Login To Trade  |  About IIFL
  • NIFTY  6976.35  -239.35 -3.32%
  • SENSEX 22951.83  -807.07 -3.4%
  1. Research
  2. Sector

  3. Media & Entertainment

Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Captain, Indian Cricket Team

India Infoline News Service | Mumbai | September 07, 2010 16:29 IST

Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni in an exclusive interview to NDTV talks about performance of youngsters, prospects for the world cup, the form of the bowlers, the fix the team is in because it lacks a bowling all-rounders and the recent match-fixing scandal that has hit Pakistan cricket.

Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Captain, Indian Cricket Team, has led team India to number one position in ICC rankings in test cricket for the first time. Under his captaincy, India won the 2007 ICC World Twenty20, CB Series of 2007–08 , and the Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2008. He also captained Chennai Super Kings to victory in the IPL 2010. He is now captain of India in all three forms of the game and also led the team to their first ever bilateral ODI series wins in Sri Lanka and New Zealand.

Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni in an exclusive interview to NDTV talks about performance of youngsters, prospects for the world cup, the form of the bowlers, the fix the team is in because it lacks a bowling all-rounders and the recent match-fixing scandal that has hit Pakistan cricket.

So living out of a suitcase...but that’s what you've been doing now for a long time, right?
Yes we are off to South Africa, Champion's League is there... again a big tournament...you know all the Champions from different places will be accumulating at one place and playing against each other...so I am just hoping… you know… the tournament will be interesting..

And you think Chennai Superkings have a good chance...
I think every side has a good chance... especially in this format - 20-20 and it's just about that particular day and know which one of the players has his brilliant day.. it can be a bowler... it can be a batsman... I feel it's very day oriented ... you know... that three...three and a half hour matter and if you had act your best on that particular day then you can beat any side.. Maybe even the strongest side in the world...

World Cup...
Well of course... I think it's a big tournament for us... all the world cups... if you see... they are big wherever they are held...but if you see the world cup happening in India...you know its a real big thing...the hype that will be created. I think there will be pressure on the players. Not only on the field but also off the field...with the kind of expectation that the Indian public has got with the team...we are expected to do well... it will be important for the success of the team you know... how individuals... they manage this pressure, how well they deal with this kind of a pressure but I think most of the players they have played lots of games.. So that really helps in a way... but still that will be very interesting to see...of course we have 12 -13 ODIs before we go into the World Cup... there may be a platform where you see you know what changes... or if you have any change in strategies or plans...you can test it...other wise when you get closer... before four five games you don't really like to experiment too much...but i think the next for five games will be important...

Inconsistency in the team?
Yes... if you talk about the last series... the Tri series...I am not too much worried about that... because I feel that the conditions were demanding... but we can question that as international players we should perform in every venue or condition that you are thrown at so we could have done a bit better. The good sign...I always look at the positive. The good sign.. I think Virender Sehwag batted really well... the bowlers... they did a splendid job throughout the tournament...so that is a positive that we have taken... of course you know there are areas where we need to work... we need to be very consistent with the batting dept... and we need to improve as a fielding unit.. .. So these are the plus and negatives or you can say areas where we need to improve. Before doing the World Cup...

The younger generation..?
I think it's a constant learning process. But if you see the batting line up we have four series or in the last 8 months... there has been maybe one place for grab... when everyone is fit you know... Sachin opening… Gautam Gambhir at three and Yuvraj Singh at four you know and me batting at five... Raina and all... I think that there has been just one space that’s available for grabs... what's happening is that we are rotating the players as we want to see who is best suitable option for that particular spot...which in turn puts more pressure on the individual coming in... because he's not a permanent player who always comes on the top eleven which means they put more pressure on them and they get more desperate to perform... which in turn pulls you into performing your best..

Well of course it is as I said you know... I named most of the individuals... of course... what happens is as fresh talent... as youngsters if you have played twenty thirty games... you come in and you are not certain... you are not certain of a place in the side. What you try and do is come up with a brilliant performance... which means you are pushing yourself to the limit... there is already enough pressure already on you... you take more pressure to perform on that particular game.. Because you think it's just three or four games...where you are getting a chance... somebody else will come... he would also get a chance...which bogs you down in a way... i feel when it comes to talent we have got the talented players.. It’s all about managing the pressure...and not taking any extra amount of pressure... that you can really remove from yourself and of course we had the greats in the game and at the time we had no space it the top five or six... when it comes to the batting dept... but lately in the last three

Giving young players a chance?
Well of course... what I believe in is giving a certain number of games at a stretch which means he doesn't have the pressure of performing on that particular game otherwise he'll be thrown out... you know what happens.. He plays three or four games at least... he knows ok the next three or four games are mine... so I have a span of period where I can perform and say that I belong to this level. It's not only about one particular player, I try to do it to all the players, he maybe a batsman or he maybe a bowler.. but at times what we have seen that the importance of a game often pushes us to go for the best eleven that's particularly suited for that game...

Lack of an all rounder in the team?
Definitely because what I feel is that bowling all-rounder gives you that stability of almost playing with five bowlers and six batsmen at the same time so along with the wicket keeper I think it's a very crucial spot and always the team that has got a very good all rounder... looks as the most stable side.. when Irfan Pathan was a part of our side... he was doing really well... our side looked really different because... he can bowl at any time…he can open the bowling, he can bowl in the middle overs and also equally he's a good batsman... we need someone.. we tried it with Jadeja also. There have been a few ups and downs but he has done well with the ball not so well with the bat and then you have individuals like Yusuf Pathan, they can also feature in here because he can bowl and bat... because to have that really stable batting lineup and the team to look stable...

