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Shastri mounts staunch Dhoni defence

1.52K   //    26 Dec 2017, 19:46 IST
India wicketkeeper-batsman MS Dhoni and head coach MS Dhoni

Ravi Shastri has slammed MS Dhoni's critics by stating the India selectors are "not stupid" and rate the wicketkeeper-batsman as one of the best in the world.

Dhoni's place in the India limited-overs teams has been called into question in certain quarters, but selector MSK Prasad this week said there is no keeper on the planet to rival the 36-year-old.

India head coach Shastri also staunchly defended the former skipper, who retired from Test cricket three years ago but kept his place in the one-day international and Twenty20 teams.

Shastri told India Today: "We are not stupid. I have been watching this sport for the last 30-40 years. Virat [Kohli, India captain] has been a part of this team for a decade now. We know, at this age, he can beat players aged 26. People who talk, forget that they played the game.

"If they look at themselves in the mirror and ask the question, 'what were they doing at the age of 36?'. Would they have run two runs faster? By the time they finish two, this guy will run three. Then he has won only two World Cups and averages only 51.

"Today you don't have a wicketkeeper to replace him in the one-day team.

"He is still one of the best around, not only in the Indian team, but in the world. Some of the things you see with him are not sold in the market. You will not get it anywhere else.

"The fact that he does not play Test cricket, means he should be playing as much cricket as possible until the World Cup in 2019."

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