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Sunil Gavaskar questions MS Dhoni’s long leave from Indian Cricket Team

  • Gavaskar has asked if it is okay for any player to keep himself away from national duties for so long.
Umaima Saeed
Modified 12 Jan 2020, 11:42 IST
Sunil Gavaskar and MS Dhoni
Sunil Gavaskar and MS Dhoni

Former India captain MS Dhoni has not played for India since the team’s semi-final exit from the 2019 ICC World Cup. His decision to take a sabbatical has come under the scanner, with a few cricketers questioning if Dhoni should enjoy the privilege of taking such a long break.

Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar, who was speaking at the Lal Bahadur Shastri Memorial lecture, has asked if it is okay for any player to keep himself away from national duties for so long.

“I can’t tell you anything about fitness. But I think the question that needs to be asked is of MSD himself,” Gavaskar told reporters.

“He has not made himself available to play for India since July 10. That is the important point. Does anyone keep himself away from playing for India for that long? That is the question and therein lies the answer,” he said.

In absence of Dhoni, young keeper-batsman Rishabh Pant is being given opportunities, but he has failed to do anything substantial for the team except on rare occasions. Pant’s consistent failures prompted the team management to drop him in favour of Sanju Samson in the third T20I versus Sri Lanka, but the Kerala keeper-batsman also disappointed, having got out on only his second ball.

Head coach Ravi Shastri has hinted that if Dhoni performs well in the upcoming edition of the Indian Premier League, he will be selected in India’s World T20 squad. But there are too many ifs and buts for now and it is up to the three-time ICC trophy-winning skipper to give clarity on his plans. 

Published 12 Jan 2020, 11:42 IST
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