Performance has dropped off a lot now?
I think it has to... it has to do with the change in plans also.... so because the power play came in... and then the amount of cricket we play especially in India... it's a ... very tiring on the bowlers... you know you are bowling on the wicket where there is no bounce no pace and you are expected to bowl with the new ball... and the ball comes nicely on to the bat... then the first power play and then the second power play... and the dead over... so I feel he pressure is too much on them which pushes them to perform and pushes them right to the limit... which at times gives them injuries... and you keep playing and the injuries get worse and worse... I feel it has more to do with the conditions... and the kind of cricket we play... so we are just hoping that before the World cup we don't have any such kind of injuries... we have struggled when it came to the fast bowling dept... and we saw people we had got talent.. but what we felt was that they need a bit of experience... and which can only happen once they play a few games but we don't really have the luxury of having so many games before the World cup right now so we are now hoping that whatever we have got, we are quite happy with the bowlers that we have.. the lot of bowlers that we have got... we are just saying that... nobody gets injured before the World cup...

Making money from the game... is that a fair comment?
You may earn whatever money you earn as a cricketer... but you want to play for your country... at the end of the day if you want to do something special there are plenty of people who earn Rs500mn or Rs1bn as business men...or big professionals or who are really doing well in business... but you know what gives pleasure to your mom and dad...is the fame... people say his dad's name is this... he is doing really well in this field... so that can only be achieved when once as a cricketer you play for this country... and you play for a sustainable period of time...you know it's not like coming in and out of the slide... money you know... if you play cricket for Indian.. Money is bound to come… with IPL and match money of the Ranji trophy... the first class... I think money is there... there's no good reason why you should not work hard... because at the end of the day you want to play for your country.

When someone's not performing or working hard?
Well, of course we need to because... as senior players in the side... if you can see something coming... for a youngster's career you know which may be a bad thing for him... you go up to him and educate him as to what he is doing and what he should be doing... at the end of the day he is the one who should be making the call because when he's part of a series you can push him to do well but what you want is in between the series and back home where he has the luxury of doing whatever he wants, that's the time when you want him to work hard...not when he's on the field or when he's with you... it's a point when it says that don’t spoon-feed...you know if somebody's in trouble you always need to help him or her out.. the next time he is in trouble he will look at you... he won't even try to make any adjustment as to what can be done... he'll just look at you for a solution... so we don't really believe in that... we don't spoon-feed any of the cricketers... what we tell them is... we make them aware of the situation... what's happening...and what can be done... we can give them a few options and solutions... and push them to select the best option....

Matchfixing scandal?
Well it's sad... the investigations are going on and ... a... something like match fixing or spot fixing... it brings disrepute to the game... it doesn't only restrict the people who are doing it…. and the side which they belong to... people start associating it with the whole fraternity.... which means all the cricketers whichever team you are playing for it doesn't really matter... and at times you know what happens... if there is a game which is a very low scoring game... people often say it's really a fixed game... you of course work so hard for it... everyday you go to the gym or... onto the field, traveling and the amount of pressure you go through and you achieve something which is remarkable.. and people come up with those kind of words... it can be really disheartening... so... what we try to do is to keep those four five words away from cricket as possible...

I would agree with that... definitely because as I said... it doesn't restrict the opinion to yourself... it goes around everywhere... so definitely harsh decisions... need to be taken...

Matches fixing in the Indian team?
I don't really think so... and the kind of effort that we put in the field... they can't really even think about it... so I don't see anything like that...

Yeah at the end of the day you know... what's money all about... there's a bracket of money and after that you still eat the same food and you go in the same car. So I think... you know most of the cricketers they come from middle class background... so they are aware of the situation... and I think most of them... they want to play for their country.. Get the fame out of it... and most of them are clever enough to know that... money is bound to come when you play cricket for India and I believe the struggle that they go through the initial starting phase of their career... I think that teaches them really well... that you know... don't think about the money... because we have already gone through the harsh part of life... when you have traveled in the sleeper class... and at times in a bus with no reservations... and nothing... most of the cricketers have gone through that and I don't think anything like that will happen in the Indian cricket team.

So no one's come to you and complained?
No... No... No... Never... never till now. I think it's representing the country that's more important...

Is the World Cup safe?
Definitely yes. We are a good side... a very talented side.. But as I always say... I don't predict much about cricket... if you play to your potential and you do all the things right... on the field and off the field... during that period you have a very good chance to do well... you will really win the World Cup...

Source: NDTV

Get the most detailed result analysis on the web - Real Fast!

Actionable & Award-Winning Research on 500 Listed Indian Companies.

Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Captain, Indian Cricket Team
Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Captain, Indian Cricket Team
Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni in an exclusive interview to NDTV talks about performance of youngsters, prospects for the world cup, the form of the bowlers, the fix the team is in because it lacks a bowling all-rounders and the recent match-fixing scandal that has hit Pakistan cricket.
September 07, 2010 16:29 IST
Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Captain, Indian Cricket Team, NDTV
Media & Entertainment
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
08 09 10 11 12 13 14
Download IIFL Markets App