Dhoni unlikely to go with three spinners

Modified 14 Nov 2012

Ahmedabad - India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni has hinted that he is unlikely to play three spinners in the four-Test series opener against England starting at the Motera here on Thursday.

“Maybe if we get a wicket like the one at Kanpur against South Africa (played in 2008), it makes sense to go with a spin heavy attack. It is always advisable to have a bowling attack which has people available for different scenarios,” said Dhoni at the pre-match press conference here.

This would mean that off-spinner Harbhajan Singh, who has been recalled to the side in than a year, is most likely to sit out for Ravichandran Ashwin and Pragyan Ojha.

“Ashwin and Ojha understand each other really well, something that’s very important. Ojha is someone who can keep it tight at one end and Ashwin will always be more aggressive, someone who has got plenty of variations and loves to use those,” said Dhoni.

On Harbhajan’s role in the series, Dhoni said: “Bhajji features in the world’s top five spinners. Ojha has played with him in some matches. Bhajji can share things with Ashwin because Ashwin is slightly different to him. I feel he has got a big amount of contribution to make in the coming series,” added the wicket-keeper batsman.

Dhoni refused to comment whether this will be a revenge series after the 0-4 thrashing India had received in England last year.

“I know for a fact that when we go to the field, there will be a red ball, two teams that will play. You can name it whatever you want,” said the 31-year-old.

Dhoni also praised comeback man Yuvraj Singh and said his place is vital in the team.

“The best thing for us is Yuvraj bats at number five or six and his left-arm spin. It’s a very important role for us as we don’t have a genuine all-rounder and play with four bowlers. His contribution will be very important.”

Published 14 Nov 2012
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