Remember during Tendulkar's Captaincy in the 99-2000 series in Australia and 98 series in South Africa. It was the same. Rahul, Ganguly and Laxman were all new. They too had failures at the start. India Started winning overseas only after the 2002 Natwest series. Everyone had more than 5+ years of test experience and the team started flourishing. Same here. This is a transition period. This too will pass.

Posted by Temuzin on (February 19, 2014, 14:53 GMT)

VSC011 : Dravid and Tendulkar commenting on any body's captaincy will be very funny. These two gentlemen had best Indian team in history (check the players they had) and still proved to be the worst captains India ever had. And you think they will comment on Dhoni's captaincy? On what basis? They are not all knowledgeable Indian fans who can freely comment on all issues. They know cricket and therefore know the real problem with team India, it is not the captain, it is lack of good bowlers which they can't produce in jiffy. And also they can't comment on BCCI's efforts to get two good bowlers.

Posted by TSJ07 on (February 19, 2014, 14:38 GMT)

Changing captain will be the first step in the right direction for WC15 in AUS just like what AUA board did with their legends Waugh brothers in the series also involving SA and NZ. AUS failed to qualify for the final and Waugh bro averaged 31-32 with the bat. That was enough signal for the CA to change these aging players and replace them with the likes of Damien Martyn.Remember what they did to us in final? Dhoni is not only selecting bad playing 11 but the way he treated Binny,it seems he is in problem with selectors,Binny's father being one of selectors.Dhoni may be livid why his more CSK mates are not being selected.Dhoni's removal from capataincy from ODIs and his removal from test and T20 side will be good move up first.Then we can observe Rohit every series and whenever he average in 30s in two consecutive series he should be dropped never to be picked again.He already got long rope.ISHANT MUST BE FORCED RETIRE.Next time he will perform in 2018.Hunt for pacers should continue.

Posted by rvndas on (February 19, 2014, 14:32 GMT)

Dhoni has put careers of players in jeopardy who were considered as captaincy material. Ex. Gambhir's name was taken during IPL5 and now he is completely out of the team. Please dont take Kohli's name as the next captain. otherwise we will lose another bright cricketer.

Posted by Zainnajam on (February 19, 2014, 14:22 GMT)

Gamble!? Look who is saying that. The all Time Indian's hero, Rahul Dravid. Now, tell Me, What the heck will you earn by Gambling? Win? Only that. But you Might the first person to say Gambling should be allowed. People learn by Training, Practice, Confidence. are These Things in store for the Indians? Nope. Gambling is the Way to do it. Have some Sense, Hero, Ur way Behind the World...

Posted by Lalz on (February 19, 2014, 14:02 GMT)

Contd.. So my choice for WC is Dhawan, Sharma/new player, Kohli, Pujara, Yuvraj ( AR), Dhoni, Binny, Mishra/Jalaj Saxena/Ojha, Shami, Aaron and a in-form bowler. This gives us extra one bowling option. Let Raina and Jadeja play in Domestic circuit and prove better. Also we need to keep away Raina, Jadeja and Ashwin from Dhoni for next overseas tour. Rahane as opener and Rayudu in middle order should be tried. We are mostly relied on Kohli, who also need some rest. So after Asia cup and IPL, we need to give him and other seniors like Dhoni some rest. After IPL its a test series with England on which Dhoni can rest and come back in ODI series. After test series Kohli can rest a bit. England and Australia series is what India can experiment and find real talents..

Posted by VSC011 on (February 19, 2014, 13:53 GMT)

Main problem of Indian Test team is our so called (successfull???) skipper. India lost all overseas series in recent past due to very uninspiring captaincy. We can't expect likes of Tendulkar, Dravid to comment in a blunt way on Dhoni's captaincy. I am very confident that selection committe will still persist with Dhoni irrespective of the back to back losses at overseas just because of Mr. N. Shri Nivasan. those fans who still believ in Dhoni please check out his away record with the Bat. Not a single captain in the modern cricket has such a poor record. can anybody explain what is his current role in Test team?? Neither he performs with the Bat nor his so called great captaincy is working.

Posted by ramli on (February 19, 2014, 13:17 GMT)

India failed in Eng and Aus because the so-called big-four failed to deliver (with RD as exception in Eng) ... Rahane was benched for log, why? Because, SRT was clutching to his place in ODIs ... Rayudu could not come into the team, why? Whom will you frop from the team? It is all easy to say MSD is wrong or defensive or anything ... the talent displayed is very little on all fronts, batting, bowling and fielding ... a captain can only be as good or as bad as the team ... MSD does not have a magic wand ... when VVS/RD miracle happened in 2001, we enjoyed it ... when NZoes it to us in 2014, we have to accept that NZ played exceptional cricket ... it is very early to blood VK as captain ...

Posted by vrkp on (February 19, 2014, 13:17 GMT)

As Dravid said MSD may still be our best bet to lead us in Tests. But he must be clearly told to be more positive and play 5 bowlers incl. one AR and not to be biased in favour or against certain players.

Apart from Dhoni, i can see the following as potential candidates for test captaincy:

1. Kohli - he may be everyone first choice after MSD. But i think he is as defensive as MSD if not more. In Zim when we played 5 ODIs, he never changed the team and never bothered to try out Rasool even for one game. 2. Rohit - Has great success in leading MI to IPL and CLT20 trophies and his batting improved. But he is too inconsistent in intl arena and it may backfire big time. 3. Zaheer - being bowler may actually help to set fielding according to the bowling. 4. Gambir - it appears he has become unwanted guest. not sure whether he will be welcomed by the team mates. Also, he may not even be selected again.

Posted by joelucky on (February 19, 2014, 13:09 GMT)

Dhoni for one more year? Any existing prospects for a genuinely quick bowling hope will be completely destroyed in that duration. Unless one of those bowlers in frustration bowls a snorter at MSD in the nets and nearly takes his head off.

Posted by Lalz on (February 19, 2014, 12:57 GMT)

India must go with 4 specialist bowlers ( 3 seamers + 1 spinner)hereon whatever the result is. Atleast 1 allrounder if we have bowling options in batsmen or go with 2 AR and 5 specialist batsmen. With Dhawan, Kohli, Pujara, Dhoni as sure shot players, we have to look upon other 3 slots. As WC is played overseas Jadeja won't be a good option for allrounder slot. Yuvraj is more suitable as he can deliver with bat and ball. Also Binny can be seaming allrounder. So left slot is of Rohit Sharma. If Selectors are yet confident on him, no need to look for another opener. If not we need to find someone from the upcoming domestic circuit who can be reliable on future with enough technique. KL Rahul is said to be a prospect with his technique. Lets look on the domestic circuit for the prefect one. In bowlers corner, available options are Aaron, Shami, Bhuvi, Vinay kumar, Rishi Dhawan, I Pandey. Lets see who all perform in domestic circuit. If in form, we should go with Shami and Aaron. contd..

Posted by Lalz on (February 19, 2014, 12:34 GMT)

With WC 2015 on doors, a captaincy change will be a bad move. Also only captaincy change will not do wonders to Indian team. With WC been played in green pitches, Dhoni would be as defensive as he is now. He will risk a bowler for a batsmen thinking India will be down at 6 or 7 wickets all the time. He is neither confident on batsmen nor is he on his two or three specialists on the team. Also not willing to go for a new face risk. This won't work in WC. Either we need to include better players than personal favorites or need to put confidence on specialists. India must go with 4 specialist bowlers ( 3 seamers + 1 spinner), Atleast 1 allrounder if we have bowling options in batsmen or go with 2 AR and 5 specialist batsmen. So before WC we need to give our bench players enough exposure in International level whatever the result is. Even if we go for a total loss in Eng and Aus with experiments, it gives a fair idea on how to plan for WC matches. (Contd..)

Posted by heathrf1974 on (February 19, 2014, 12:33 GMT)

The question is who will take his place? The most promising options are too young at the moment and it could damage their test careers. I think that is what Dravid is saying. Dhoni is the best option at the moment.

Posted by   on (February 19, 2014, 12:25 GMT)

Dhoni has long forsaken his right to captain the test team. A test captain needs to be really aggressive and try to take wickets at all times. If we had the bowlers to bowl teams out in one innings we could do it again. Sadly the ubiquitous strangling methods employed effectively in ODI/T20 are being replicated ineffectively in test matches. It is quite easy to recreate the conditions/pitches and outfields seen in all foreign countries over the vast spread of states in India. Thats the way to blood youngsters on pitches of all sorts and encourage Ranji trophy results over 4 days so that it becomes a natural instinct to try and take 20 wickets all the time. If the BCCI cannot make this happen we might as well give up our right to be a test playing nation and make a living out of IPL.

Posted by ThePacifist10 on (February 19, 2014, 12:18 GMT)

The opposition will always try to target Virat Kohli. The moment he gets out, half the battle is out. He needs backup.

Posted by SpidermanXI on (February 19, 2014, 10:55 GMT)

I am personally a big fan of Rahul Dravid but "being defensive at critical moments" is applicable to Rahul Dravid as Captain as well. In the 2007 tour to England, inspite of having a lead of over 300 runs, Dravid didn't enforce the follow on and choose to bat again just to secure the series lead. I believe its not just a problem with Dhoni but most of the Indian Captains of the past. Moreover, we need to look at our bowling resources before commenting that Dhoni is too negative. He doesn't have Mitchell Johnson or Dale Sten at his disposal to be an aggressive captain.

Posted by chapathishot on (February 19, 2014, 10:50 GMT)

No captain other than Ganguly has better record than Dhoni as an away captain and If we consider the wins in Australia ,South Africa ,England and Newzeland they have same wins at 2 .Ganguly has 11 wins out of which 6 are in Bangladesh and Zimbabue and Dhoni has 5 wins of which one is in Bangladesh.So with the bowlers at his disposal Dhoni has done really well,it is only our expectation comparing his one day wins.To compare other great captain Azhar has just 3 wins and SRT 0

Posted by   on (February 19, 2014, 10:18 GMT)

Before losing 4 consecutive away series....

he also won 5 consecutive away series...

