Gautam Gambhir on MS Dhoni’s future in international cricket: Necessary to take practical decisions

Will MS Dhoni travel to the West Indies? (Reuters Photo)

Former India opener Gautam Gambhir has said it’s important to be practical than emotional when it comes to taking a call on the future of MS Dhoni’s international cricket. Gambhir pointed out that MS Dhoni, during his time as captain, always wanted to look into the future and gave youngsters a lot of opportunties.

Gambhir’s comments come even as speculations are rife about Dhoni’s future in international cricket. Dhoni, 38, played his last 50-over World Cup match in England earlier this month when India were knocked out of the tournament in the semi-final by New Zealand.

Dhoni’s strike rate had been a cause of concern for Team India during the World Cup. Dhoni hit 273 runs from 9 matches at a strike rate of 87.78 but his inability to keep the scoreboard moving right from the word go was questioned.

“It’s important to look into the future. And when Dhoni was the captain, he invested in the future. I remember Dhoni saying in Australia that me, Sachin and Sehwag can’t play the CB series [in Australia] together as the grounds were big. He thought young players were needed for the next World Cup. It’s necessary to take practical decisions than being emotional,” Gautam Gambhir told TV9 Bharatvarsh.

Gambhir added that India have a good chance to try out youngsters at the wicketkeeper’s position and focus on building a strong team for the 2023 World Cup. The former batsman pointed out that the likes of Rishabh Pant, Ishan Kishan and Sanju Samson can be tried out at different phases in the lead up to the next World Cup.

India have a chance to give youngsters opportunities: Gambhir

Rishabh Pant is being looked at Dhoni’s sucessor. The 21-year-old represented India at World Cup 2019 after being called in as Shikhar Dhawan’s replacement.

“And India now have an chance to give opportunities to youngsters. Be it Rishabh Pant, Sanju Samson, Ishan Kishan or any other wicketkeeper, whoever is believed to have the potential should be made the wicket-keeper. Give him chances for one and half-years and if he doesn’t perform, then others should be tried out as well. Then one would get to know who the keeper for the next World Cup is,” Gambhir added.

Meanwhile, all eyes are on India’s senior selection committee meeting which has been postponed to the weekend as Dhoni’s selection for the West Indies tour, starting August 3 is going to be discussed. Speculations are rife that Dhoni may not go to the West Indies for the limited-overs series, consisting 3 T20Is and as many ODIs.