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MS Dhoni has a lot more to offer than just his batting numbers: Murali Kartik

Dhoni will not feature in the T20I series against the Windies and Australia.

Murali Kartik
Murali Kartik. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Former India spinner Murali Kartik believes MS Dhoni, who was recently dropped from India’s T20I side, has a lot more to him than just his batting numbers. Of late, Dhoni’s form has come under the scanner and the veteran stumper has been criticized for his batting performances. Many believe it was because of his poor run with the bat and his diminishing abilities to finish off innings which led selectors to axe him from the side.  However, the MSK Prasad-led selection committee has mentioned that he has only been rested.

Dhoni will not be featuring in the next two T20I series against the Windies and Australia, which are slotted for November. However, India will certainly resort to his years of experience behind the stumps for next year’s ICC Cricket World Cup in England. Arguably the best finisher the game has ever seen, MSD, even at 37, remains a cricketer with a lot to offer for Team India. But his abilities with the bat seem to have clearly diminished – his highest score in the last 10 innings has been 36 which came against Bangladesh in the Asia Cup final.

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Many have felt that the selectors have taken this brave decision as they now want to look beyond the veteran wicketkeeper-batsman. But simultaneously, experts have to say that despite his lack of form, Dhoni remains a priceless asset for the national side. Amongst them, Murali Kartik isn’t entirely pleased with the selector’s decision to drop him as he believes MSD cannot only be judged on the basis of his recent batting numbers.

The team looks up to Dhoni: Murali Kartik

“It’s not just about the numbers. It’s what he adds to the team, adds from behind the stumps as well. The team is looking up to him and as one of the senior statesman, he has got a very calm head. He has a lot more than just the batting numbers. But having taken that call, it’s a bold one from the selectors,” he was quoted as saying to International Business (IB) Times.

India are looking to try out their second wicketkeeper in the lead up to the World T20 in 2020. Rishabh Pant has already been given the gloves for the longest format, and is likely to take his position behind the stumps for the upcoming T20I series as well. Kartik feels that with only around 10 ODIs left for India before the World Cup gets underway, benching Dhoni for 6 international games could work against the veteran and eventually the team.

There is no confirmation as yet about whether Dhoni will instead feature for Jharkhand in the 2018-19 Ranji Trophy which begins tomorrow on November 1. This could give him more match practice ahead of the ODI series against Australia, which is scheduled for a January 12 start.

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