Posted by Valavan on (February 19, 2014, 9:54 GMT)

Well said Dravid. He must captain the team for next 9 away tests to give a green signal to the board that he cannot win anything out of India.

Posted by HarrowXI on (February 19, 2014, 9:31 GMT)

If we dont change Dhoni as a captain. We will loose series in England and Australia. We wont able to defend WC 2015.

Personally I dont think dhoni will be sacked. In india we will only change after disaster. Selectors are waiting for disaster to happen and change dhoni & co(raina,rohit,ishant,zaheer,ashwin).

Indian team is like a car heading for a crash. Its a high time driver should be sacked before crash happen.

Posted by Percy3 on (February 19, 2014, 9:22 GMT)

Dhoni has had a miserable overseas record as captain but his experience is valuable and should continue into the next year at least. Kohli right now is too temperamental and is losing the regard of his peers and should continue as a batsman, not shackled by captaincy. One thing that Kohli has to learn is to respect the opposing players and show fundamental traits of decent human conduct.Otherwise he will be a poor ambassador for Indian cricket which role is as important as the ability to bat or bowl.

Posted by cric_fan123 on (February 19, 2014, 8:43 GMT)

@thomas libyh: when ganguly stepped down (or rather removed) there was no one who could top him or when smith was nominated as sa captain, nobody thought he had it in him to make captain, yet they did. problem with "no one is there" line of thinking is, there will be never be anyone good enough. there will be always be people who say he delivered world cups or his 200 against aus for next 10 yrs.

Posted by cric_fan123 on (February 19, 2014, 8:38 GMT)

cricketsunami : my friend thats like saying dont compare watson's bowling to other bowlers because he is not a specialist bowler. he is in the team as a batsman who can bowl. sounds absurd right? He is in the team to do a job - keep and bat. he is unable to deliver with the bat, I already quoted his overseas record and its abysmal. if you are talking about his indian record, yes it is phenomenal but then its like saying play S. Ramesh or Sanjay Bangar as openers as their Indian records are phenomenal, that is not what we need. If required, he can play as batsman on Indian soil but never on seaming overseas wickets.

Posted by ashankar on (February 19, 2014, 8:23 GMT)

@KiwiRocker- That's a bit harsh, dont you think?

Posted by   on (February 19, 2014, 7:04 GMT)

from1932 till now india has won only 37 tests outside india out of these 12in the subcontinent and4 against minnows like zimbabwe and its with most of the teams playing cricket the home and the outside record differs in a big way leaving aside the west indies from 1976 to 1994 and australia from 1995 to 2008 every team has been struggling as visitors

Posted by KiwiRocker- on (February 19, 2014, 6:28 GMT)

India is the only test playing nation that has managed to lose in Australia, in England, in SA, In New Zealand and to top it all off, they also managed to lose at home against England. Dhoni's comments are mildly amusing. India has managed to lose against 7th ranked NZ and Dhoni is talking about improvements. If process does not justify te outcome then process is flawed! India's so called best spinner is finished. India's fast bowlers were tonked by NZ for 700 runs....Indian openers are inconsistent. Pujara has started to fade away after much hype. Kohli promised a lot but delivered nothing. His century was thanks to umpiring blunder...I am stuggling to see what improvements? Players like Gambhir, Yuvraj, Raina have been discarded and India's overall cricket is on decline. If ICC rankings were fair then India will not be in top 5.If ICC was not being run by BCCI then India will be stripped off its test status. Top test playing nations at current form are: Australia, SA, England and Pak

Posted by Naresh28 on (February 19, 2014, 6:27 GMT)

DHONI is okay for ODI's as he can perform from the front. But when it comes to TEST cricket his stubbornness shows. The best example is his use of 4 bowlers - instead of 5. If one of the 4 is having a off day then what does it leave the bowling attack with? To get 20 wickets becomes a huge problem. We have players who warm the bench - they do not play the side games, any internationals or even cannot play domestic games to keep in shape. Umesh Yadav is an example.

Posted by buntyj on (February 19, 2014, 6:18 GMT)

author has been kind to msd - he has got the team he, bcci chief and selectors want and must therefore be accountable for its away performance - in which it squandered positions of advantage; save that the above may have preferred raina to rahane left to themselves tho i believe that even if pujara and rohit end up with higher test averages overall, in away tests (especially outside asia) rahane and virat will have better stats at the end of their careers; ishant took wickets in nz but only when conditions helped him, in rsa and nz when conditions weren't too helpful he again looked inadequate; but msd doesnt want pandey or rishi dhawan- maybe since they don't play for csk; tho aaron, vinay and binny may tour england; yadav , pandey and bhuvi not having captains confidence; basically no one looks at the fc strike rates over 2-3 full seasons of bowlers; if your strike rate is closer to 60 (or worse) than 50 in longform fc cricket over some time than its unlikely to improve in tests;

Posted by   on (February 19, 2014, 6:11 GMT)

There is no one in the Indian team presently who can tale over the captaincy so Dhoni needs to be retained. The problem is Dhoni's mates who make it to the team because they are Dhoni's mates and less for their Test cricket playing skills.

Posted by Sunman81 on (February 19, 2014, 5:38 GMT)

It's not just the defensive approach... It is the lack of trust on new members of the squad... - Ishwar Pandey didn't play a single match despite the woeful performance from other bowlers - Binny the allrounder finally got a game in the ODI in which he bowled only a single over and Ashwin batted ahead of him. - And now Raydu is warming the bench...

Conclusion: Wrong team selection caused all the problems so far!

Posted by sam_77 on (February 19, 2014, 5:20 GMT)

I totally agree with Aravind... He is so defensive and the team would not make much progress under him. We all know how long Shami had to wait... The day Ishant conceded 30 runs against Australia he was forced to try Shami and now he is the leading bowler.!! Dhoni is so used to playing in Indian conditions. His basic concept is to restrict the opposition from scoring runs till the spinners gets some turn. So he prefers medium pacers who is good at line and length. It wouldn't work out side India, but it is tough for him to take up that challenge. We all witnessed Mohit Sharma opening the bowling in South Africa!! That was one of the most shocking decision made by Dhoni. Remember we have benched Umesh Yadav, who was one of the leading wicket takers last time we visited Australia!!

We could see the similar approach even in ODIs. I know we don't have a perfect fast bowling allrounder. But no harm trying Binny. Playing two spinners in NZ/AUS ridiculous.. Perfect World Cup preparation !!

Posted by cricketanalyser on (February 19, 2014, 5:20 GMT)

I think its time to step down as captain for dhoni . Eveyone named him as Mr. cool .but he has proved himself as a captain in subcontinents,but not overseas. He does not have bagged anything till date as a captain . Because when he took over the captaincy from dravid india was having some great players young as well as seniors.As the seniors is out of the team indian captain is not able to find the eligible talent for the present team . Is he not able to tackle the ongoing pressure or is he doing something wrong which is not required except kholi and zaheer no one has displayed their interest. But Dhoni wants to continue with same team which is underperforming. Its too late to do or rectify some thing. As the worldcup is ahead he should be able to do some magic things right now. As per my view on way is to get the back the seniors in the team like yuvraj,harbhajan,gambhir which will give high morale to the indian dressing room or else try spotting the right talent in the team.

Posted by   on (February 19, 2014, 5:19 GMT)

India need to play with 5 (or at least 4) regular bowlers when traveling abroad. Dhoni should either repose faith in their batsmen or bowlers. Jadeja (even Ashwin or any other spinners we have at the moment) will be ineffective in these conditions. High time Zaheer and Ishant be shown the door. They have had enough. Zaheer is crossing 35 and even the greats were not threatening at this age. Try some new pack. We might still lose, but at least we can unearth some talent.

Posted by Alexk400 on (February 19, 2014, 4:42 GMT)

I want kohli to be captain in all forms of the game and Dhoni to be vice captain. Bring in DK as wicket keeper and let Dhoni play as batsman. He can help kohli in some ways especially dealing with media. Kohli is better than dhoni in tactics and showing heart. Also i really want to get rid of rohit sharma. i never seen anyone in india has given this many chances like rohit getting. He is not a good player in bouncy and swinging condition. Because of his lazy stroke play he gets exposed. I have to assume rohit sharma has godfather in BCCI circle to get this many chances and nothing to show. Pujara , Rahane had to wait for many many years to get a chance. Also time to dump murali vijay. I do not think he is consistent enough to be in Test level Dinesh karthik can open and he was instrumental in winning against england few years back. Dhoni always point at someone except himself. He is the common denominator in all overseas losses. India drew with nz because of dhoni's defensive tactics

Posted by MiddleStump on (February 19, 2014, 4:24 GMT)

Indians have a hard time dealing with the simple truth and prefer to live in denial. The fact is only world class pacemen and world class spinners win test matches. Kumble has retired, Zaheer has aged. So has Harbhajan who has likely played his last test. At best Ashwin and Oja are decent bowlers in India but they were shown their place by Swann and Panesar. Fans and so called experts talk about selecting this player or that player. But NO captain or coach likes losing. They know all the talent that is available. They see them daily in the nets and they are the best judges of current form, fitness and attitude. Making Kohli captain would be rewarding the most irresponsible player in the NZ series who was out to an atrocious shot in Auckland instead of guiding the team to victory and followed this by dropping McCullum on 9 with an attempt as if he was catching a frisbee on the beach. He sulks every time when given out. Dhoni is hardly shrewd but he may still be the best among the lot.

Posted by Analytical_Sathya on (February 19, 2014, 4:13 GMT)

Dravid, Please talk only about batting in general.Never ever give statement on BCCI or the current captain.

