Dhoni happy with team’s performance against NZ

Bangalore: Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni Monday ticked all the positive boxes while asserting that he was quite happy with the overall performances of the team that is unlikely to see any kind of “reshuffling” for the forthcoming home Test series against England and Australia.

Speaking to media after leading India to a 2-0 series sweep against New Zealand here Monday, Dhoni said he was not unduly worried about the poor form of some of his batsmen, notably opener Gautam Gambhir and Sachin Tendulkar, while making a case for a longer run to the younger players rather than judging them on the basis of a couple of innings.

“No reshuffling. I think, it is just a matter of time before he gets going. I thought he batted quite well in the second innings,” said Dhoni with reference to Gambhir who had scores of 22, 2 and 34 in three innings in the two Tests against the Kiwis.

With regard to Tendulkar, the captain said: “Everytime we talk about Tendulkar’s form, he comes up with a big innings and I am waiting.”

Dhoni was dismissive of criticism of Suresh Raina’s injudicious shot that cost him his wicket in the second innings here and emphasized that younger players needed to be given a long run.

“Like I said, there are two ways of dealing with pressure. Either you go for your shots, like Raina did, or soak in the pressure, like Virat (Kohli) who batted brilliantly. It depends on the individuals, but I feel we need to back the youngsters, for that’s the way to groom them,” said Dhoni.

The Indian captain again made a strong case for playing home Tests on pitches that assist spin, but in the same breath, Dhoni praised spinners Ravichandran Ashwin and Pragyan Ojha for their effort on tracks that did not assist them, but favoured the batsmen.

“I would like to see us batting on turning tracks, but our spinners were brilliant (in the just-concluded series) on pitches that didn’t help them, but I feel that the fast bowlers need to chip in.

“Ashwin and Ojha complemented each other and hunted well on pitches that were good to bat on. Ashwin has been bowling brilliantly and is learning variation while Ojha bowled well in the first innings here,” said Dhoni.