Sachin Tendulkar Weighs In On MS Dhoni's Exclusion From India T20I Team
MS Dhoni was left out of the Indian T20I squads for the series against the Windies and Australia.
MS Dhoni's exclusion from India's Twenty20 International (T20I) team for the series against the Windies and Australia has been grabbing eyeballs all over the world. From former players, fans, cricket pundits and even Indian captain Virat Kohli have had their say on the matter and on Friday, India batting great Sachin Tendulkar weighed in on the issue. Tendulkar said that he didn't know the "mindset of the selectors" for leaving out Dhoni and felt that all decisions taken should be "in the best interest of the nation".
"I don't know what's the mindset of the selectors is and I haven't looked to influence anyone by giving opinions as what happens in dressing room and between captain, coach and selectors should stay within them," Tendulkar told ANI. "Whatever they are planning, whatever decisions are taken should be in the best interest of the nation."
Tendulkar praised Dhoni for the contribution to Indian cricket and said that the former India captain exactly knows "what is going on" and "what needs to be done".
"I have never made judgements. Even earlier and I don't want to pass a judgement where the selectors will start thinking otherwise, I don't want to influence that. See, Dhoni has always been a massive contributor in all forms of cricket. And he has taken the responsibility for a number of years. So whatever he decides, I always feel that a player having played for such a long time knows what he needs to work on and what he needs to do," the batting legend was quoted as saying by IANS.
"So, I myself went out there, I knew exactly what I needed to work on. And you sit in the dressing room and you discuss with your colleagues. You discuss various things with your coach and you are pretty much clear what you wanted to do. And I would like to believe that MS, having played for so many years, knows exactly what is going on and knows exactly what needs to be done."
According to chief selector MSK Prasad, Dhoni's T20I career is not over and the decision to leave him out was made to shore up back-up options behind the stumps.
"Dhoni is not going to play the 6 T20Is because we're looking at the second keeper slot. It is not the end of Dhoni in T20Is," said chief selector MSK Prasad.
India have played a total of 104 T20I matches since the format's debut in 2006 and Dhoni has been part of 93 of those matches. Dhoni, who led India to the T20 World Cup title in 2007, has scored 1,487 T20I runs at an average of 37.17 and a strike-rate of 127.90.
Dhoni has hit two half-centuries and also has 54 catches and 33 stumpings to his name in T20 international cricket.