Posted by India_Keep_Roaring on (February 19, 2014, 4:10 GMT)

Apart from being a Captain, Does he possess any other skills which can merit a place in the current TEST side? Everyone knows the answer!!!!!!!!!

Posted by Sandt on (February 19, 2014, 3:32 GMT)

You cannot win test matches with bits and piece players. I don't understand Dhonis tactic as a captain for selecting his 11. You cant win test matches with players like Jadeja as main spinner.He is just a bits and piece player who is not proper allrounder.In test matches it is mainly putting pressure on the batsmen.We can see the AUS from one end Harris/Siddle put pressure and Johnson bowls out the team from next end. India don't have that kind of bowlers in this side.It doesn't mean india don't have these kind of bowlers available.But the selectors and team management don't want to take them.They still stuck with the old players like Ishant,Ashwin etc even if they are not performing.Now ishant has got extension to his career for another 2-3 years till dhoni captain the side.

Posted by   on (February 19, 2014, 3:31 GMT)

spot on...but dhoni is not up for it...he doesn't want to leave his group matws like raina jadeja I sharma etc...he doesn't have guts like you the wall to declare when the ao called god of cricket is 6 short of his double century. .or to ise spinner in second over of ODI to get rid of Au openers....hats offf Dravid. ..u have been a great inspiration for every true cricket lover

Posted by MaruthuDelft on (February 19, 2014, 3:31 GMT)

It is amazing that no one talks about 5-5-1 that is a 5 strong bowling attack. For the reason India winning in India India should not play just 4. It should always be 5-5-1. The reason is simple. Indian bowlers can't maintain intensity for adequately long. In India it should be 2 pacers and 3 spinners; away 3 pacers and 2 spinners. Always play the attacking game. This is risky but India has nothing to lose abroad and winning in India doesn't really count a lot. Only India performs well abroad India's reputation as a cricketing nation would grow in other countries. After such reputation India's home wins too will count. Now even India's WC win doesn't count. 1983 was a fluke.

Posted by cricket_ahan on (February 19, 2014, 3:15 GMT)

I agree with Dravid in that Dhoni doesn't appear to have much faith in his bowlers in overseas conditions. If not anywhere else, this is clearly visible in the sharp contrast in fields set at home and abroad. On Indian pitches, spinners (consistently a main-stay of Indian bowling attacks) have penetration due to helpful surfaces which assist turn. I think Dhoni does deserve the mantle of India's captain (as he is tremendously cool under pressure), but he needs to learn to try different things when initial plans don't work. And this is most applicable for trying new players when current ones are not hitting the mark - India is not brimming with fast bowling talent, but there are guys waiting for their chance who have displayed some form of ability - Yadav, Pandey, Unadkat, Bhuvi. Most of all, these other guys are younger and fitter, and more capable of lasting 5 days, something Zaheer and Ishant are finding increasingly difficult.

Posted by balaji28 on (February 19, 2014, 3:10 GMT)

If virat becomes the next captain he will give much of the opportunities to the same players he believe.This is the misake done by dhoni. while dhoni atleast have the capacity to be cool headed and bring calmness inside the team during tough situations while virat brings tension inside the team as we have seen during his captaincy stint with rcb.If virat becomes the captain he won't give opportunity to newbie as he has denied an opportunity to pervez rasool during zimbabwe tour.So a person with broad mentality like kapil dev should captain india as the person who captains the team should push up the confidence to other players.So until we find a permanent solution there should only be a interim captain but not a permanent captain.

Posted by khs_shk2000 on (February 19, 2014, 2:59 GMT)

Why we are lamenting on test loss? Anybody tells me when we have won the test series abroad? Don't count BD, ZIM Series. We were always abroad loser not a new thing forget it , chill... Don't worry BCCI will conduct some home series and again we will become Numero Uno No.1.

Posted by   on (February 19, 2014, 2:55 GMT)

I don't get this Dhoni bashing. It's not as if India didn't have a overseas Test problem before him. Granted, Ganguly was a better Test captain. But Dhoni isn't incompetent.

Posted by   on (February 19, 2014, 2:46 GMT)

Dhoni needs to be gone....now. He should have been dropped last year as Test captain. But it is high time now. If he has any semblance of dignity, he should resign straightaway. His poor, defensive and stubborn captaincy has cost India dearly.

Posted by Mr.CricketJKNotHussey on (February 19, 2014, 2:37 GMT)

Getting Gambhir back for captaincy could be an option but he is not in the best of forms. Problem is that Vijay does not seem to be able to hold his own outside the subcontinent either. If Vijay does not prove himself soon, Gambhir should be brought back and made captain. Yes, Kohli is the future, but he is a bit too young and a bit too temperamental. Don't get me wrong, it is his aggressive nature that makes him a great ODI player and will eventually make him a good captain. But he needs a bit more time to mature. So, getting Gambhir in for a year or so, and maybe resting Dhoni for a bit might do India good. Gambhir can be a proactive captain, and it will give a chance to someone like Karthik who can play pace well. Our batting will be beefed up, there will be a fresh change in the team mindset and who knows, we might just start winning abroad.

Posted by baskar_guha on (February 19, 2014, 2:36 GMT)

I think that India has two gaping holes -- their openers are not putting together a few big stands -- one is firing but the other isn't -- overseas that is usually a big problem. The other hole is India no longer has a bowler (pace or spin) who can get you a wicket -- Zaheer of old and Kumble were that, today's Zaheer and Ashwin are not that. It is hard for Dhoni to gamble with what he has -- I actually think he intuitively takes risks when he can afford them.

Posted by   on (February 19, 2014, 2:32 GMT)

if dhoni doesnt trust his bowlers den y he just keeping playing ishant sharma though he was among d wickets dis series but d amount of chance he has been given any othr bowler too wud have performed if given same chance hes nt attacking d way he used as a captain and talking about gud bowling attack india rarely had gud consistent bowlers during his captaincy still he was able to produce magic with his attacking and logical decisions. mr. dravid is ryt he needs to rest to decide wat he wants. if he wants gud bowlers den thnk ahead of ishant sharma try some other bowlers and wen he dnt want to change his attack den he shudnt blame his bowlers for nt being attacking for leaking runs dey r doin wat dey are capable of(leaking runs inconsistent) u cnt expct zaheer or sharma to do sumthng like a mj and harris

Posted by SanjivAwesome on (February 19, 2014, 2:23 GMT)

I disagree with Dravid. Dravid belongs to a generation of India cricketers who kept prolonging their stay past their use-by dates. He should stick to signing shirts at his old peoples home. Dhoni must be scrapped now, with Fletcher. We need to inject fear into our team after their lethargic fielding, pathetic bowling and below-par batting (Pujara, Rohit, Murali had forgettable test performances away from their home comforts).

Posted by DrNabarunGhose on (February 19, 2014, 2:10 GMT)

Mr. Dravid, I wholeheartedly acknowledge that you have made unquestionably significant contributions to cricket and I humbly disagree with you this time. Mr. Dhoni had enough time to "learn" and "deliver." It is time for him to step down and learn by observation now.

Posted by Alexk400 on (February 19, 2014, 2:08 GMT)

Dravid stop being analyst. You are not helping India. You are undermining everyone. This is why you should not comment on things. You are great player but bad analyst.

Posted by   on (February 19, 2014, 2:05 GMT)

true cric_fan123 msd is just keeping his place. he was underperforming than dinesh karthik but he always finds age as reason to get better players away and then keep a team of hitters who if take us near victory he uses opportunity to hit 50+ score and maintain average. All know that he batted at no.5 when India used to be at their prima. now it is all about kohli. if he plays well and get support then team wins else loses. you can never win with bowling of t20 in test because all great batsmen have best defences. they will never get out on defensive bowling and most important defensive fields. CSK will definitely ruin indian cricket. ganguly should be coach. gambhir captain of test side. rohit only in t20 and as captain and dinesh karthik as replacement of msd.

Posted by   on (February 19, 2014, 1:40 GMT)

Dhoni should be SACKED as captain. Pujara should be given the job. He will make a better captain than the temperamental Kohli.

Dinesh Karthik is not being selected even in the squad of 16, so that there is no competition for Dhoni. Bring Karthik in immediately.

Posted by Dinkepo on (February 19, 2014, 1:30 GMT)

India need bowling changes however fielding need to improve a lot, for this case MAC's drops by Virat&Ishant has been creat world record and individual record as first 3Tons for his nation,its not happened against Zimbabwe or Bangladesh it was happened against the team in world 2nd position therefore fielding equally important as batting and bowling, can't expect catches every over when quality international palyers batting line up so need to use the oppartunity.

Posted by Montez on (February 19, 2014, 1:21 GMT)

You are only as good as your last result !

I had bet that India will loose all the matches in NZ.

Zilch accountability for the Pay Packet from BCCI that was beyond the means of yesteryear Cricketers !!!

BCCI (cash cow) should pay them according to performances only ! You are talking in Crores now and when I left India 41 yeas ago it was Lakhs ! Tomorrow with the Indian currency on the verge of kissing Zimbabwe currency will be called something else !

No work - No pay is the motto here in NZ

Same should apply to these Incredible Indian Cricketers If they do not perform , they should not be paid...

VIZZY during my childhood always said - Catches are dropped - Matches are lost

Posted by prof_aks on (February 19, 2014, 0:52 GMT)

Thats true. Killer instinct should always be there especially in captain. But people will blame a captain if he takes risk and lose a match. Many of us will blame Brandom macc for taking very extra time to declare IInd inning after attaining all record. I think atleast this should have been done after tea on Day 4 to keep both options open, least India Win and most NZ win. Draw could be the almost no chance. But Macca wanted his Tripple (which perhaps any body would do practically) but he could have atleast played faster as they still had 5 more wickets to hang around. Any way test captain must be separate like most other countries do. This will allow Dhoni to focus more on other two formats. No one doubts Dhoni's talent as a batsman, a keeper he can use his best talent as a player in Test and captain in remaining two formats.

