Indian selectors back Mahendra Singh Dhoni to continue playing till 2019 World Cup
Indian skipper of the shorter formats of the game, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, was in news lately after the reports of him playing till the 2019 World Cup made the rounds. The skipper made a bold statement last month that he was wishing to play till the next World Cup which was backed by many of the cricketing fraternities across India.
According to the reports from Times of India, the national selection committee has expressed its delight in Dhoni's decision of continuing till the 2019 World Cup. The reports also suggested that the selectors were against the decision to change the current hierarchy of the ODI team and would be quite happy if Dhoni continues to play for India till the 2019 World Cup.
The Times of India quoted one of the sources to be saying, "It would make the job of the selectors easy if Dhoni continues to play the way he is playing today. His fitness level is as good as a newcomer's in the team. "
The source also mentioned that the selectors felt that Dhoni's replacement for the shortest format of the game is yet to be found. "He seems to be getting better with age and none of the selectors have discussed leaving out Dhoni in the future. He is an essential member of the ODI team and there is no one in sight who can replace him," the source in the selection committee told Times of India on Tuesday.
The source went on to add, "If Dhoni is willing to play for another three years, it would be good for the team. His motivation level is still good and the day he feels he is not able to make a difference, he will certainly not continue to play cricket at the highest level."
The Times of India quoted the source to be saying, "None can come close to Dhoni's astute captaincy when it comes to the shorter versions of the game." He said that selection committee wasn't committed to making any decision regarding his career as the wicketkeeper-batsman was still looking fit and raring to go.
He also mentioned about Dhoni's performances in the recently concluded ODI series and stated that a lot of cricket is still left in him. Dhoni retired from the traditional format of the game mid-way through India's tour of Australia in December 2014.