Adam Gilchrist backs MS Dhoni
Adam Gilchrist was in Bangalore on October 31 for the Bradman Foundation scholarship award function, and it was obvious that he was as much a fan of the Indian captain as Dhoni is of the Aussie.
“I have not seen enough consecutive days or hours of India’s Test cricket recently to be able to form an opinion on whether MS (Dhoni) is captaining well or appropriately,” he said. “But I have been extremely impressed with him from the moment he came on to the scene. His calmness is quite extraordinary. It is such an amazing position to hold – captaining the Indian cricket team.
“I think he has got great qualities. He has led India to World Cup success in T20s, and in 50-over cricket. He also took India to the No. 1 spot in Test cricket at one stage. Although results might not have gone his or his team’s way in recent times, he is still a strong leader – a man who commands respect. I think he is a quality person and a cricketer.
“He will know when it is time for him to relinquish any further duties,” said Gilchrist when asked about Dhoni’s travails as captain, especially overseas. “Remember, he has a lot of duties, there is a lot on his plate, and he has carried it very well if you look at the bigger picture.”
Former Australia captain Chappell had said earlier this month that he did not find Dhoni good enough to be India’s Test captain anymore and said it was time for him to hand over the reins of the team to Kohli. When asked who is his favourite to win next year’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, Gilchrist said, “I think Australia will be one of the favourites. But three or four teams could win the World Cup.”
India are going to Australia in December for four Tests and an ODI tri-series and Gilchrist put his money on the hosts largely because of their familiarly with the conditions. “All teams are maintaining their home advantage at the moment. You can see Australia, India and England – they have not done well abroad,” he said.
Will the absence of players like Sunil Narine, if he is not cleared of a suspect bowling action, affect competitiveness in the World Cup, Gilchrist said the game is bigger than the individuals. “There was a time when Sir Donald Bradman left the scene. Even we have seen Sachin Tendulkar leave the game, but the game goes on.”