Posted by rajkumar_rajappa on (February 19, 2014, 0:31 GMT)

Many of us here, are over hyping our past overseas record and blaming Dhoni based on that. If my memory serves correct, in the last 10 years we have just won one test match against NZ in an away series.So by that yard stick, Dhoni has not done any worse. If you need to blame some one, then blame the batsmen(Vijay, Pujara, Rohit, Kholi, Dhoni) for not batting the NZ team out of the match in the first innings, when presented with the best of conditions. Also, give the credit where it is due, the kiwis really played out of their skin in both the ODIs and Tests in spite of not winning a single toss.

As for a Dhoni's captaincy, he could only do as much with this young team and he does not have luxury of strike bowlers and I feel the replacement bowlers would not have done any better.

Posted by Prakmca on (February 19, 2014, 0:27 GMT)

As long as Dhoni gives more importance to CSK players, India will never win.

See how the no. 6 and 7 batsman played when Mccullam was playing to save the match.

In the first test India had a chance to win, in the name attacking Jadeja got out (first of all he don't what is attacking batting), and the worst part is at the press conference Dhoni defended Jadeja and said he played right...Very bad Dhoni......

Posted by Snambidi on (February 18, 2014, 23:51 GMT)

MS.Dhoni indeed deserve another chance to captain Tests abroad.despite losses abroad ,India still maintains the 2nd Rank in all the versions. We can not ignore the will power of Dhoni. Every Captain in the world has committed mistake once or twice. Cricket is such a game that makes people commit errors unknowingly. So removing Dhoni & making Virat Kohli as captain for Test matches is not right at the moment. Instead what India should do is to include Yuvraaj Singh also in all versions along with Dhoni. Virat Kohli is a good player. But needs more experience to become Captain. In first Test India lost because partlyRohit & Kohli was responsible for the loss

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 23:48 GMT)

Where is the killer instinct We have to be aggressive at all times if you want to win abroad.

Posted by ModernUmpiresPlz on (February 18, 2014, 23:47 GMT)

Just quietly to all those that are focusing on the bowling attack rather than Dhoni:

I'm pretty sure the bowling attack is what it is because Dhoni is the captain. It's never going to change unless you get rid of Dhoni.

Posted by AvidCricFan on (February 18, 2014, 23:30 GMT)

India just relies too much on the past record of players than the current form. Based on the current form, ZK should not make the team. If Dhoni had tried Aaron, with his pace, he could have succeeded. Ishant has proved that he needs best of the bowling conditions to be effective. Shami still is evolving. I can understand his lackluster performance. Ishwar Pande with with his height could have been effective too. From pace, I don't see much difference between Ishant and Ishwar. Ishant's pace is down to 130-134k these days. When he debuted, he was bowling in 145k range.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 23:26 GMT)

@Tuan Asif Rassol. Your comments dont make any sense. IPL is T20s baby. Are you saying you do not watch or support Pakistan when it plays T20?

Posted by spinkingKK on (February 18, 2014, 22:43 GMT)

I don't think Dhoni is a good captain. He is lacking the main trait of knowing the strength of your own players. Captaincy shouldn't be blamed for every loss. More importantly, captaincy shouldn't take too much pride when the team wins either. Because, unless you have done some master moves, like Imran Khan used to do, the captain wouldn't have contributed much to the win. That is, provided the captain has done all the mandatory bowling changes and attacking/defensive field placement as the situation warranted. In Dhoni's case, he just doesn't do the bear minimum duties like making the necessary field placements and making the proper bowling changes. It's as if he was sleeping. He has had success in Indian conditions. That is only because the team performed well at home with all those star players in the side. Also, Dhoni himself is a terrific player under his own captaincy. I believe Gambhir should be recalled and lead the team in test matches.

Posted by only4sand6s on (February 18, 2014, 22:27 GMT)

It will be fair to say, "Dhoni must NOT gamble to win abroad" ?

Posted by The_other_side on (February 18, 2014, 22:26 GMT)

Dhoni is the best man to captain India in tests... At least NOW!!!

Next best in tests: is Kohli. But Kohli in New zealand has been pathetic for sporting and non sporting reasons...

He played a bad shot when first test was in balance. He dropped an important catch that had an overall bearing on second match. Finally every one watching live knows that he reacted unnecessarily in 1st innings of first test when correctly given out and tried to fool the umpire when he was incorrectly given not-out in 2nd innings of 2nd test.

All these facts show immaturity poor sportsmanship and impulsiveness that are not good for a captain!

While Kohli needs to calm down as a person, he has to show that he can play grafting innings too that defies attacking sportsmanship that he has come to known for!!

Thus Kohli is best served by giving more time...

Posted by OutCast on (February 18, 2014, 22:01 GMT)

Dhoni & India were forced to play NZ's game rather than their own game. The fast bowlers lack the venom that shuts down the batsmen. India is playing without a real spinner?? One more thing-- they are all full-time cricketers and dropping catches is unacceptable. BMac, Warner, Sehwag, Afridi etc always give chances and if you don't take it, they'll simply kill you before you blink your eyes.

Posted by randy1981 on (February 18, 2014, 21:53 GMT)

dhoni needs to step down. its time caz he cant think out of the box. the selectors have given him the plays but he likes to ccok with the same receipe. time for change

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 21:52 GMT)

Dravid will never say anything negative against anyone! He talks very diplomatically. so forget asking Dravid's opinion

Posted by randy1981 on (February 18, 2014, 21:47 GMT)

I know its very easy to critise our bowler but to some extent dhoni is at fault for what going on. he was given ishwar pandey and umesh yadav and both of them didn't receive a single match (I would think glenn mc grat knows a thing or two about bowling than dhoni and he praised ishwar pandy but dhoni says that ishwar pandey needs some more work)). india needs to go with 4 seamers and a spinner abroad because the work load is too much for 3 seamers. why cant we treat ashwin like mohammed hafiz? why cant he open the batting in tests and see where it goes. drop rohit sharma or use him as back up batsmen. In my openion the team is unbalanced. my team for test would be in order ashwin dhawan kholi pujara rahane dhoni rasool/jadeja (one out of the two) zaheer B kumar shami and ishwar/mohit sharma or umesh yadav. Mr dhoni if you want to win world cup again or start winning in test you need think out of the box. you need to give players chance

Posted by Temuzin on (February 18, 2014, 21:41 GMT)

cric_fan123: I hope you understand Dhoni is in the team as a wicket keeper batsman. You cant compare any wicket keeper batsman with your main batsmen. Among keeper batsmen Dhoni is still good compared to all who are keeping for other teams in the world. Heck Dhoni is far far superior than any keeper batsmen India ever had. He is the best keeper batsman in batting, catches and stumping in India. Check his records. He is an all time great keeper batsman for India. So don't compare him with regular batsmen. Yes he is good enough to be as good as any in the Indian team but then he should not bat at number 6 or 7 or should give up keeping and play as pure batsman. Then I will compare with any other batsman.

Posted by Alexk400 on (February 18, 2014, 21:28 GMT)

Idealist Dravid is always wrong again. Even though Dravid is greatest Test batsman ever produced by india , he is not a good anaylyst. He just sugar coat both sides so he looks good guy. You can still tell the truth and be a good guy. Just point the facts and not the ends. Meaning what dhoni 's mistakes not whether dhoni gets chopped or given chance again. Dravid should say , its upto selectors to decide usablity of dhoni not he should suggest dhoni should be captain of another series. Anyways as mentioned in another comment dhoni will continue what is good for him. Its his nature. he will not change his methodology for you or for country. Its upto selectors say enough is enough. Dhoni can not win overseas tour against Eng,SA, AUS and even NZ. I really want Kohli to be captain because young people always have no fear because they have no legacy to protect , they can go as high as they can dream. Time to dump dhoni!.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 21:22 GMT)

as for as bowling concern i think now india need a HITLER kind of man to coach them. Donot treet them as a star treet them as a bad students. And who else can be better then the great WAQAR YOUNIS with full powers of bowlers sellection and their money. in this way india can make test fast bowlers. so first give your bowlers fear of loos and make them work hard then you will be able to produce bowlers like WASIM, WAQAR, SHOIAB

Posted by mirandola on (February 18, 2014, 21:21 GMT)

For a country that has the richest (and so most powerful) cricketing board in the world to have a national side that is a laughing-stock around the world would make most boards think a bit. But not one ...

Posted by here2rock on (February 18, 2014, 21:15 GMT)

I think Martin Crowe has hit the nail in the head, Dhoni Needs rest. He has been a super player for India, he can contribute to Indian cricket for a few years in Test matches but India need fresh ideas overseas on difficult and alien conditions. He is not getting the best out of a very talented side.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 21:13 GMT)

You cannot blame Dhoni our blowing is to blame in these blowing friendly cricket if our blowing cannot take wicket than it real shame their is no aggregation in our blowing.I see main reason behind this is because we dont have good blowing coach .look at good blowing side like SA have Allan Donald or new-zealand they have Shane bond or any other side these are young coach because they know today's cricket. our blowing are not that bad it just they have not guided properly bring some like Anil kumble or wasim akram than you will see the change and even in batting make some one like Dravid who is most successful Indian batsman in overseas . we must give these young side a chance even Aus where going same face but now we see what they are . our side has showed that in ODI we good.

Posted by Jimmyvida on (February 18, 2014, 20:51 GMT)

Dravid should not worry, Dhoni will be captain of India as long as he wishes. If anyone thinks differently let me know.

