Dhoni: Captain-cool or captain-safe?

Updated: 12 July 2011 09:45 IST

The decision to play safe and ensure a draw in the final Test against the West Indies was not the first instance of Dhoni adopting a no-risk policy. A closer look at his captaincy in the past shows that the Indian skipper is not just captain-cool but also captain-safe.

New Delhi:

The decision to play safe and ensure a draw in the final Test against the West Indies was not the first instance of Dhoni adopting a no-risk policy. A closer look at his captaincy in the past shows that the Indian skipper is not just captain-cool but also captain-safe.

The previous Test at Barbados too saw Indian batsmen batting at a snail's pace, eventually having the match drawn instead of pushing for a win. That India had already won the opening Test and that batting was not conducive was seen by few who advocated the strategy as reason good enough to justify the lack of intent to go for the kill.

In tours before the West Indies as well, India has often let go off opportunities to inflict further blows after seizing the early advantage. In the Wellington Test against New Zealand in 2009, Dhoni refused to declare despite a mammoth lead of 600 runs. This second Test ended in a draw much to the frustration of Indian fans and lovers of Test cricket.

While India is often lauded for employing shrewd tactics, there are instances where the aggressive demeanour of the young team is undermined. Former cricketer Arun Lal agrees that India's strategy to play safe on occasions does not justify it's status as the Number 1 Test team. "However well the Windies are bowling, there were no demons in the wicket. You need 4 runs an over, at least try. You can't get the jitterbugs when you lose 1 wicket," he told NDTV.

Topics : Cricket India Bangladesh Darren Sammy India in West Indies, 2011 MS Dhoni Ravi Rampaul Gary Kirsten
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