When will MS Dhoni retire has supposedly become a national conundrum, more discussed than Indian team’s problem of who should bat at no. 4. Dhoni has not played for India since the team’s exit in the semi-finals of the ICC World Cup 2019 when they were beaten by New Zealand. Since then he has been on sabbatical with no clearance on his future.
The 38-year-old is a proven great of Indian cricket with 90 Tests, 350 ODIs and 98 T20Is under his belt and has 17266 runs in international cricket with 16 centuries. However, his biggest contribution has been as the captain of the team, making them two-time World Champions in 2007 and 2011, along with an ICC Champions Trophy win in 2013 and Asia Cup win in 2010 and 2016. Dhoni has a legion of fans all across the country thanks to his IPL exploits, who just cannot see him call time on his career, but a former teammate of him thinks the time has come to take some tough decisions.
‘It’s time for some of the youngsters to get groomed’
Gautam Gambhir has been vocal in putting forth his views on everything. He has spoken about a variety of issues around the Indian cricket team while also commenting on MS Dhoni’s retirement. He has been cleared in his view that selectors must talk to Dhoni and discuss his future in the Indian team soon. Though he said that the decision of retiring is sole of Dhoni’s, he doesn’t see him playing the 2023 World Cup.
“I feel that retirement is a very individual decision. Till the time you want to play you are allowed to play, but you do have to look at the future as well. I do not see Dhoni playing the next World Cup. So, whoever is the captain (then), Virat or anyone else, should have the courage to say so, that this player is not fitting into the scheme of things. It’s time for some of the youngsters to get groomed in the next four-five years because ultimately it is not about Dhoni, it is about the country,” Gambhir was quoted as saying by Indian Express.
He said that its time for Indian cricket to look beyond Dhoni and give a chance to someone younger and help them prepare for the upcoming ODI World Cup which will be held in India in 2023. “It is not about Dhoni staying on for the next cricket World Cup, it is about winning the next cricket World Cup. You might want to give the opportunity to Rishabh Pant or Sanju Samson, any young cricketer… They should get the opportunity… I think personally if you ask me, I think it’s time for Indian cricket to look beyond Dhoni,” Gambhir added.
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