Posted by KrikIndFan on (February 18, 2014, 20:47 GMT)

Dhoni is the best limited overs captain that any team in the world would love to have. Test cricket is a whole different thing and he has not been able to accomplish a major win overseas. He needs to give away a bit of his responsibility atleast for the test matches where not only he can groom and teach the other guy but also be a better batsman than he already is with less burden in that format

Posted by stumpedlloyd on (February 18, 2014, 20:46 GMT)

India seriously need some good fast bowlers and dangerous spinners. Though why Umesh Yadav didn't play in any tests in New Zealand is beyond me. The sad part is this Indian team is going to tour England, probably get beaten and the numskulls who run English cricket are going to think all's well with English cricket. As much as I support English cricket, I really hope India goes over and thrashes England this summer. So, come on, India, pick some fiery pacemen who can frighten the English batsmen.

Posted by rhtkumar672 on (February 18, 2014, 20:37 GMT)

Its so astonishing to see so many swords pointing on Dhoni. Okay, i agree he's a bit defensive in the test match but its really our bowling that needs to be taken care of. No captain can do any wonder if our bowlers don't have skills to perform. Ask any out of form player to play against India and he will score tons of runs against them.

I have been following Indian cricket for 20 years, havn't come across a single bowler that intimidate the opposition team like Steyn or MJ. Irfan promised a lot but was plagued with injuries. Ishant, Sreesanth, RP Singh also followed the same path.

What we have in reserves are Ishwar pandey, Umesh Yadav, Pankaj Singh. I don't see them performing better than the current crop. Its upto BCCI now to make bouncy wickets in India otherwise we'll always blaming the captain for the loss instead of addressing the real problem.

Posted by cric_fan123 on (February 18, 2014, 20:19 GMT)

For guys who keep complaining about bowling options, please, please tell me what does a bowler need to more than reduce the opposition 5 wickets down? There are swipes which will go over WK head, nicks which go to 3rd man boundary. That happens, and there are times when the no. 6/7 will score a century even with that. Arent we already loosing matches with the defensive mindset? Whats the harm in attacking and loosing? Then there was last test match, we had two days, two whole days!! There was absolutely no need for hit or get out by him or Jaddu, havent they learned anything from Faf, their CSK mate? Then there is a school of thought for Dhoni, the batsmen. Had it been Tendulkar, Dravid or Laxman this same guy would have howled out about them under performing. Between 2010 and SA tests, Dhoni had played 15 tests, averaging 26 while scoring 685 runs overseas. That speaks volumes about his utility in the team. IMO people should give up on India winning overseas tests until he resigns.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 20:03 GMT)

IPL have produced cricketing butchers in India.Gone are the days where you find Players like Tendulkars,laxmans,dravids,gavaskars,Amarnath etc who are technically correct Batsmen.Todays Indian cricketers don't have that kind of temperament.Indians once had the best spin attack in the World,but today with IPL spinners are murdered and made extinct...Shame!!!.With commercialization of cricket the quality had gone down.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 19:57 GMT)

I still maintain that Dhoni is a horrible captain in all formats. Its just that he is lucky to win even with bad decisions like playing piyush chawla and sreesanth in World Cup. Even then I maintain he is better than Virat Kohli who has no temperament and and has thrown the match away due to poor shot selection in IPL as well as for India. I believe Shewag or Gambir can be other options but they are not in the team. So its best from India's point of view Dhoni continues to lead till 2015 WC and then he can continue his dream run of CSK. Selectors should step in and take wise decisions, if you give any team 4 such bowlers its tough. Batting alone will never win matches. BTW Kohli was the culprit this match dropping such a simple chance due to his complacency. Groom bowlers and groom someone like Rahane or Pujara to be the Captain. For now Dhoni is the best problem India can have as replacing that problem will cause only more disaster.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 19:47 GMT)

india should play 4 fast bowlers to have a shot at winning the team we have now just lacks that killer instinct. look at mj he scares opponents with pace.so india need to build a few fast bowlers before wc

Posted by rdr_1019 on (February 18, 2014, 19:46 GMT)

India is a huge nation with every kid in the nation wanting to play the sport for the country. We have the talent at domestic level who perform throughout their lifetime and will never get a look-in for a national call-up. What I suggest is India should adapt what Australia had done in the past. India have enough talent pool that they can have 3 different teams for all 3 formats. If India considers this strategy, it will be more fair to the domestic players who perform and are capable of representing the country. Each and every player have their own game which could be sorted for different formats. For example, Robin Utthappa has immense talent and could do wonders if given chance in T20 format. Same applies for someone like Ahinav Mukund, whose talents are well suited to Test Cricket. If India can streamline these talents into different formats, it might work wonders and most importantly, it will give a chance to the talent at international level instead of just domestic competitions.

Posted by Indiaforever on (February 18, 2014, 19:45 GMT)

Dhoni definitely should resign in tests. In ODIs I don't mind his captaincy although even in ODIs away from home, we have been very poor recently. I would also say that he should either give up the gloves and focus on his batting technique to stay in the test team because at the moment it is only his captaincy which keeps him in the team, his batting is not good enough away from home and there are better keepers in India that will play a fighting innings like BJ Watling did and won't throw their wicket away.

Being defensive when you are in front of the game against any opposition is stupid and this is what Dhoni has done over the last 3/4 years. We need a change. We have much promise in our team, both batting and bowling, but we need to pick the right team which Dhoni fails to do too.

Posted by suman2 on (February 18, 2014, 19:44 GMT)

Srini-Dhoni combo must go. Dhoni should concentrate only on limited overs matches.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 19:35 GMT)

i think its time to bring back some old guns like gautam gambhir. dhoni must be replaced as test captain as he seems to have lot of pressure doing that.. gambhir can and must replace vijay as member and dhoni as captain.

Posted by Rjraza1 on (February 18, 2014, 19:29 GMT)

Dhoni still deserve to be captain once he got right bowling combination. With this bowling unit i dont think india gonna win a serious abroad. Specially when you go with eight batter's and only three bowlers.Poor team selection cost india!

Posted by Alexk400 on (February 18, 2014, 19:27 GMT)

I think most of you misunderstand why players always defending than tell the truth. Because if you tell the truth you will get chopped. Dhoni is just protecting his spot as well as others. Its simple. What do you expect them to say ? we suck?. I think the whole BCCI setup there is not even single guy tell it like it is. May be only ganguly has guts to tell the truth if it is beneficial to him. :) Ofcourse he do not like dhoni that may be reason. We have to get rid of dhoni from Test matches completely. We need people who go for win not protecting their legacy. People should remember dhoni is never afraid to lose , what he is afraid is though if he change team and change tactics and if india lose still , he will get chopped. That is one and only reason he never make changes now or in future. People say he do not confidence in his bowlers. That is not 100% truth , it is just that things can go wrong even if you make changes , then he put in himself be target of attack from his enemies

Posted by CricFanKrish on (February 18, 2014, 19:23 GMT)

Dravid is absolutely right. This may not be the right time to change the captain. If so, it should have been done when the seriei (plural for series?) were played in India. To appoint a new captain whoever it may be, with overseas tours coming up may not be the right move. I just hope Dhoni does some pondering/soul searching and overcomes his defensive mindset.

But then you can't please anyone. It could so easily have been 2-0 if Dhoni had attacked. It could have been 1-1 as well, but with the bowling not really even among the mid field of the total cricketing nations it is not difficult to see why he did that. Also, the lack of a spinner who can do well overseas is hurting us big time.

After the seriei of England and Australia, we should look at appointing a new Test captain. Virat definitely has the credentials. Pujara could be his deputy. MS should lead Team India in the ICC World cup.

Posted by Dysan25 on (February 18, 2014, 19:23 GMT)

Like the rest of the 99.999% of Hardcore Rahul Dravid Fans, I too disagree when Rahul says that Dhoni deserves another year as test captain :) .. .. but I understand that he has pinpointed the actual flaw in Dhoni's leadership (i.e, not just being defensive, but not trusting altogether), which is alarmingly surprising for someone of Dhoni's stature .. .. I hope we don't again end up in the age-old problem of .. who's next ? will it work with XYZ player ? nobody's fully prepared (.. because we have not given the right conditions for grooming, but it's fine till we put up our hands and deny that fact ) .. etc ...

Posted by iceaxe on (February 18, 2014, 19:07 GMT)

If Dhoni relinquished the captaincy, I think he would be an even better batsman than he already is. A scary thought for the opposition.

Whether Kohli or someone else, just make sure they don't give the team positions to their cronies in the same IPL team, and overlook the other talent in the pool...

Posted by Temuzin on (February 18, 2014, 19:02 GMT)

Well I pity all these so called experts throwing half baked knowledge on fans and trying to push some cosmetic changes such as bringing in a new captain. They and every fan of Indian cricket must realize that you cant milk a stone. Our bowling sucks and their replacements suck bigger than the original bowlers. In this scenario India will lose all the ti9me every time no matter who is the captain. Once captain is changed then fans will cry to throw that new man out because bowlers will suck and will not be able to defend any score. So India should do two things: 1. change the coach and bowling coach. Bring in some one who can work with existing bowlers.2. Find some new potential bowlers and groom them in an academy. Get 100 potentials and try to train coach and find 2 good ones. Then with our batting any captain will win. Unless that happens you will be changing captains for the sake of changing some thing.

Posted by fguy on (February 18, 2014, 19:00 GMT)

India haven't won a single test match overseas after msdhoni spurned that opportunity in Dominica against WI in 2011. Cricket Karma?

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 18:45 GMT)

Dhoni doesn't deserve a place in indian test team. He should be replaced by Karthik. Can any of Indian cricket fans tell me our selectors consider Raina, Rohit Sharma, Shekar Dhawan better than Badrinath? For what reason is Bardinath ignored from Indian team? . I seriously doubt Dhoni-Sreenivasan-CSK lobby is ruling and destroying indian cricket.

