Out-of-form MS Dhoni wants to make amends on New Zealand tour
Where the likes of Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane impressed in Team India's last overseas assignment, Mahendra Singh Dhoni failed to contribute well with the bat while coming in down the order.
Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni addressed the need for an improvement in his performance and exuded confidence in his young side while talking to the media ahead of the team's departure to New Zealand for a five-ODI and Two-Test series starting on January 19.
"I am confident about this team's ability. The batsmen played really well in South Africa," Dhoni said in Mumbai. (MS Dhoni targets New Zealand tour for 2015 World Cup preperations)
In the recently-concluded South Africa series where the likes of Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane were among the runs, Dhoni contributed only 87 runs in the 4 innings batting at number seven. Dhoni acknowledged that, saying, "I would like to improve my performance."
"I would like to do well in overseas conditions. But sometimes the field is spread and have to play shots. But want the 8,9,10 to start contributing more," he added.
Despite losing the Test series in South Africa 1-0, Dhoni is looking to take positives from that tour ahead of a series in seemingly similar conditions.
"We have a slightly bigger challenge. We should be proud of what we have and it's important for us to tune up a bit," he said.
Talking about the challenges that his bowling unit will face, Dhoni said, " There will be more competition in bowling department. Now with everyone fit, there will be a lot of competition. When wickets are on drier side and there is not not enough swing movement, we have to improve as fast bowlers. Because we don't have hit the deck bowlers."
"We have different types of fast bowlers. Varun [Aaron] has comeback well. But each bowler has to know their strengths. So we will have to see," he added.
He also spoke of the impact that his spinners could have in conditions that will not be conducive for them and said, " We don't have five specialist bowlers. So can't have spinner who gives away too many. Jadeja's performance in South Africa was good. Spinner's role on first day is to not give too much turn. When they play more outside India, they will learn the need to be patient. Till we don't get a seaming all-rounder, that's what they will have to get used to."
Dhoni also shared his thoughts on Stuart Binny, who was given his maiden call-up to the ODI squad. He said, " Stuart binny is interesting. He has some swing. Most int venues wickets are flat we will have to see if we can feature as 3rd seamer. It depends how he does in nets."