Suresh Raina feels MS Dhoni should bat at number four in ODIs
He also added that Kohli's trust in the veteran is helping him.
Updated - Jan 23, 2019 5:22 pm
In the build-up to the India v Australia ODI series which the visitors won, former captain and current wicketkeeper batsman MS Dhoni’s place in the playing XI was questioned. Dhoni, who had been out of form for a long while, ended the series with three consecutive half-centuries and won the Man of the Series award. He was very effective at the no. 4 batting position in the decider which has once again opened up the debate.
For long, India’s no. 4 muddle seems to have no end, but now many opine that Dhoni should be permanently promoted up the batting order. With the World Cup only four months away, India are still unsure of who will take up the much-debated slot.
Captain Virat Kohli, in a recent press conference, however, said that he would like to play Dhoni at no. 5 in the World Cup. But many others, including out of favour batsman Suresh Raina, is in favour of the veteran batting at four.
Dhoni can bat well down the order too
“Last couple of games, he has been batting well. He can bat well with the tailenders also. If he can bat at four, he can also finish games with the five, six and seven. A lot of players can play around him,” Raina told Sportstar on Tuesday. Raina also said that Virat’s trust in Dhoni has helped the former captain revive his confidence.
“He has been playing with a positive frame of mind. He is hitting the ball really well, and most importantly, he is getting a lot of backup and support from Virat (Kohli). If you have the support of the captain, then you just go out there and express yourself. The No 4 slot suits him,” he added.
India are currently playing a 5-match ODI series in New Zealand and unlike the tour of Australia, which didn’t have David Warner and Steve Smith in the series, the Kiwis could be a tough nut to crack.