Posted by Hello13 on (February 18, 2014, 18:42 GMT)

We need to keep things in perspective. In the last few years, India haven't played the likes of Bangladesh, Sri lanka, pakistan etc away. India would most probably have won games there. Its like AUstralia, they can win games in SA, where the conditions are practically the same as in Aus, but they couldnt win a match in India.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 18:41 GMT)

India has lost yet an away series...Dhoni's defensive captaincy...Woes of Indian Bowling...Everything will be forgotten when IPL circus begins...By the time England tour starts..India will be found wanting in troubled waters yet again....Dhoni cant be sacked till WC and that would put huge pressure on Virat with Aus & Eng coming up...so a big No...The only option is to sacrifice few test losses...try different bowling combinations...in the mean time middle order can be strengthened...Indian team can be Re-built...no other way out!!!

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 18:37 GMT)

Mr. Dravid, We aren't going to continue losing tests after tests in ENG and AUS. Dhoni must go. He has overall good record of captaincy in Tests . 26-14. He mustn't ruin it by losing 8 test matches again against ENG, AUS, like Sachin partially ruined his batting avg. by being too adamant. Dont know if selectors have the guts to sack him from Captaincy.. Again We should play 5 bowlers, we badly need a fast bowler and we dont have. Dhoni feels if we play 4 fast bowlers our batting would be weak which I believe is a valid point since our batting line is still inexperienced, we dont have fast bowling allrounder. So I guess he should play both Jadeja and Ashwin and 3 fast bowlers overseas. If pitch is too much conducive to fast bowling play another fast bowler and drop jaddu/Ashwin. I am substituting Vijay by Ashwin who has almost same if not lower Test batting avg, and abilities compared to Ashwin.Mishra/Ojha aren't outstanding nor all rounders so can only be played in India

Posted by JonhyDwalk on (February 18, 2014, 18:30 GMT)

I also find all these press conferences are scripted 1. Ashwin saying " i am bowling really well " 2. Pujara saying " we are taking good catches" after dropping some critical ones. 3. Dhoni never admits his wrong team selection. Either these are scripted or these guys don't have self realization of whats happening. If players don't agree that they are not playing well, then its even a tougher proposition to overcome. Seems they set their goal not so high to even compete at this level. If you don't win,nothing can be good!

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 18:29 GMT)

@usman mushtaq..you say that misbah is not a great captain ?? really ?? he has lead his team from the front...the stats show that...beating nzl in nzl , westindies in westindies,india in india,south africa in south africa,whitewashing the then number 1 side, and has performed himself to achieve those victories...he is pakistans best captain after the great imran khan....and if u say he had the advantage of a strong bowling attack then he also had a disadvantage of a weak batting unit...the period when he took the reigns,the team was under immense pressure...they cant play at home too..no matter how much u call a place ur home...the real home is alot different..which also disadvantages him..overall misbah is a great captain..attacking when required while defensive when needed too..

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 18:27 GMT)

I agree with the fact that dhoni s captaincy is a bother but his batting and keeping skills are the best that India has right now( maybe dk comes very close) ...contrary to popular belief he s not a bad test batsman... he has a better average than haddin maybe a couple below prior ... he just needs to take a break as Crowe has said..having said that I don't think kohli has shown leadership skills on the field - he s too temperamental... gambhir was a fine candidate but he was shunted out by dhoni (feel sad for him) pujara s playing only tests so even he can't come in... probably kohli is the inevitable option but I feel gambhir should be brought back and given the captaincy in tests...

Posted by Anubhav-the-Experience on (February 18, 2014, 18:27 GMT)

Miss ganguly at times like this.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 18:27 GMT)

India need to reform the team, they should be aggressive and should be held responsible for their play. Money is making players mad and in that madness, they are not giving 100%. Though i am not fan of dhoni from starting, I don't know why he is called best captain or captain cool. Why the hell he is allowing players like ishant, rohit, raina, ashwin to play in playingXI. They perform once in a year and for that, they are kept in the team. I think Ranji player are better than these 4 players. Of trillions population, we don't have one bowler in international level, who can turn the match by his own. It is really sad. Rohit, ashwin and raina can't play in AUS or SA or ENG or NZ or WI which is well known to each and every team and indian selectors

Posted by wajidahmedkhan456 on (February 18, 2014, 18:20 GMT)

1.first of all dhoni needs to pick right balance team from available squad.his strategies should be according to the conditions, not the way we play india with no genuine spinner in the side because where ever india have won test match away from home in the 2nd innings our spinner have played big or good support role. india most definitely needs a leg spinner albeit a bit expensive because whichever team you play against have at least 6 right-handers. and india should keep their test bowlers and spinners away from limited overs cricket and bcci should look after players i mean amount of matches they play there is high chances a player might get dried out mentally.

Posted by thinkgood on (February 18, 2014, 18:16 GMT)

Both Indian sports media and fans are immature. With this young team you have only lost 2 test - one in SA and one in NZ. The ones we lost in England and AUS are with the older players - Sehwag, Sachin, VVS, Bajji , Dravid and Zaheer. So give this team and the captain some time to build and start winning in due course. It will happen but with this kind of immature attitude there is no hope for Indian cricket. Stop living in the past and live in the present.

Posted by InsideHedge on (February 18, 2014, 18:12 GMT)

Dravid as an analyst has a lot to learn from Martin Crowe. If you're too afraid to criticise on account of either your personality or the fact that you played with some of these guys only recently then you shouldn't be doing the job.

Posted by Chaitanyareddy90 on (February 18, 2014, 18:11 GMT)

Cool guys after world cup dhoni can be retaire from all three formats. It's damsure,pakka,100%

Posted by Ind_Cricket_fan on (February 18, 2014, 18:08 GMT)

The truth is, irrespective of whoever is tried as the captain for this Indian team,the results will be the same.So stop blaming Dhoni and try to select bowlers who are capable of taking 20 wickets.

Posted by Indian_Observer on (February 18, 2014, 18:04 GMT)

Let's face the truth. There have been major blunders made by Dhoni while captaining overseas right from team composition to strategy and on field intensity. While a lot has been already said about Dhoni's captaincy away from home, his captaincy in home series too he has been found wanting at times...On a turning Mumbai pitch (where Swann and Panesar bowled superbly and won the match for England) Dhoni insisted on bowling Ashwin, Harbhajan, Ojha round the wicket basically taking away the LBW out of the equation and that too without a silly point...Incredible!!!

Posted by wapuser on (February 18, 2014, 18:02 GMT)

Mr.Dravid, Are you saying that it's ok for India to continue losing in test matches for another year? What's wrong with trying a new captain?

Posted by thunda.masala on (February 18, 2014, 17:59 GMT)

It beats anyone's imagination why a captain would keep winning the toss and continue asking the opposition to bat. It is the defensive state of mind that makes him do it. It is true that he does not trust his bowlers and loads his batsmen with super-heroic tasks. If Dhoni does not trust his bowlers, then he should ask the selectors to find him the best and go on playing some 'normal' toss-decisions. In any case, he is not winning. As readers have been saying here on this forum that he cannot expect different results by doing the same thing over and over again.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 17:56 GMT)

Dhoni and Fletcher must be really thick skinned as they show no sign of quitting their respective positions after such shameful performance past 3 years. Definitely we Indian cricket fans deserve much more than repetitive remarks like processes and right areas after throwing away games.

Posted by Cover.Drive on (February 18, 2014, 17:55 GMT)

Dhoni needs to go as captain, and possibly from the Test quad. He is too defensive and hands over the advantages to opposition almost always. Need a decent all-rounder who can do the job of the 4th seam bowler. Need a quality spinners, the CSK boys are no good. Mishra, Ojha or someone else, who can take wickets.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 17:54 GMT)

What ever happened is gone. What should be done? ? We need to look ahead before we become a laughing stock. Hence first we need gambhir back in all forms. Yuvraj and bhajji back for odi and bhajji for tests too . Next for God's sake please relieve Vinay and Rohit. Kindly get back manoj tiwari and also binny as a Odi all rounder

Posted by BnH1985Fan on (February 18, 2014, 17:48 GMT)

Speaking of Kohli, in both matches he was a factor in India's inability to win. On the last day in Auckland, with he and Dhawan seemingly in control of the chase, he let up and got out to a "delivery that did not deserve a wicket" (sentiments expressed by Cricinfo commentator). In the Wellington test, he dropped McCullum early in his second innings, and the rest, as they say, is history!

Posted by JonhyDwalk on (February 18, 2014, 17:47 GMT)

With due respect to Dravid, this attitude has been the problem of Indians/Indian sports persons.We don't have the killer instinct, and the ruthlessness like the Australian team. Even in Dravid's statements, he was not ruthless in his comments. I haven't seen any team from 90/5, having almost got the match under the wraps,lose its position like we did in the last test. I hate when i hear ..oh he played well, soaked in pressure ..bla bla..We missed a pacy bowler which could have made a huge difference in cleaning up the tail.We could not produce one unplayable delivery during that partnership.Also, you can't be a great team without a front line spinner or a wrist spinner. Its about time we have some new mind leading the test team. It has become so predictable with Dhoni.(even his reasoning and press conference)

Posted by techie77 on (February 18, 2014, 17:46 GMT)

I have to disagree with Dravid on this one. Dhoni has been given the reins for the last 4 away tours and has not come up with a single win. We just need to accept Dhoni is not good enough to be a Test captain outside India. Great captains make average attacks look better with their plans. Take the case of NZ, under Mccullum's aggressive captaincy & planning their average attack looks much much better than Indian one. Need to start a fresh chapter with Kohli as Test Captain. Dhoni can focus on one-day and defending the next world cup. Also, India needs to see if Fletcher is adding any value. Look at the way boof transformed an underperforming Aussie team under the aggressive captaincy of Clarke.(Dont give me Johnson excuse. Clarke was still aggressive when they lost in India 0-4).

