Has MS Dhoni rested from T20s or has he stepped down on his own? Those are the questions swirling around since his exclusion from the team, but it’s learnt that the selectors decided to drop him and test others in preparation for the T20 world cup in 2020.
The Indian Express learns that the selectors conveyed the decision to Dhoni through the team management that time has come to look beyond him.
The sources say selectors didn’t feel that Dhoni would be playing in the T20 world cup to be held in Australia and decided that it makes no sense to play him in T20 games anymore. However, as far as Dhoni’s future in one-day internationals is concerned, the Indian cricket board and selectors have left it to Dhoni himself.
“The selectors before selection meeting had informed Dhoni through the team management that time has come to move on and give a chance to a younger player in the shortest format. Everyone knows that Dhoni might not carry on till 2020 T20 World Cup. Selectors felt the Indian board should start looking for Dhoni’s replacement from now on,” a BCCI source told this newspaper.
Future in ODIs?
It remains to be seen what Dhoni decides on his ODI future. Many in the board believe that Dhoni’s service is required for the next year’s 50-over World Cup despite him struggling for runs. It’s believed that Dhoni, the wicket-keeper and his expertise as former captain, can help Virat Kohli during pressure situations.
On Friday, Indian board chairman selection committee chief MSK Prasad gave a clear indication of the Indian team looking for second wicket-keeper who could be in the fray for a spot in T20s. When Prasad was asked the reason for Dhoni’s exclusion, he had said,
“He is not going to play the six T20s because we are looking at second wicketkeeper. It will be between Pant and DK (Dinesh Karthik) and they will get a chance.”
A source told The Indian Express that Dhoni playing T20 for India is highly unlikely now but he will continue to be part of Indian ODI team. Which means Dhoni will travel to Australia for one-day series without any competitive games behind him.
The Ranji Trophy, is set to begin from November 1 but there are no shorter format games in the near future.
The Indian team is scheduled to play three T20s in New Zealand followed by two T20’s at home against Australia.