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 17:42 GMT)

Hey is dat dhoni hw is solely responsible for the loss just remember we supported him when he won world cup for us who bought in new talent in the team just b patient give him some time let us til d end of next 2series

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 17:41 GMT)

he does not trust. that is why in fast bowling condition. he want jadeja. and umesh yadav ishwar pande warming benches. any ways this attach gave 500 more runs what difference does it make you play umesh yadav or ishwar pandey. or rather why need rohit sharma or one extra batsmen - when batsmen themselves fail.

Posted by StreetView on (February 18, 2014, 17:41 GMT)

The main problem with Dhoni is his persistence with perennial non-performers like Rohit,Ishant . Given how badly they have played all these years they wont make it to any International XI. When you dont select your best 11 , you lose. But the real issue is we simply dont have the bowlers who can take 20 wickets on ANY wicket. India won under Ganguly , coz we had the superb Kumble, a fitter Zaheer and a decent Harbajan. Now we have none. Even Ponting or Smith wont win anything with these bowlers.

Posted by Jaganplus on (February 18, 2014, 17:37 GMT)

No. Indian cricketing community is insular (No offense Mr. Dravid). It's like asking wall street to regulate itself. I wish Dhoni goes from tests.

Posted by LAKingsFan on (February 18, 2014, 17:35 GMT)

After all new captain will bring fresh ideas. The worst that's gonna happen is India losing abroad test matches but it's happening already.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 17:35 GMT)

I would really want to go with shami, Umesh, Aaron, binny and ojha /or any other good spinner... playing eleven should be if everybody is fit : dhawan, muruli, pujara, kohli, rahane, binny, dhoni, ojha, Umesh, shami and Aaron

Posted by LAKingsFan on (February 18, 2014, 17:34 GMT)

Let's accept it's Dhoni's inability to lead test cricket team. He's a great ODI/T20 captain but not a great mind when it comes to test cricket. He's too defensive and thinks wickets will fall by itself. Agreed,we're not the best bowling unit out there but still you gotta utilize the potential of the players you got. Looks like Dhoni knew this will be coming one day. That's why he wisely kept all the senior players out of test team. When Gambhir was in form, he was touted to take reins from Dhoni in test cricket. But, Dhoni's politics and Gambhir's ill form decimated that talk itself. We can try Virat Kohli meanwhile strengthening our bowling unit.

Posted by adityafunda on (February 18, 2014, 17:32 GMT)

it's ok. good strategy by bcci and co to get number of tests reduced outside subcontinent. india only loses 1-0 these days coz it's just two test series.

and anyway, there is always an asia cup upcoming on great "sporty" wickets to regain form

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 17:31 GMT)

India should drop Vijay and play Rohit or Rahane at the top. Include another seamer instead of Vijay. Considering India's batting is its strength, we should be confident to play with 6 batsman only. Playing 5 bowlers can help India a lot and India may find it the best combination to win in Tests

Posted by Rags57 on (February 18, 2014, 17:24 GMT)

I believe Dravid is soft pedalling the issue of captaincy. He needs to call a spade a spade. While there is no two ways about his test captaincy record abroad, Dhoni's one day captaincy abroad has also been abysmal with no wins both in SA and NZ. He has had the luck of the coin in all these games and yet failed to deliver. He has not played the best team always and who else but he is responsible for that. He does not seem to hate to lose which is very critical for a captain. The Mr. Cool image was good when India needed some stability but now we need someone who can take good decisions, can inspire the team and be aggressive as a captain. Dhoni does not have any of these traits so time for a change and handover to Virat. Who knows - he could be India's Greame Smith!!

Posted by Vitruvius on (February 18, 2014, 17:24 GMT)

Dhoni should continue as the ODI captain, but not as the test captain. He is too passive and looks hapless when situation becomes desperate. I don't put the entire blame on Dhoni though, because India has the poorest fast bowling attack in the world. God knows what BCCI sees in Ishant Sharma to have persisted with him since eternity. I say this regardless of the 5-wicket halls he took against NZ. The 2nd innings showed just how ordinary a bowler he is. Regarding spinners, India should play leg spinners outside India not finger spinners.

Posted by ab_cricket on (February 18, 2014, 17:23 GMT)

I like dravid but completely disagree on this one. I think he should be more responsible with his statements as all who love cricket take his words seriously. this statement smells of old camaraderie shared by them and is totally partial.

Posted by Cobra0077 on (February 18, 2014, 17:20 GMT)

I'm not a Dhoni supporter, let's back off & take a look. Tactic's, strategies, etc. have a role to play in every event. let's look at the facts a) Indian batsmen(most) are not accustomed to play on neutral pitches b) Both Indian pace and spin have not developed that killer instinct bowling on batting friendly Indian pitches. c) Diet & fitness needs to improve. Given present players no Captain or Coach have the tools to use strategies taking the team to a higher level. India is the only cricket playing country that cannot develop dominating fast bowlers. Indian spin level has sunk since the time of Pras, Bedi and Chandra, who were backed up by Venkat and they were many more who could step up. ICC has to step up & control the International series (Test), a plan has to be set so that in a given number of years all international cricket teams (say the top 8) play against each other both at home & tour. Also ICC should step up & have some uniformity in the pitches.

Posted by Patrick_ on (February 18, 2014, 17:20 GMT)

It is not like India have a Mitchell Johnson or Steyn to attack all the time. In my opinion Dhoni has been more attacking this series than the many of the previous series' because his bowlers were good except in the first innings of first test. But the result is the same. India have been historically poor in overseas conditions, and needed all the batting and bowling stars in full pomp to win or draw a series overseas. It is going to be the same unless we develop a Wasim or Waqar.

Posted by asiacricket1234 on (February 18, 2014, 17:17 GMT)

I dont know why some people are blaming Dhoni. he cant take 20 wickets for his team. Indian bowlers are club level bowler. If they cant take wicket thats not Dhoni's fault. Also now that young bowlers of India knows that as long as they can bowl 125-135km and keep run around 6 in a over they'll be able to get a lucrative contract in IPL. I think they dont even try to improve themselves to test quality as they can earn a lot of money by being mediocre and IPL also bring sponsors and chances to get into Indian team so more money and exposure for them. Give Dhoni a year or 10 or even change the captain but with this bowling they are not gonna win any test out of India

Posted by MyOpinion on (February 18, 2014, 17:09 GMT)

Two main reasons for INDIA's loss in SA and NZ 1) CATCHING. With barely 4 bowlers (which includes 36 years Zaheer, inconsistent Ishanth and no proper spinner) if you drop catches you can never win matches abroad. Maybe catching practice and a new coach might help. 2) Lack of a good spinner. Ashwin is no good overseas and Jadeja (a good fielder) is not a 4th bowler or main spinner. Why not try ohja or mishra or rasool for overseas matches.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 17:08 GMT)

All can blame dhoni as captain for his losses away from home, but the fact is india don have perfect "FAST BOWLING ALLROUNDER" in abroad conditions who supports middle order, 4 specialist bowlers are not enough to take 20 wickets if the track goes flat.GIVEN THE SAME TEAM FOR KOLI TO LEAD THIS SIDE, I WONDER THE RESULT WILL SAME AS NOW..

Posted by KumarSubramanyan on (February 18, 2014, 17:07 GMT)

First of all, India need 5 bowlers to take 20 wickets...4 bowlers may do this at home, but when we travel abroad, we definitely need to play 5 bowlers. Btw India's current best spinner (Pragyan Ojha) is yet to play a test outside the sub-continent.

The "fast-bowling all-rounder" seem to have disappeared..OR being ignored by the selectors..Irfan pathan has totally degenerated; Stuart Binny and Rishi Dhawan are ignored...& based on current form in the longer version of the game, even a Vinay Kumar would have been an effective 4th seamer abroad..can't go by the One test experience at perth.

Virat Kohli needs to be get more involved "on-field" as a vice captain.I hardly saw Virat and Dhoni discussing tactics on the field of play

The other problem will be that India plays the WC after a full series in AUS..that will mean a long tour and by the time the WC starts, most of the players will be exhausted.It happened in 1992; I'm sure its going to happen again. Hope BCCI wakes up in time..

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 17:06 GMT)

dhoni has taken captaincy for granted , he should be stripped of his test captaincy for now atleast also change of coach . virat or stephen fleming/ or ray jennings should be given the charge

Posted by ProdigyA on (February 18, 2014, 17:06 GMT)

I see a lot of people saying Dhoni should not be blamed and its the weak bowling attack that needs to be blamed.

My question is who is selecting them? Isnt it Dhoni? He goes in with only 3 fast bowlers and one part time spinner in a must win match. Out of the three bowlers, Zak and Ishant are his favourites and will never be out of the team irrespective of their performance. Why wasnt Mishra (a full time spinner) not given a single chance to play?

When young guys like Pandey are not given a chance and are made to sit on the bench for one full month inspite of repeated failures by his favourties, how can you say we do not have good bowlers?

I would drop Dhoni from the Test team altogether and like Marty said, have him concentrate on 2015 WC.

Im dissapointed with Dravid's statement that Dhoni must be given a chance so that he can "have an opportunity to be able to correct that poor overseas record". Sir, we should never play for records, play the best team with the best capatain.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 17:06 GMT)

Rest Ishant,Zaheer .Bring new fast bowlers..and try at least give them chance..Selectors select new one bt Skipper Dhoni don't give them chance in playing XI,so what is use of them for selecting ?. The main problem of India is lack of producing world class fast bowlers .above 140-150's.?I don't know why isn't there fast bowlers in india or what?Pakistan being smaller country produces world fast bowlers why can't india? I feel ashamed for that..

Posted by TRAM on (February 18, 2014, 16:59 GMT)

>>"He didn't trust his fast bowlers to be able to take wickets." If so, why does he keep selecting IShant in his team? So who is selecting the 16 and the playing 11, Dravid? One thing I am happy is Dravid says Dhoni can captain for one more year. For me, it does not matter how many more years Dravid would give him. At least Dravid has brought the point that Dhoni must go. Thanks Dravid.

Posted by ProdigyA on (February 18, 2014, 16:46 GMT)

Dravid, I know you are really a good guy and never talk ill about anybody, but its time to call a spade, a spade. Dhoni does not even deserve to be in the Test team forget about captaincy.

The biggest issue his selecting his playing XI. Dhoni has ruined the careers of many young cricketers by not giving them any chance and keeps selecting his favourite players again and again.

Its high time to let Dhoni go, make anybody the captain but Dhoni. What will happen at worse, we will lose rite? We are loosing anyway, at least the new guy will get some exposure.

Dhoni keeps banking on the wrong XI and selectors keep banking on the wrong captain. Time for change.

Posted by nach on (February 18, 2014, 16:46 GMT)

Indian never played well on bouncy pitches.Just check how many test matches Indians won abroad and you will know what I mean. Nothing much is going to change. Selectors may include gambhir or harabhajan, but these guys were ineffective when they got white washed 4-0.

Posted by Arun_Mathew on (February 18, 2014, 16:34 GMT)

@ LegSpinBowlr.. dravid a defensive captain,, i suppose u were sleeping when he lead India to two overseas series win, In WestIndies 2006 and in England 2007. Dravid has a better record as captain overseas. He is one captain who took some bold moves, even in IPL, his attacking captaincy was to be seen , leading royals in a fantastic ways.

Posted by dskvsk on (February 18, 2014, 16:32 GMT)

We lost to Australia, England, South Africa and now NZ. Dhoni now should realize the omit of Gambhir and Sehwag.

Posted by stalefresh on (February 18, 2014, 16:32 GMT)

This time I disagree with Dravid. Our next 2 Test tours are Eng and Aus where we were white washed last time around. SA and NZL tours have shown that team India is making no improvement under Dhoni. I complete agree that bowling is not skillfull, but to win toss and bowl, to not take new bowl, to keep defensive frield, to be behind the game, and to show general disinterest in test cricket, and to not be able to deliver with the bat - these things purely come down to Dhoni. Agressive test captains make weak bowling attacks look better, Dhoni does not have that in him. I will not be shocked if Dhoni remains test captain, given how India cricket runs these days, but I will certainly be disappointed. For fans like me, we want some accountability. Time for him to go.

Posted by svenkat02 on (February 18, 2014, 16:29 GMT)

Martin Crowe is right! Split the captaincy across tests and ODI's. Keep Dhoni as captain of the ODI and T20 side (till the WC, after that let Dhoni himself assess; he earns that right for ODI's and T20's). Give Kohli the reins in tests RIGHT NOW. When we visit England and Australia this year, we do not want to be bogged down by defensive captaincy, that will definitely cost us the series in both tours, and might even subject us to utter embarassment. When we face Johnson & co. in Australia, we need to fight aggression with aggression, and Kohli might be the guy for it.

Let Dhoni focus on the WC. If need be, use him for his experience in tests as just a player. But give Kohli the reins now. I wish Dhoni himself takes the lead and steps down from test cricket today to focus on the WC, which will be his watershed moment. Defending a WC for India has never been done before. If Dhoni wants to be the first man to do it, he needs all the focus.

Posted by addsmiles on (February 18, 2014, 16:28 GMT)

Any team having an inconsistent Ishant, an aging Zaheer a newcomer Shami as the bowling leads is bound to struggle. Even in the spin department it is a choice between two batting allrounders (Jadeja, Ashwin). And I do not see any quality replacements in sight. We can blame Dhoni as much as we want, but the fact is that a team needs bowlers who can take 20 wickets in a game and right now India's bowling attack is toothless.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 16:26 GMT)

Look who is talking..Dravid oozes defensiveness...he refused to win even a Test match handed on a platter in England. Dhoni, must go. Make Sehwag or Kohli the Captain.

Posted by Sir_Ivor on (February 18, 2014, 16:23 GMT)

When he became captain from the CB series ODI's in Australia which he won, he has always won because of luck. Never because of his cricketing acumen or vision.The fact that he leaves his bowlers to set their own fields would show that his cool facade is just that. I believe his luck ended with the World Cup 2011 which India won under his captaincy breaking even the jinx of no home team ever winning the ODI World Cup. In 2007, before the inaugural World Cup no one had ever played this format of the game anywhere in India. yet they won. Most crucially,India beat Pakistan in the first game in a bowling shootout and the last game in the final when Misbah dilscooped the ball down a waiting Sreesanth's throat. He even drew against Sri Lanka and South Africa in Tests away from home. I feel sad that the finest Captain India ever had, Rahul Dravid wants Dhoni to get another year at the helm. If Indian cricket has to get out of this run Dhoni must step down forthwith. It is time to blood Kohli.

Posted by Jimmyvida on (February 18, 2014, 16:22 GMT)

Agree with Dravid. Dhoni needs to end with India #5 or #6 in both tests and ODI. He stands a mile away from the batsman behind the stumps and slips more than that. His worshipful fans keep saying how batsmen are luck with the ball dropping in front of slips. After England and Australia if Dhoni has any remorse he would give up the captaincy. I cannot see the powers that be removing him.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 16:22 GMT)

I think this is first time ever I don't agree with Dravid's opinion. How much more do we want to wait to see the agony of indian cricket ?

Posted by Scrop on (February 18, 2014, 16:21 GMT)

Yeah. Quite right. Dhoni has to gamble if India has to win.

He has to try atleast 2-3 test matches with 5 bowlers theory instead of sticking with 4 bowlers in test. If Jadeja is in the XI, lets go with an additional seam bowler. Jadeja can be groomed as good No. 6 or No. 7. Time to give him some responsibility as a main batsman.

I would drop Vijay from the XI promote Rahane/Pujara to open include a bowler for the next series.

Posted by Retour on (February 18, 2014, 16:19 GMT)

It is no secret that Ind's bowling is relatively weaker than some of the other test sides, therefore the captain has more reasons to create an environment that helps the bowlers to succeed. By allowing things to drift, esp. at crucial moments, Ind captain is sending a wrong message to his bowlers. With the opposition 3 or 4 wkts down, if you ask your bowlers to keep attacking, eventually they will produce the ball that will create a break through, esp. in overseas conditions. If you sit back and hope of things to happen, bowlers will try to contain and we will see fewer and fewer wks taking balls being bowled .... Additionally, the team selection needs to improve. Overall, Dhoni's captaincy has been poor in tests played overseas. In Ind, he gets away with poor decisions because the team delivers. Playing overseas, his strategy have to be clear and spot on.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 16:17 GMT)

yeah why do they conduct an experiment. Ask greame smith, michael clarke or Alastair cook to captain the indian bowling attack and see what they come up with atleast dhoni saves india from embarrassing defeats by taking the defensive approach. Every team has a bowler that provides a crucial breakthrough when needed. But look at us we have ishant sharma who averages 37 with the bowl, a 35 yr old zaheer khan who just doesn't want to retire. Just sack all of them. Just get pandey bhuvi aaron and yadav playing the test matches. We don't need useless experience of ishant sharma. I am not sure if he has even gained anyafter 50 test caps. With young bowlers, we won ct trophy with bhuvi prividing india the breakthrough they needed consistently with the new ball. Which was fantastivlc.But then all of a sudden there was sudden decline in his bowling he average went from 21 to 35 and economy from 3.9 to 4.7. i can't believe how that happened just within a year.

Posted by Yevghenny on (February 18, 2014, 16:17 GMT)

Why can India produce top quality batsmen but no bowlers?

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 16:12 GMT)

yes he is more defensive in overseas but mccullum battedt really well.

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 16:11 GMT)

yes dhoni captancy is not good in overseas and he is more defensive

Posted by armanMOON on (February 18, 2014, 16:09 GMT)

I think its d perfct tym 2 call gambhir back in d team,team really need his expirience...more over he shud b handed over d captaincy now,is d perfct guy 2 lead d test team....tho dhoni is a prfct persn for d odi's but he is most poor even as a batsman in tests...he doesnt deserve a place in test team....we shud understand dat....y selectors r respecting dhoni more den d team....

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 16:09 GMT)

yes dhoni captancy is not good in overseas

Posted by steve48 on (February 18, 2014, 16:07 GMT)

Truthful but classy comments from classy commentators. In tests abroad especially it is obvious that Dhoni struggles to truly believe in his bowlers, and looks to frustrate batsmen instead. Hard to know how much player input he is receiving, given his status and following the loss of so many senior players. Shame for India is that Zaheer Khan's fitness and injury issues have left him unable to play a full part as a bowling leader, and perhaps instill some confidence in both them and Dhoni!

Posted by LegSpinBowlr on (February 18, 2014, 16:06 GMT)

Dravid was also a defensive captain and hes complaining dhoni of being defensive

Posted by   on (February 18, 2014, 16:05 GMT)

Disagree... I dont think so that the MS Dhoni is all that wrong... No matter you handover to any one the captaincy, the basis flaw is lack of their wicket taking bowlers..Take Pakistan as an example. Misbah is not that great captain but has become acceptable just because of potent bowlers...

So i think MS Dhoni should be kept as captain till 2015 atleast

Posted by RK.Chandru on (February 18, 2014, 16:01 GMT)

It's time to remove Dhoni from captaincy and make Kohli or Ghambir as captain of test team. His looking towards a certain bunch of players is hurting the team like hell. While everyone was making a big hue and cry when Srikkanth was the chief selector, why are they keeping mum now? The present committee is doing a even worse job. seems like, Dhoni has veto power and it's he who decides the composition of the team. Why can't the selectors instead give him a team to lead instead of allowing him to choose the team he leads? We have given him enough freedom and suffered and it's time to check that and let selectors call the shots from now on. It's a shame we lost this way to a team that's ranked at the bottom. Let the genius, MSD accept it instead of giving lame excuses. He failed as a captain as well.

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